On the plus side, Marv Albert and sidekick Steve Kerr sound terrific, and the in-game arena and crowd noise is pretty darned good. We love how the audience really gets into the game at crunchtime, urging you on defense and crying "Auuuuuuughhhh" when you miss late-game shots (which we did - a lot). Whatever you do, make sure you've got a decent dual analog game pad, as trying to dish and dive with a keyboard will only give you carpal tunnel.
Sadly, on the court there are a host of problems that prevent Live from being taken too seriously. For instance, the AI has decided that there is no need to ever substitute any players - about the only thing that will cause a player to come out of the game is a broken leg or some serious foul trouble. Naturally, this renders most dynasty-related hoop dreams useless, as your precious draft picks and free agent sixth men will rarely strut their stuff on the hardwood. On top of that, the computer-controlled point guards are a lot more selfish than their real-life counterparts, and seemingly break down double-teams with relative ease.
Let's assume for a moment that the announced patch addresses most of the issues - then we've got a decent game on our hands. The Dynasty mode will keep you working the phones, checking out the latest rumors while making sure your team's precious chemistry doesn't get too far down. If so, your billion-dollar center may pout the team right out of the playoff hunt. Be sure to hire the right mix of coaches, and don't forget to schedule off days, team events, and practices without working anyone too hard (lest they get too tired to go to their favorite strip club).