The only part of NBA Jam that doesn't hold up today is its roster and this fan project fixes that problem.
Video games have come a long, long way since the early 1990s — today’s best sports sims look a hair away from real life, whereas back then even the most graphically advanced titles were comparatively basic. However, there are some titles that stand the test of time thanks to their tight core gameplay and among that number is the classic NBA Jam.
Midway Games’ larger-than-life take on basketball was an immediate success upon its initial release and was named the highest-earning arcade game of all time in 1994. Now, a hacked version of its Super Nintendo release has been made available, combining its classic gameplay with updated rosters.
NBA Jam 2K17 features three teams that were not present in the game’s initial release; the Toronto Raptors, the New Orleans Pelicans, and the Memphis Grizzlies. It also boasts 117 of today’s top NBA players to fill out its roster, which is accurate to January 1.
Players have been given accurate attributes and appearances based on NBA 2K17, which was released in September. There are even a few bonus ballers, in the form of NBA legends like Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant.
Given the fact that NBA Jam 2K17 is an unsanctioned re-release of someone else’s game, there is a risk that the project could be thwarted by legal teams representing 2K and Electronic Arts, the two publishers that currently hold NBA licenses.
However, the creator of the project is not looking to make money off the game, which may work in his favor. Instead, anyone that plays and enjoys the game is encouraged to make a donation to the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.