PS3 Review of MLB The Show 2014 Career Mode
I am a baseball junkie. I fucking love the game of baseball. Yeah, I’m a fan of basketball and football (you know real sports!) but the hardest thing to accomplish in all of sports is to hit a round ball with a round bat with less than a half a second to decide whether to swing or not. I’ve been playing baseball games since back in the day of the Nintendo NES. Normally 2K sports baseball games consist of an updated roster and some new graphics. After spending hour upon hour in career mode I abandon my hall of fame bid only to be greatly disappointed that the new version is pretty much the same game as the previous version.
I 100% was not going to purchase MLB The Show 2014 as I was in year 6 of MLB The Show 2013 and was half a season away from free agency. I was at the mall on Saturday and promised my kid that I was going to buy him Pokemon X since he crushed his last report card. Being the good dad that I am he and I went to GameStop to purchase the game when I said to the clerk “Let me see MLB The Show 14.” There is one reason I purchased the game and one reason only. When you start a career and the next version comes out you can import your career into the new game! You mean no more starting over from scratch? Yeah I know if I’m lucky this game was last another 2-3 years on the PS3 but I was sold.
WOW! Create your player based on a current MLB star or start from scratch? I’ll start from scratch thank you much. Assign your self 5 tool upgrades? WTF? In MLB The Show 14 you have 5 skill blocks you can assign to assure that your newly created player is not a super scrub. Want him to be a base burner? Want him to be a speedster? Want him to knock ball after ball over the fence? You can assign all 5 skill blocks to one category or spread them out.
After creating your player you go on to play in 3 game showcase against other prospects. Once the 3 games are completed you can choose to go directly to a team or enter the draft which is what I chose to do. I was select in the 2nd round by the Arizona Diamondbacks. I was than presented with an option to sign with the Diamondbacks, go to junior college for a year or more as well as go to college for a year or more. Since there was no way I wanted to play for that Arizona franchise I played 1 year of junior ball (simulated of course) and was able to one again play the 3 game showcase. I did well and was selected in the 1st round, 3rd overall, by the Chicago White Sox. WOO HOO!
I don’t know about you but the goals used to drive me bat shit crazy! This is supposed to be a baseball simulation yet the organization is telling me that in order to reach my goals I should drive in 20 rbi’s in the next 5 series, hit 8 bombs, or total 40 bases? “Sorry kid, your not working out the way we liked as you only hit 7 homers in the last 5 series and we were expecting 8?! So unrealistic!!
Thankfully in MLB The Show 2014 the goals are 100% GONE as in NO MORE! Gone are unrealistic expectations and enter a feature I absolutely love. It used to be that in career mode you could work on your contact or power against right handed pitching and your left handed contact or power would get a boost as well. This is no longer as when you boost an attribute only that attribute is effected.
Another feature in career mode that I love is that is takes a ton of skill points to boost certain attributes. My player is only a 64 contact hitter against right handed pitchers and at 60 for power against right handed pitching yet it costs around 125 points to boost up one skill level. Making the major leagues is hard and earning that many points is hard as well. In some games, even when you go 4-4 with 2 doubles and 2 singles may only earn you 40 points. At this rate it may take me 2-3 full seasons of minor league ball to make the show and I’m more than okay with that.
Yet another feature that I love is dynamic hitting. I opted for timed hitting and started at the rookie hitting level. After half a season at Double A where I hit around .280 with 3 homers and 20 rib’s (made the all star team?) I eventually graduated to veteran hitting level where I now am at. I was unhappy playing for the ChiSox minor league team so I requested a trade and was actually traded before my next game to the Rays.
Let’t get to the hitting! Fucking awesome!! There are a ton of pitches outside of the strike zone for a change. It used to drive me crazy that just because I was in the minors pitchers used to give me down the pipe fastballs. The pitching is much more realistic as the first 2 pitches may be out of the zone and if you’re up in the count 2-0 you may get something good to hit. Even if you time the swing perfectly you may simply hit a fly ball to center as your contact and power attributes are still low. “Throw me that shit next year and that will be 10 rows into the bleachers meat!”
Granted I don’t have a ton of time to play MLB The Show 14 but it’s a baseball video game experience I never thought would be possible. Even if I’m only able to play a 3 to 4 seasons that’s okay as I can simply purchase next years game and import my career so I can continue on.
The rest of the game is tight as well but I only play career mode. If you are a ‘The Show’ fan and play solely for career mode do yourself a favor and get a copy of MLB The Show 2014. Even if you’re not a career mode junkie like myself you can’t go wrong with MLB The Show 14.
Have to go as it’s time for me to get my CAREER ON LOL……………