NBA 2K18 system makes it difficult to personalize your character without microtransactions
Either that or play a lot
Microtransactions are not new to the NBA 2K series. Other entries have used them and people seem to have different opinions about it, however, it's safe to say no one likes the idea of paying more than $60 for in-game items.
NBA 2K18 offers a Virtual Currency (VC) system that allows players to purchase tattoos, haircuts, clothing and other types of customization items for your character in the career mode. You start with $6000 VC, which seems like a lot of money until you check the prices of items.
A haircut and tattoo can cost as high as a $1000 for each one. You can get VC by playing regular matches, but how much you earn depends on how you play and if you win the match. This makes it very difficult to get more VC by this method.
You are left with the option of spending hours grinding or simply pay $10 or $20 dollars to get more VC. It’s either up to you, whether you want to enjoy the game and play many hours or acquire a considerable amount of VC and personalize your character the way you want.