If you’re already planning your video game purchases for the year, definitely add the NBA 2K19 release to that list. Do it, even if we don’t have many release details to go on yet.
You’re safe adding NBA 2K19 to the list of games you plan to purchase in 2018 because there’s sure to be a new one. Visual Concepts, the franchise’s developer, turns out a new version of the game for Xbox, PlayStation and Windows PCs every calendar year. These new additions always refresh player rosters, add new features and revamp existing features that aren’t working out.
Here’s everything we know and think we know about the NBA 2K19 release.
NBA 2K19 Release Window & When the Release Date Is
We don’t know the official NBA 2K19 release date, unfortunately. It’s still too early in the year for 2K Sports, the game’s publisher, to announce that information.
That being said, we do have a rough idea of when the NBA 2K19 release date might be. Recent games in the franchise have launched in mid-September. That’s early enough that the release doesn’t interfere with other franchises and late enough in September that 2K Games and Visual Concepts can tease players with The Prelude release. Each game’s Prelude is a free demo that lets players try new mechanics and transfer their progress to the final version of the game.
If 2K Sports sticks to its usual launch window, expect the NBA 2K19 release on September 18th. That would mean an Early Tip-Off Weekend on September 14th.
Which Consoles Will Get NBA 2K19?
Which consoles will get NBA 2K19 isn’t something we have to guess a lot about.
Current consoles will definitely get a release. If you have an Xbox One or a PS4, you have everything you need for the game. Past NBA 2K games have supported HDR color contrast on the PS4, PS4 Pro and Xbox One S. Expect NBA 2K19 to support those too. PS4 Pro and Xbox One X gamers can also expect better graphics and more detailed visuals than on the Xbox One S and standard PS4.
NBA 2K18 also launched on the Nintendo Switch eShop the same day as it did on these other consoles. Expect that again for the NBA 2K19 release, but it’s anyone’s guess when physical copies of the Nintendo Switch version will go on sale. They didn’t arrive at stores for weeks after the eShop’s release.
Only owners of last-generation consoles should be nervous. The Xbox 360 and PS3 launched more than a decade ago, and 2K Sports could kill support for either of them any day now. At the very least, their graphics won’t look as impressive as the Xbox One and PS4 versions do. They may even lack features other versions of the game have. If that happens, it’s smarter to upgrade consoles and buy a current-generation version of the game than to stay on Xbox 360 and PS3.
New Features for NBA 2K19
Besides updated rosters, NBA 2K19 must have new features. 2K Sports would have a hard time convincing gamers to spend at least $60 on the upgrade without any.
In recent years, Visual Concepts has added new features and revamped existing systems without warning. NBA 2K17 included support for HDR color contrast, improved animation and better ball handling. It also revitalized the single-player story with a new story-driven MyCareer. NBA 2K18 added The Neighborhood. The Neighborhood is an online area where players can meet each other, customize their character, start pickup games and check out each other’s stats.
When to Expect More News About NBA 2K19
Each year’s release of NBA 2K is a carefully orchestrated rollout that takes months. Because of that, you can expect to hear about different parts of the NBA 2K19 release at different times.
2K Sports will reveal the cover athlete for the Legend Edition of the game first. This tends to happen in early summer when excitement for the NBA Playoffs is at its highest.
If pre-orders don’t start the day of the Legends Edition cover athlete reveal, definitely expect them by the time 2K Sports share’s which athlete will be on the standard edition’s cover. At this point, we should have a clear idea of what each version of the game will cost and what players will get with their pre-order.
New features are always the last detail 2K Sports and Visual Concepts announce. By late summer, we should have details on the NBA 2K19 Prelude and blog posts detailing what’s new.