Twitter accounts have posted video, apparently from NBA 2k24, of Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard in a Miami Heat uniform at Moda Center. The accompanying audio indicates that he is already a member of the Miami Heat.
“Grant it’s a long way from Portland to Miami, but for Damian Lillard it was all about their relative distance from contention. Yeah, and with the Heat, he joins a team that’s made the finals twice in the last four seasons; they’re hoping he’s the missing piece to go the distance if you will.”
Here is a different video on the Heat court with different audio.
“...and what seemed inevitable Greg, Damian Lillard in a Miami uniform. And he made no secret it was his preferred destination. It took some time but eventually Miami and Portland worked out the deal. A huge move for the Heat”.
Another Dame to Heat commentary on 2K24. They really know the script. pic.twitter.com/6MRYNIgj9C— Lance (@lelance4) September 9, 2023
What’s going on here? Recording commentary for sports simulation video games is an extremely time-intensive and expensive task. Studio time has to be booked, talent has to be paid for and sound engineers have to be provided. Game makers therefore don’t want to add new commentary updates during the season due to costs and logistics, so they try to anticipate developments so that can have appropriate commentary ready for major events.
Usually commentary like Dame being traded to the Heat are turned off. Then if he eventually would be traded to Miami, a simple game update can activate the sound files, making them available. In this case is appears that users have uncovered a way of prematurely turning on this commentary. Trading him to the Heat in certain GM modes apparently activates the sound files. There are also reports of something similar in the game for James Harden, referencing him forcing his way out of Philadelphia (although no destination is specified).
While Miami fans are celebrating this as some sort of sign, it’s nothing more than a game studio trying to cover all of its bases as cheaply as possible.