MLB The Show 17 a Home Run

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MLB The Show, as a franchise, has a monopoly on the major system baseball simulation market, so they don’t need to change their game from year to year, as people have no other games to buy. However, each year, the game keeps getting better.

The changes that are most significant to the game are possibly the subtlest. In this year’s installment, realistic ball physics and new player animations were added (on top of the old animations). The ball behaves more like it would in real life. In a real game, the ball rarely, if ever, travels in a straight line, but it used to in video games. Now, when a ball is hit in certain ways, it will curve down the line or have top spin. Additionally, the new player animations are even harder to notice to new players of the game. The players are now better at judging how hard they have to throw balls in the infield and take more realistic routes to fly balls in the outfield. Another major addition to MLB The Show 17 is the addition of new classic stadiums. For the people in our area, the ability to play in the old Yankee Stadium and Shea Stadium is particularly significant. Other new classic stadiums are the old Florida Marlins Stadium, the Minnesota Metrodome, and Turner Field in Atlanta. A final new addition is the ability to switch presentation modes. There are “MLB Network”, “Theme 1”, and “Theme 2”. Theme 2 is the old one, while Theme 1 is a rather simple, but new display. The MLB Network option is meant to imitate how a game is presented on the actual MLB Network on TV. They simply give the player a way to spice up each game.

A staple of the “The Show” franchise is the “Road to the Show” mode. That mode lets you play with a created player as they make their way up through the minors and into the majors. In this year’s game, the mode is treated more like a baseball documentary with cutscenes, narration, and conversations with coaches. A new game mode is called “Retro Mode”. It aims to make the game feel like an old arcade game through simplified controls, new sound effects, and the ability to move the pitcher and batter around the mound and batter’s box respectively.

I would give this game a 9.3/10. The only major negative is the unreliable and weak online servers. Personally, I almost exclusively play in the offline modes (ex. Franchise and Road to the Show) and not the online ones (ex. Diamond Dynasty), so the servers don’t affect me that much, but it is significant none the less. This year’s game is a fantastic game, and a great new addition to the franchise.

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