If fans want it badly enough, Dota 2 players could soon have their games commentated by the legendary announcer from NBA Jam.
A new Dota 2 announcer pack based on NBA Jam is now up for voting on the Steam Workshop. The fully-voiced sound pack is a joint effort between Jake “SirActionSlacks” Kanner and Shannon “SUNSfan” Scotten of DotaCinema. The pair announced the project on May 11 just before the start of the Stockholm DPC Major. If it goes live, owners and their teammates will take a trip back through gaming history.
The announcer pack is full of references to the classic retro basketball game. Based on the trailer, it seems that the pack has lines for every hero introduction, game mode, and draft phase. As expected of a SirActionsSlacks project, almost every line is a joke of some sort. There’s also a lot more swearing compared to the average Dota 2 announcer pack.
“Silencer! Bringing the noise like we’re in the library!”
“Bane! You think that’s a nightmare? You should have seen my ex-wife. Hey-o!”
The voice actor for the pack is Tim Kitzrow, the announcer from the original NBA Jam. Kitzrow provided tons of voice lines for the pack, including some very specific lines for team fights and item purchases. In addition to recreating the classic NBA Jam announcer, Kitzrow’s lines are frequently references to the classic arcade basketball game. This is actually the second announcer pack that Kitzrow has recorded for Dota 2. A 2018 Dota Jam announcer pack was recorded but never added to the official game.
How to vote for the NBA Jam announcer pack on Steam Workshop
Now that the NBA Jam pack is on Steam Workshop, it’s up to fans to get it into the game. Dota 2 players can vote for or against its inclusion on its Steam Workshop page. If it gets enough votes, Valve can eventually choose to make it a real item via the in-game cash shop.
The only potential problem is copyright. Aside from literally being called the NBA Jam announcer pack, many of the lines and expressions are ripped straight from that game. The current copyright holders behind the NBA Jam brand may not like Valve making money off the brand through the popular MOBA.
Then again, Dota 2 already has some references to NBA Jam. Earthshaker’s arcana Planetfall has NBA Jam references, including a mighty “Boom shakalaka!” for Echo Slam. His classic “Chaos Dunk!” line is also a reference to basketball parody RPG Barkley, Shut Up and Jam: Gaiden.