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After Doubling Series Sales With Jordan, NBA 2K12 Continues Retro Theme

After more than doubling its series sales with last year's Michael Jordan focused NBA 2K11, and facing a potential league lockout, NBA 2K12 will continue its focus on basketball history.
2K Games took its NBA 2K franchise in a bold new direction with last year's offering, focusing NBA 2K11 around the career of retired NBA Hall of Fame inductee Michael Jordan with a dedicated career mode on top of an appearance on its cover. Its gamble paid off: the game has sold over 5 million copies to date, more than double the amount that NBA 2K10 sold. The critics loved it too, with consumer reviews site IGN calling it both the "best basketball game ever" and the "best sports game of this generation." Now, in the face of a potential league lockout that could see the National Basketball Association without a season this year, 2K Games is digging even deeper into history, focusing on several other stars from the league's past. The company announced on Thursday that NBA 2K12 -- which is due October 4 -- will include a new "NBA Greatest" mode, which recreates several of the league's historical championship teams, as well as historically important match-ups. "It will be in black and white if (the real game) was in the '60s," 2K sports marketing VP Jason Argent told CNN. "These are actual games that took a lot of effort and a lot of internal debate. Deciding the biggest Kareem Abdul-Jabbar game, it is a pretty big list. But a couple floated to the top, and we had to make some hard decisions about which of those historical games it would be," he continued. In addition to Jordan and Abdul-Jabbar, 2K also said it will feature Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, and Julius "Dr. J" Erving in the mode. The game will be sold with three different covers, featuring Jordan, Johnson and Bird. Three months ago, 2K Sports parent company Take-Two Interactive told investors that it was not taking the possible NBA lockout into consideration for its financial guidance this year, saying that it was unable to quantify what affect that might have. Now that more time has passed, a season is looking less likely, and the release date for the game is inching closer, it will be interesting to see how the company addresses the issue to its investors when it reports on its first quarter fiscal results next week.

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