Basketball video games are about percentages. For two decades, developers have been working on the exact formula for what shots should go in and which shots should not go in. The potion was almost perfected.
Then Stephen Curry came along.
In a Forbes interview, Mike Wang, gameplay director of NBA 2K, explained that Curry is undermining everything his staff has worked for. Shot difficulty and fatigue are two main factors in determining a shot's chance of going in.
"Taking 3s off the dribble are also definitely discouraged in NBA 2K," Wang says. "Especially after over-dribbling beforehand."
NBA 2K attempts to curb the "3-point cheese," a long standing video game problem. In the past, gamers have been able to find a spot with say, Kyle Korver or Ray Allen, and shoot the lights out, possession after possession. Want to score 100 points with J.J. Redick? Get him open every possession in a five-minute quarter game and you have a chance.
Curry is an enigma. He is making three-pointers at a higher rate than any player in NBA history. More than that, he is making shots in ridiculous scenarios. He's popping fadeaways off the dribble. He's drilling off-balance, contested corner threes. He's stopping from 28 feet and swishing rainbows.
"To be completely honest, we are still looking for ways to better translate his game into NBA 2K," Wang says. "He's a 'rule breaker' when it comes to jump shooting … he becomes a problem in the video game world where we’ve been trying to train our gamers [to know] that certain types of shots should be rewarded versus others."
The NBA 2K series is feeling good about every other player in the game. The cover boy, the best player in the world, the only guy who actually "plays like a video game" in real life, is the one player the game still has a lot of work to master.
"We're going to have to invest even more time in future iterations to really let Steph be Steph in future versions of NBA 2K," Wang says.
Stephen Curry should not even play NBA 2K. It can only discourage him -- the game can't capture his magic.
-- Follow Jeffrey Eisenband on Twitter @JeffEisenband.