The W is sports video gaming's earliest single-player career mode for a women's club game. It's not a tokenized encounter, nor a reskin of things MT 2K21 does for the men's game. But it's a glaringly few-to-no-frills encounter, and also the lack of investment that I have in my player's development defeats the goal of a single-player livelihood. As such, I can't really warm up to the mode or recommend others spend much time striving it.Other than picking among 10 player archetypes -- whose feature minimums and maximums are locked -- the only effect I have in my player's development is playing well (or not) in a league game. Whatever XP ("MyPoints" in this case) come from this, the game applies automatically in a very opaque process. Developer diaries before NBA 2K21's launch suggested that The W players would take on roles that real-life WNBA stars pursue, while promoting the league itself, carrying on side gigs in media or fashion style, or preparing for a career as a coach. Well, all of this is managed in a process whose only participant interaction is choosing one of three choices off a card between matches. Again, progression is fixed, and all it delivers is unlockable cosmetics items on a fixed schedule.All this means is that you become a very limited core gameplay loop speedily, and one which is quite reminiscent of livelihood manners I saw on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. It is hard to call The W a good first shot at career-mode parity when so much of its enjoyability comes out of, well, just playing with the games themselves. At least that activity is distinguishable from the rest of NBA 2K21 whilst still being fun -- but it was when I was messing about with the WNBA in MyLeague this past year, too.
Likewise, it's tough to criticize Visual Concepts' layout here like tossing female avatars to the much larger world of MyCareer are the simplest or easiest solution. The WNBA deserves to have its own career ecosystem; it is a more supportive statement to give the WNBA its own mode, instead of just dump them to Buy NBA 2K Coins aggressively competitive multiplayer world and let them fend for themselves or, even worse, patronize them with inflated feature evaluations.