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'NBA Now' game offers a quick basketball fix on your phone

Jon Fingas
Associate Editor

If you're a big enough basketball game fan that you can't wait to get home before shooting hoops, there might be a solution in sight. Gamevil has released NBA Now, a game for Android and iOS that's designed to be played with one hand. Rather than take direct control of players, you serve as a general manager trying to create an all-star team and steer games from the sidelines. Accordingly, everything is designed to be played one-handed -- there's always a vertical view of the action with abstract on-screen controls. It won't be as involving as the latest console hit, but you can play while you're waiting for the bus.

There are some uncommon twists for games like this. Player ratings are based on real NBA stats that change from day to day. And if your NBA knowledge runs deep, you can earn perks for predicting winning teams. Multiplayer, meanwhile, should keep the game lively.

The title is available for free, although you likely know what that means: in-app purchases. Gamevil has loaded NBA Now with a virtual coin system and other purchases that suggest this could be a grind if you're not willing to pay. Still, it's not often that you see a basketball game that's this optimized for on-the-go play. It might not hurt to give it a try if you think you could create a better team than the pros.