Return to the NBA Journey, Week Sixteen: Balance Updates

What good is a series without a trilogy? For the third time, The Sports Fan Journal heads on the NBA Journey. For the first two years, we had a level of surety as to where our destination would be. The first year, we were correct. The second, we were correct in location, but not in victor, as the Toronto Raptors won the title last year. Now, the NBA springs anew and for the first time in a while, we're not totally sure where our destination lies. This allows for a current kind of exploration. Let's continue with our next installment after a week of games.

Song of The Week: DBFZ OST - "Hit's Theme"

Remember the days when video games came as is? Anything in the game, good or bad, was a part of that game. Bugs and such had to be dealt with until the complaints forced developers to release a different version of the game--spending resources and cutting into profit margins by having to manufacture more physical copies of games. One of the biggest examples of this is Superman 64 for the Nintendo 64. Released in 1999, it was to be one of the jewels of the console. However, because developers were rushed to complete the have, it had tons of bugs, shoddy gameplay and was a nightmare to attempt to play. Unfortunately, neither Nintendo nor developer Titus Interactive cared enough about consumer gripes to release an updated version of the game.

Today's tech age allows for bugs and other negative things to be fixed online. Instead of having to make multiple versions of a game (unless the developer wants to), games have balance updates and patch notes that help make games fair. This is especially helpful for fighting games, where players search for ways to exploit advantageous moves characters have. From infinite combos (NSFW) to extremely difficult guessing situations, players use what they deem the best characters available for them to win as efficiently as possible.

There's nothing wrong with some characters being better than others. The variety of character types adds to the fun of playing those games. And just as some styles of NBA teams can overwhelm others, some characters do well against others based on how the characters are constructed. However, fighting games teeter on meeting unfair when a character can do too many good things that most other characters cannot.

DragonBall FighterZ is slated to release its third season soon. In it will be a few new characters, as well as fixes to some characters in the name of fairness. While some characters have to be better and worse than others, developer BandaiNamcoUS is trying its best to make ever character viable for victory against every other character. In a perfect world, all characters perform the same. But the uniqueness of those characters simply won't allow that.

We've reached the unofficial break point of the season. The All-Star Game is this weekend and the trade deadline has come and gone. Names like Andre Drummond, D'Angelo Russell and Clint Capela changing teams, there is a difference in the NBA's large-scale. With the swap of over 30 players, the NBA and its franchises had its own version of balance updates. Bettors on the league must recalibrate as well, which is why we point them to Gamble-USA's app guide for advice. These aren't done in the name of fairness, however, as there are different motives based on current standings and future goals. Playoff teams are positioning for deep runs. Fringe teams are deciding between a second half push or trying to improve draft position. Some teams are creating salary cap room. Whatever a team's purpose for dealing or not dealing, The Association has completed its major February update. For the most part, teams are constructed as they are and the season will play out as it is, whether fair and competitive or not.

Sixteen weeks in, and we're still on the Journey. Enjoy All-Star Weekend and happy NBA, folks.

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