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This game lets you play two-on-two arcade basketball with players from all the NBA teams. Gameplay is fast and action-packed, with few rules, no fouls, and deliberately unrealistic jamming. Players are rated on eight ability categories, from steals and blocks, to dunks and 3-pointers.

Up to four human players can take part, each always controlling a single player for their team, and AI for missing players. This allows for four players to face each other in teams of two, or for two players to team up against a third player with a CPU team-mate.

The Tournament Edition ups each team's roster to three players, and allows for substitutions between quarters. Shoving players now results in injuries, which lower a player's stats; encouraging you to sub them out and let them recover. Aside from the usual secret characters and cheat modes, the T.E. also includes four new additions you can individually enable from the special options menu:
  • "Hot Spots" are randomized zones on the court that reward extra points (up to a 9-point shot!) for making a basket while standing within them.

  • Powerup icons appear randomly, and convey temporary arcade-like benefits when picked up. Some examples are instant "on-fire," enhanced 3-point accuracy, monster dunks from anywhere on the court, or a bomb that knocks all other players to the ground.

  • "Juice Mode" increases the speed of the game up to 4x.

  • "Tournament Mode" disables all other modes, special characters, and cheats, and challenges you to defeat all the NBA teams to unlock extra players (2 extra players for almost every team). Winning Tournament Mode also unlocks a higher CPU difficulty level.


NBA Jam Tournament Edition SNES Johnson puts it away
NBA Jam Tournament Edition Game Gear Will you leave your name to history?
NBA Jam Tournament Edition SEGA 32X Ball going through the net
NBA Jam Tournament Edition Jaguar The Fresh Prince!

Promo Images

NBA Jam Tournament Edition Other Front
NBA Jam Tournament Edition Other Back
NBA Jam Tournament Edition Magazine Advertisement pp. 2-3

Alternate Titles

  • "NBA Jam TE" -- Informal Name
  • "NBA JAMトーナメントエディション" -- Japanese Spelling

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Hyperkinetic Basketball frenzy DOS Zovni (10646)
Very arcade DOS Roedie (5252)

Critic Reviews

Player One SEGA 32X Aug, 1995 94 out of 100 94
Mean Machines Genesis Apr, 1995 90 out of 100 90 Genesis Apr 27, 2006 9 out of 10 90
Sega Saturn Magazine SEGA Saturn Nov, 1995 89 out of 100 89
Electric Playground SEGA 32X Sep 01, 1995 8.5 out of 10 85 Genesis Jan 18, 2010 16 out of 20 80
GamePro (US) SEGA 32X Aug, 1995 4 out of 5 80 SNES Jan 28, 2010 16 out of 20 80
Mega Fun Game Gear Mar, 1995 64 out of 100 64
Video Games Game Boy Jun, 1995 54 out of 100 54


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  • Originally Acclaim wanted to add players from the Mortal Kombat game as hidden players, but they had to be removed because the NBA found them not suited to their image.
  • A legal issue prevented the name Michael Jordan making an appearance in the game. Look what Acclaim has done instead: Jordan's Bulls team-mate Ron Harper is the named player, but the picture is of Jordan.
  • Due to Charles Barkley's licensed game Shut up and Jam, he does not appear in the game

Version differences

  • The DOS, Jaguar, Playstation, and Sega Saturn versions of the game use a 3D scaling technique, the players are big when they're on the near side of the court (close to the camera) and smaller when they're on the far side of the court. The 16-bit versions of the game don't have this feature. The 16-bit releases also lack recognizable faces (during gameplay) and voice calls for every player name.
  • The rosters of the DOS, Genesis, and SNES version are based on the 1994-1995 season (small differences between versions exist due to trades that could / couldn't be included because of the different release dates).

Contributed to by POMAH (53512), MusicFox (2725), chirinea (44752), Kohler 86 (7967), Roedie (5252) and quizzley7 (21717)