One of my favorite game modes to play now in NBA2K is the MyLeague and MyGm modes. But when I first started playing them, I was little lost and not sure where to start. I thought others might feel the same way, so I put this guide together to help you figure out how to play and have the most fun with it.
What are the NBA2K MyLeague and MyGM modes?
MyLeague and MyGM modes are the franchise modes in NBA2K. A franchise mode is where you are completely in charge of everything a team or teams in the NBA does. How much you can control is really up to you. In MyLeague, you can control all 30 teams in the league if you want.
But don't let that overwhelm you, you can just control one team if you want.
What is the difference between MyLeague and MyGM?
The first thing I was always confused about was what the difference between MyLeague and MyGM was.
Here's the difference:
- MyGM MyGM is a story mode where you control only one team where you answer directly to the owner. You interact with the owner, your staff and player as well as the press. You control all of the staff, personnel and game decisions for your team. In addition to that, you also control the finances for the team down to what you charge for tickets, parking and even the hot dogs. However, I think the big thing about MyGM that isn't in MyLeague is that you are the GM for the team and as the GM, you "level up" as you gain more experience points. Each time you level up, you can upgrade your team with badges, facility upgrades or pitches you can use to negotiate with your team or other GM's. The goal really is to level up your MyGM just like you level up your MyPlayer in MyCareer. These upgrades to your MyGM make you very powerful in the league and have a big impact on your team's performance. This means the higher your level in MyGM, the easier MyGM can be if you have equipped all of the upgrades.
- MyLeague In MyLeague, you can control one team or you can control them all. However, there is no story mode. You don't answer to an owner nor do you have to worry about the finances of the team. In addition, you can edit just about anything and everything in a MyLeague. You can edit all the teams, their arenas, uniforms staff, players and contracts for any team in the league. However, you don't have to worry about the finances of the team to the extent you do in a MyGM.
In both MyLeague and MyGM, you can play the games or sim them. You can automate most of the tasks in both modes if you want.
Here's a video I did on the differences between MyLeague and MyGM to help a little more.
Should you do a MyLeague or MyGM?
Once you know the difference between MyLeague and MyGM, the next thing you'll need to figure out is which one you will want to do. If you haven't done one before, I'd suggest you start out with MyLeague's first. That's because you won't have to deal with the story mode aspect, managing the owners expectations or dealing with player complaints.
I'd also suggest that you spend some time simming through some seasons just to get the hang of what happens during the year and during the offseason.
This will get you familiar with and more comfortable with how it works. Once you've done that, you can then delete those files and start from scratch with a serious file.
The other thing I would say about which one to use is that if you like the idea of a story mode or you want to build and overpowered general manager, then you'll want to use MyGM. If neither of those appeal to you, I'd go with a MyLeague.
Now, let's talk about the different options you can choose inside of 2K.
Options available in the MyLeague menu
When you get ready to start a MyLeague in NBA2K, you'll be presented with several different menu options asking you what type of MyLeague or MyGM you want to start. Let's walk through each of the options:
- MyLeague This is the primary MyLeague option and the one you'll probably want to choose if you opt for MyLeague over MyGM.
- MyGM For MyGM mode, you have two different types of MyGM's you can play.
- MyGM story mode The first option for MyGM is a special story mode that NBA2K wrote for MyGM. Each year the story changes a little bit. This story lasts for the first season and then converts to a traditional MyGM. Because there's a story involved, you'll be limited in which team you might be able to pick and some things might be scripted. One downside to the story mode I think is that there is no spoken dialogue. This means you have to read the story and this can be time consuming at the beginning of the story. Also, because there is a story mode, this prevents you from using a custom roster in the story mode. You'll have to use the default roster.
- Traditional MyGM Traditional MyGM allows you to control one team but it can be any team you want it to be. Each team has a unique owner you'll have to answer to who has their own goals and objectives they'll ask you to reach. But just like the story mode section, there is no spoken dialogue. But in traditional MyGM, the reading isn't extensive so it's not as big an issue.
- MyLeague Online MyLeague online allows you to play other users online inside the MyLeague interface. Each team is controlled by an owner or cpu if there aren't enough owners. Most of the offline MyLeague options are available in the online version. While not perfect, it's a great way to square off against other users rather than the CPU. All of the other MyLeague options are offline modes only.
- Start Today A start today file is a MyLeague that begins on the day of the season the league is on. That means, you can start playing at the All Star break if you want and each team in the league will have the same record they do in real life. This option is great at the end of the year after the playoffs finish if you want to take a team over in the offseason. However, you can't use a custom roster.
- Season The season option allows you to just go through one season. Once the season ends, it's over. Because of this, I don't ever really use a season file. Instead, I just start another MyLeague if that's what I want to do.
- Playoff A playoff file allows you to run a playoff bracket. You can assign the teams you want in the playoffs. I personally don't use it very much if at all to be honest.
Those are the options to choose from when you first go into the MyLeague options. But now that you know what options to choose from, which one should you choose?
Let's talk about some MyLeague ideas you could do and that will probably give you a better idea of what kind of MyLeague or MyGM you should start.
Fun MyLeague and MyGM Ideas
Part of the fun of the MyLeague and MyGM is that you can decide what your league will be all about. If all want you want to do is play games, you can do that. If you want to sim games you can do that as well. Just want to make personnel decisions in the offseason? Well, you can do that as well.
Here are some approaches you could take to using the MyLeague or MyGM files to give you a few ideas.
- Play as your favorite team The first idea is to play as your favorite team and take over franchise. You could play as your favorite team in either a MyLeague or MyGM file.
- Start today Start using your favorite team from the whatever day in the season it is and see if you can do better.
- Rebuild bad teams The next and probably most common idea is to rebuild really bad teams into championship teams.
- Use a custom roster The next MyLeague idea is to use a custom roster. This is one of my favorite things to do. I've got a video in this section below that will give you several ideas for custom rosters including my personal favorite, the fictional MyLeague where everything is completely fictional from the players to the staff to the teams.
- Use custom draft classes Another great idea is to use some custom draft classes to move your team into the future. There are always some users who have made some pretty good realistic draft classes as well as some fictional draft classes that add a really cool and unknown element into your MyLeague.
- Build theme teams Instead of just going after the best players in the league, you could set out to build a theme team. This would be like an all defensive team or all transition team. The ideas for theme teams are really endless. I put some more ideas in the video I did for this section below.
- Fantasy draft Start your league by using a fantasy draft to draft all of the players on to all new teams.
- Multiple team control Instead of controlling just one team, you could control all 30 teams at one time and really micromanage everything. You could control one team in the east and one in the west for example. 30 teams are too many for me to manage although I do take control of teams from time to time but a lot of people like to do this.
- MyCareer in MyLeague This is another favorite of mine. You can play on player lock in a MyLeague file and just control one guy for his whole career. Then you don't have to worry about the story mode in MyCareer. Make your own story instead and let the game progress your MyPlayer naturally instead of you deciding how to upgrade your MyPlayer.
- Expansion team Another popular idea is the expansion team MyLeague. I really like this idea too. Basically, you take control of an expansion team and build it from scratch with the expansion draft and then try and lead the team to a dynasty.
- Be the General Manager In the strict MyGM idea, you wouldn't play any of the games, you'd just control the franchise to see if you could build a winner by putting the right pieces in place. While you could do this in MyGM and have the upgrade potential, you could also automate most of the tasks except for those a GM would do as well.
- Use these ideas in a MyGM file Many of the ideas could be incorporated into a MyLeague file or a MyGm file. You could also combine many ideas into one file whether you chose a MyLeague or a MyGM.
- MyLeague online You could also incorporate a lot of these ideas into an online file and use them with other users online.
Those are just some of the many good MyLeague and MyGM ideas you could run with. Here's a video where I go into a little more detail about some of these ideas.
How to Set Up Your MyLeague
Unless, you have a lot of experience with changing the settings or working with custom rosters, I'd just go with the default setup with a difficulty level you are comfortable with starting at. Once you get more comfortable with how these two modes.
Ultimately, you can customize just about everything in a MyLeague and to a lessor extent the MyGM files which makes it a really cool mode and one that you can taylor to you specifically.
Here's a setup video I did for a current MyLeague series I'm running if you want to get an idea of how I go about it.
Learning how to manage your team
After you begin playing or simming games, you'll start having other questions you didn't know you needed answers to. These will be things like how to negotiate contracts, how to build a team, how to do trades, manage minutes, manage the salary cap and more.
I've done a lot of tutorials on different aspects of how to manage your team like how to manage the salary cap.
As I build out this guide, I'll put links to certain things here in this section but in the meantime, check my Coach2K YouTube channel for the most up to date stuff and subscribe while you are there.
Most of my questions revolved around how free agency worked. So let's address that in the next section since it is pretty important.
How free agency works in NBA2K
The biggest learning curve is just understanding how free agency works in NBA2K. I think the best way to understand free agency is to watch my walkthrough here:
OK. Start building your dynasty.
Now, you know the basics of what you need to know about these two modes. Check back periodically to see as I plan on updating this guide from time to time when it makes sense to do so.
I'm also interested in hearing about your MyLeague's and MyGM's. Let me know in the comments how your league is going or if you have any questions and I'll try and help you out.