NBA 2K3 ReleasedSEGA® of America, Inc. announced today the simultaneous release of “SEGA Sports™ NBA 2K3” for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, the Xbox™ video game system from Microsoft® and the Nintendo GameCube™. Critically acclaimed for its authentic and entertaining simulation of the NBA game, “SEGA Sports NBA 2K3” takes the genre to unprecedented levels of realism with unmatched player and ball physics, an ESPN telecast-style presentation, groundbreaking animations, an in-depth franchise mode and full online gameplay on PlayStation 2 and Xbox. Developed by Visual Concepts Entertainment, a SEGA development studio, “SEGA Sports NBA 2K3” captures all of the nuances of the NBA game, from Allen Iverson’s signature crossover to high-flying dunks from the league’s top skywalkers. “The ‘SEGA Sports NBA 2K’ series has consistently delivered the type of hoops simulation experience that NBA fans crave and it has quickly become a cornerstone of the SEGA Sports brand,” said Tom Nichols, vice president of sports marketing, SEGA of America, Inc. “In the development of ‘SEGA Sports NBA 2K3,’ we concentrated on perfecting both the gameplay and visual elements that are truly specific to the NBA,” said Greg Thomas, president of Visual Concepts Entertainment, a SEGA development studio. “As a result, gamers are closer to the NBA hardwood in ‘SEGA Sports NBA 2K3’ than any other NBA video game.” Building off the strong gameplay foundation of the “SEGA Sports NBA 2K” series, gameplay enhancements to “SEGA Sports NBA 2K3” include the ability to control pass type and direction, fake a pass, freely adjust lay-ups and dunks in mid-air and lunge out of bounds for loose balls. In the paint, an enhanced low-post game lets players fake, pivot, drop-step and even front the offensive player, while total control rebounding allows effective blocking out and board work. Enhanced ball and player physics produces more realistic caroms off the rim, while accurate impact collisions on hard fouls and blocks mimic the precise nature of the NBA. The game’s visual improvements are equally as striking. Specular Highlighting, a graphical technique designed to show players sweating during the game, is among the game’s key visual enhancements. “SEGA Sports NBA 2K3” also features the incredibly detailed player faces and lifelike player expressions that more effectively convey the emotions of an NBA game. Players are instantly recognizable and react realistically to the action around them. From the players’ tattoos to the mascots, each individual 3D model is designed to match the exact look of its real-world counterpart. Rounding out the package is a complete ESPN telecast presentation, which includes TV-style player introductions, dynamic replays and scoreboards and graphics overlays. “SEGA Sports NBA 2K3” returns the series to the online arena with the introduction of full online play and downloadable content for both PlayStation 2 and Xbox. Gamers from around the country will be able to challenge one another over the Internet, check their win/loss records, download roster updates and maintain a list of favourite opponents. Additionally, the SEGA Sports Challenge, appearing in the SEGA Sports 2K3 games, allows fans to compare their offline stats against other players nationwide. Joining the returning Exhibition, Tournament, Season and Practice Modes are reconstructed Franchise and Street Modes. The Franchise Mode allows users the option of signing free agents and coaches, scouting and drafting rookies and making trades. The Street Mode, which features legendary real-world street courts from around the country, now lets players customize their own street team by selecting any player from the current NBA rosters, one of the all-decade legends teams or from their roster of created players. Other exciting new features in the Street Mode include animated crowds and the addition of variable weather including rain and fog.