Struggling with shooting in NBA 2K21? Don’t worry: you’re not alone. Thankfully, there’s plenty of easy ways to improving your shooting percentage, and here are some tips and badge to help you start hitting those buckets.
NBA 2K21‘s shooting has been a rather hot topic since launch. To put it simply, the game’s refined — or not — shooting mechanics have been on the receiving end of a rather nasty campaign by the game’s community, and probably with good reason. While 2K Sports had the intent to create a more “realistic” and challenging sport simulator, the end result is a learning curve that may sit perfectly for experienced players, but is ultimately far to steep for casual and newer players.
Thankfully, a recent hotfix patch looks to address a lot of the concerns for the community, creating somewhat of a barrier between those on the higher end of the skill bracket, and those on the lower end.
That said, if you’re new to NBA 2K and are looking to improve your skills, particularly for online and Neighbourhood play, the recommendation is to master the skills as the masters use them. This will involve perfectly shooting as it was initially intended, as opposed to how it’s been “toned down” for use on lower skill levels. If you’re playing the game just for fun, then sure, take advantage of the update on lower difficulty settings, but if you ever want to earn some rep online, you’re eventually going to have to master the craft at a very high level.
Have some tips you’d like to share with the NBA 2K21 community? Sound off in the comments below!
In response to a lot of the criticism aimed at NBA 2K21‘s shooting issues, I’m seeing a lot of the more skilled player ridiculing casual players whilst pointing their finger at Badges. They’re right to some degree in that ultimately, Badges are there to help propel your player and skillset to a level simply not possible any other way. They can effectively act as passive “boosts” for your player, and so if you’re not hitting your shots, chances are it’s because you haven’t really chosen or earned the right badges yet.
Important to know that, if you create a Defense/Rebounding and Playmaking player in the MyPlayer Builder, you’re limiting your Shooting and Finishing Badge potential, which is only going to make things harder for you. If you want to be hitting a lot of shots every game, then your build needs to incorporate that logic, thus opening the door for more Shooting Badges.
For those new to NBA 2K21, Badges are earned by essentially playing the game: the more you achieve in a particular component of a match, the more you earn towards earning a badge. For example, score more buckets off layups in traffic, and your Finishing Badge meter will fill up very quickly, soon allowing you to add more Badges to your build.
Provided you’ve got the right build to suit your playing intent, here are the ideal badges you want to compensate for any challenges you may face with the new shooting mechanisms. Firstly, let’s take a look at the best Finishing badges.
Pro Touch Badge
Ideal for Finishing builds, this gives you a boost for good timing on layups, and an extra shot boost for having slightly early, slightly late, or excellent shot timing on layups.
Consistent Finisher Badge
This badge will reduce the penalty for a poorly release layup. This means that a strong finisher can get a slight boost in traffic for any mis-timed layups.
Giant Slayer Badge
I tend to prefer small point guard builds, and I prioritise Finishing first, and a challenge I found early on in NBA 2K21 is that, along with a lot of mis-timed shots, I was being blocked a lot more. The Giant Slayer badge increases the effectiveness of your layup over taller defenders, and provides a boost to the shot percentage of any layup attempt whilst mismatched against a taller defender. This is particularly useful in pick-and-roll scenarios against strong defenses where weak-side help is strong into the paint.
Pick and Roller Badge
If you’ve got a strong PF or C build with some outside range, I love this badge because it gives a shot percentage boost to the roller in a pick and roll.
Tear Dropper Badge
Depending on the build of course, but a not-so-strong rim finisher may be more inclined to drop in a Derrick Rose-esque tear drop (not to say the guy couldn’t hit strong at the rim, at least not pre-2012). This badge simply increases a player’s ability to hit a tear drop floater.
Next up I’ll touch on Shooting Badges. This is not definitive and it’s up to you which you prioritise but if you’re struggling and looking for specific boosts to compensate for poor timing in NBA 2K21 then I recommend prioritising these badges. Feel free to sound off in the comments below if you disagree.
Flexible Release badge
This is the must-have badge if you’re struggling with shooting. This badge will reduce the penalty received from a mist-time jump shot release. It goes without saying that if you’re struggling to hit shots it probably has to do with your timing, and so this badge should be prioritised.
Green Machine badge
This may seem like a redundant badge next to the aforementioned Flexible Release badge, but I think it’s important to have once you do start mastering the craft (and you will: trust me). It gives an additional shot boost when consecutively achieving excellent releases on jump shots.
Catch and Shooting badge
You can’t look past this badge because it gives you a boost when catching the ball and immediately shooting off a pass. Outside shooting attributes get a slight boost for a short period of time when immediately catching a pass.
Clutch Shooter badge
Probably doesn’t need much justification here but this badge will give you a boost during the final moments of a quarter. The fourth quarter and Overtime periods get an even larger boost.
Steady Shooter badge
This badge will tie in well with the Finishing badges outlined above. It reduces the penalties for contested shots, and but with a cost in that it reduces any bonuses earned for open shots.
Tireless Shooter badge
This is especially useful early on in your NBA 2K21 career when your player may face fatigued ends to quarters as they build up their stamina. This badge will improve a player’s ability to make shots when fatigued.
Do you have any tips or recommendations for NBA 2K21 players that are struggling with their shooting? Sound off in the comments below!