Core badges are a new part of the NBA 2K23 badge system that allows you to equip top-tier badges without using badge points. In this post we break down the specifics of this new system and how you can benefit from it.

Quick Breakdown of the Badge System

As of now, the badge system is broken into three tiers for each badge category – Tier 1, 2, and 3. Tier 3 badges are considered the best, while Tier 1 badges are considered the worst. These tiers are dependent on height.

Tier 1 badges cost 1-2-3-4 badge points from Bronze to Hall of Fame, Tier 2 badges cost 3-4-5-6 from Bronze to HOF, and Tier 3 badges require 5-6-7-8 badge points from Bronze to HOF.

You must also equip 10 badge points from Tiers 1 and 2 (the two lowest) before equipping a Tier 3 badge. Thus, you would need at least 18 badge points to get a Tier 3 HOF badge.

How a Core Badge Fits into this System

Once you equip your first Tier 3 badge, a ‘Core Challenge’ will start. These challenges are dependent on the badge, for example, the Core Challenge for Rebound Chaser would be focused on grabbing rebounds.

Once you complete the Core Challenge, you can equip the badge as a “Core Badge,” and the cost of the badge does not count against your badge points. This means that, if you have 18 badge points, you can have one HOF Tier 3 Core badge and another HOF Tier 3 badge.

You get one Core badge per category (Finishing, Shooting, so on), which can be from any tier. Of course, you will want most of them to be from Tier 3, but sometimes you may have to settle for a lesser badge.

The Core badge system is a great idea in that badges are very expensive this year, and this allows you to, at least, get another important badge at no cost. And the progress on any level, say from Bronze, carries over to higher levels as you unlock them.

Which Badges should I make my Core Badges

Obviously this depends on your position and how you play, but here are our recommendations for each position on which are the best badges to make your Core badges:


  • Finishing: Posterizer or Limitless Takeoff
  • Shooting: Limitless Range
  • Playmaking: Killer Combos or Handles for Days
  • Defense: Clamps


  • Finishing: Posterizer or Limitless Takeoff
  • Shooting: Catch and Shoot
  • Playmaking: Clamp Breaker
  • Defense: Clamps

Big Men

  • Finishing: Bully
  • Shooting: Catch and Shoot
  • Playmaking: Break Starter
  • Defense: Anchor or Rebound Chaser