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  • Writer's pictureGreg Ezell

Pro Basketball Manager 2024 Review

Updated: Nov 29, 2023

A slam dunk or an end of the bench player?

When it comes to sports games, you have sports gamers that talk about “simulation games” like NBA 2K, MLB The Show, Madden and EA FC (formerly known as FIFA) and then you have sports simulation games. Most sports gamers won’t bother themselves with real sports simulation games because unlike the ones mentioned earlier, they’re not flashy and they’re very, very layered.

But that doesn’t make them bad. In fact, anyone looking for a true look at what it’s like running a sports franchise should be looking at these games. The most popular ones are Franchise Hockey Manager, Out of the Park Baseball and Football Franchise Manager, but another one came across my desk last week:

Pro Basketball Manager 2024.

Basketball has always held a special place in my heart. It was the first sport I played growing up and was truly the first sport I’ve loved. Virtually, I always had some sort of basketball game in my rotation - whether it was NBA Jam, Coach K Basketball on Sega Genesis, NBA Live or NBA 2K because it was my chance to live out my dreams of playing basketball on the big stage.

Sleek menu

As I grew older, I wanted something deeper than what those games could give me and it seems that I’ve found that with Pro Basketball Manager 2024. I want to give it up to Umix Studios, a company of three people, for developing and making this game grow since its inception in 2012. Currently, Pro Basketball Manager 2024 has official licenses with seven professional basketball leagues, but none of them are the NBA.

Worry not friends because the Steam Workshop is here to save you! Currently, there is a “Real Names Mod” in the workshop which adds all the NBA players and logos that you’re looking for. This mod brings some incredible immersion because now you’re managing Jayson Tatum and not the Wal-Mart version Jayson Tatem.

Jayson Tatum "Real Name Mod" screen
Bless the PBM community. "Real Name Mod" is already available!

When it comes to sports simulation games, you’re going to live and die by your database. The versatility and depth of the database sets you aside and I’m happy to say that Pro Basketball Manager 2024’s database is incredibly robust. Another positive for this title is that Umix Studios included a Pro Basketball Manager 2024 Data Editor which will allow you to create any mods you want for this game. Want to try and get your Twitch community in a league to play one another? You can make that happen.

Pro Basketball Simulator 2024 has everything you’re looking for when it comes to a sports simulator. The interface is clean and slick and does a good job making sure that you have access to everything from managing minutes to scouting overseas and all of it is easily accessible. Being new to the series, I didn’t feel like I was endlessly searching around for buttons.

Sleek menu
Nice clean interface!

One thing I really like about Pro Basketball Simulator 2024 is that you’re able to go at your own pace. Do you want to manage the on-the-court action, manually substitute your players and change tactics on the go based on how the game is going? You can do that.

Want to sim a season and let the engine deal with everything? You can do that as well.

When the actual basketball starts, don’t expect NBA 2K levels of detail. Pro Basketball Manager 2024 runs polygonal players on Unity and it isn’t anything to look at. These types of games aren’t made to draw in players with high fidelity character animations and life-like arena replication. You play these types of games because you want pure simulation basketball, something NBA 2K doesn’t readily deliver anymore. Player animations are janky and sometimes the passes take rainbow arch patterns to get to their intended target, but its easy to get past that when the game itself is intense.

Sleek menu
The animations are fine, just don't expect NBA 2K

I’ve found myself sitting at my desk, staring at my monitor like I was watching a real NBA game and wondering what tactics I should pull off to stop a 9-2 run and weighing out if I should burn a timeout or not.

After about 7.5 hours in two days, Pro Basketball Manager 2024 has me sucked in like Franchise Hockey Manager and I can absolutely see myself spending 200+ hours much like I did in FHM5. If you’re looking for a good basketball simulator, look no further than Pro Basketball Manager 2024.

*Code provided for review from Umix Studios.


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