You know the anticipation is real when you wake up early enough to squeeze in a few games of baseball before heading to work.
That’s just what I did the day after MLB The Show 17 released. As exciting as the previous version was, ’17 took things several steps further.
This review simply cannot be valid without mentioning the cover.
The Kid! Ken Griffey Jr. graces the cover of this year’s installment of the popular baseball franchise. Personally, I would have put the Cincinnati Reds uniform on him but I suppose Seattle was where he made his name as a 13-year Mariner.
After importing my Road to the Show starting pitcher from last year’s title, I headed straight for the franchise mode where I selected my Reds of course. One thing that bothered me was all of the tutorials that popped up even though I selected “experienced” player at the title screen.
This year’s game features three broadcast modes, one being a similar-to-real-life MLB Network presentation with Harold Reynolds and Dan Plesac joining the oh-so-familiar voice of Matt Vasgersian. Watching the opening introduction to the Opening Day game where the Reds will host the Philadelphia Phillies was much of the same from ’16.
Another added feature was the fact that you get four options on how you want to play the game. You can choose the traditional 45-minute gameplay option (which will really take you 45 minutes to complete without extra innings), you can control a player and just play the at-bats or roles they would be involved in, much like RTTS. You could quick-manage a game where it will take you roughly 10 minutes or fully manage a game which will take you 45 minutes. I have done quick-manage and the traditional gameplay so far.
The player models don’t look as if they were made of clay anymore. Each player has a unique body type. Perfect example of this is comparing Billy Hamilton to Joey Votto. Hamilton is slender and cut; Votto looks like he just hit a few sets of incline bench press before putting on his uniform.
Pitching is still pitching. The umpires real-life mistakes on balls and strikes is pretty accurate. There are more added animations for pitching. For my RTTS, I use what I believe is Josh Beckett’s pitching windup (All-Star windup 3?) Last year it was All-Star windup 1 so that may have changed.
Hitting is where the game really changes. The ball paths when the ball is fair or foul are completely revamped. I hit a few slicers, I blooped a couple of singles and the ball actually gets stuck in the corners of right and left field. I still have yet to hit a no-doubt home-run so I’ll be sure to update this when I do. Foul ball wise, the fans still have no clue on how to duck out the way of a 110 mph laser.
Stealing bases or hit and run situations are more realistic. Slow players that have no clue on how to jump a pitcher’s stretch, will lazily take off after the pitcher releases the ball getting caught swiping.
After finishing my opening day game with a 4-3 win in extra innings, I tried to simulate the rest of the series but a new feature popped up. The game allowed me the chance to step in during crucial moments to try and seal the deal or complete the comeback for my team.
One crucial moment I was offered was Joey Votto’s performance. He slugged two homers in the game and I had the chance to make it three. I popped up deep to center field but it was cool that I had the chance to do that.
I still have yet to create a new RTTS player, play Diamond Dynasty or the Retro Mode. I will update this article when I do so be on the lookout.
TO BE CONTINUED…
Peace. Love. Someone buy me stubs for my RTTS.