When the rejuvenated NBA Jam series was first announced as a Wii exclusive, there was very little hope that both PS3 and Xbox 360 gamers would get to experience the title on their consoles. However, later it was revealed that this game was in fact multiplatform and was expected to become available months after the Wii launch. Now today ESPN is reporting that EA Sports is packaging a version of NBA Jam with NBA Elite 11 via a downloadable code. The only problem with this strategy is that this game will severely pale in comparison to it’s Wii counterpart. Take a look at a statement courtesy of Jordan Edelstein, Vice President of Marketing for EA Sports:
Included in the downloadable version of “NBA Jam” will be three game modes — Play Now, Classic Campaign, and Online (up to four players) — meaning that the new Remix Tour featuring boss battles against legends like Magic Johnson is now exclusive to the Wii version of the game.
We’re still holding back the Remix Tour for the Wii consumer, and that’s about 20 hours of gameplay.But for the PS3 and 360, we want people to try ‘Elite’. We feel like ‘NBA Elite 11’ is a great product and we want people to give it a chance and see all the changes we’re making. So as a way to say thanks to these people, we are going to let them experience ‘Jam’. It’s not the full product, but it’s a good portion of it.
And the only way to play ‘Jam’ on the 360 and PS3 is by picking up ‘Elite’. There’s a one-time use code that will be in every copy of ‘Elite’, so you just go online and redeem it. We’re not selling ‘Jam’ on PSN or Xbox Live. If you still want the full product, the full experience is on the Wii, but if you pick up ‘Elite’, you’re still getting a good taste of it, especially with the inclusion of online play.
Considering that many non-Wii fans were excited for this game, I think it’s safe to say now that this move by the company has the potential to worsen sales. Given that NBA 2k11 is giving basketball fans the option to play as Jordan, EA Sports really had an opportunity to increase interest in their game by offering the full version of NBA Jam as a bonus. Consumers are often looking for value from a product and when a publisher/developer flat out tells you that your aren’t getting the full version of something then it’s likely to turn most people off.Knowing this new information about NBA Elite does this make you want to pick up the title or leave it as a bench warmer to NBA 2k11?