by Devon Jeffreys, June 11, 2012
As a child of the video game age and a proponent of physical activity, Deron Williams is thrilled to represent a special product that will be debuting this fall.
Deron is the cover athlete for the new Xbox 360 game, NBA Baller Beats, an interactive game that blends basketball and music and uses Kinect to keep players of all ages active as they play. Players must dribble an actual basketball and use crossovers and pump fakes to follow the beat.
"It's a really exciting game. I'm really happy to be a part of this. It's my first game cover," he told the Los Angeles Times. "Childhood obesity is a big problem today and this game gets kids up, gets kids active and it's a way to have fun and learn the game of basketball."
Learning starts at the beginner stages where even those less experienced than Deron at dribbling can pick up the idea and run with it. From there, the game ramps up and can be a challenge for even the most talented dribblers, like Deron.
"If you don't know how to play basketball, you can learn how to play, learn how to dribble. It's challenging, even for me. I've only played a few times, but it's a pretty good workout," he said. "As you get to the higher levels, the harder songs, there are different moves and it can be tricky."
D-Will was on hand last week at the E3, the Electronic Entertainment Expo, last week to show off the game and talk about why he loves it. He even gave it a test run:
Deron said the idea to be on the cover of the game was pitched to him by his agent and he was skeptical, but when he heard the premise, he had to see it in action. Once he went into the studio and saw the making of it, the concept and the execution, D-Will knew it was a project he want to be associated with.
"It really seemed like an interesting game and I wanted to really see the concept, so I went into the studio and checked out the game and was really amazed," he said. "I've played Guitar Hero and Rock Band and it's kind of a similar platform, but it incorporates basketball, which is what I love and what I do."
D-Will grew up a gamer, playing the likes of Super Tecmo Bowl and Double Dragon in the 80's. He's a huge fan of the Call of Duty franchise as well, but his belief is that NBA Baller Beats changes the game for gamers.
"I've played all the video games from Atari to Nintendo to SEGA to now I'm on Xbox," he told the Times. "This is like a different game to me. It's on a whole other level. There's nothing really like this as far as basketball is concerned. This is the first time you can incorporate yourself into the game. You're not playing as a character or as an NBA player, you're playing as yourself."
And as a parent, Deron is looking forward to teaching his kids how to play the game of basketball in a unique and fun way.
"I play a lot of games with my kids on Kinect, so this is another way we can just have fun and really teach them the game of basketball," he said. "They're at the age where they want to learn how to play basketball and they like dribbling, so this is a game they'll love to play."
NBA Baller Beats is scheduled for a September 2012 release, only on Xbox 360.
Watch Deron talk more about NBA Baller Beats courtesy of Machinima: