I play this game for one reason, mostly: Road to the Show.
I’ll be clear, Sony San Diego has added a TON of exciting new gameplay modes to MLB 16, and now that the servers are up and I can get into the other game modes I’ll get a review up for them as well as I play through them, but this review is going to focus on RTTS.
Read on after the jump!
MLB 16 The Show‘s Road to the Show is the best it’s ever been; it looks and feels better this year with a number of improvements to both the graphics and gameplay that should have fans of the long-standing game mode excited.
The biggest improvement for me is the ability to play through an entire series without loading. Gone are the days where you play a game, exit, train, “play next appearance”, wait for it to load, etc. In MLB 16 you simply start the first game of a series, then once its over, simply train with any points you received and push start. Voila! You’re in the next game without ever leaving the experience. Its made zipping through the long seasons much faster, so you can get to the late season games that really matter.
Another major upgrade is the new physically based rendering system, which uses how light reacts to metallic and non-metallic substances to create a realism not seen in MLB’s prior. The dugout concrete floors look scratchy and worn, while the Jays dugout top has the signature metal Chevron design. In general, this is clearly the best looking MLB I’ve seen – players are lifelike, a whole slew of new animations have been added including how players run based on their athleticism, home run swings and celebrations and how they take paths to fly balls. They’ve also added new cutscenes to the RTTS career, things like your player standing in the batters box before his first at-bat, surveying the scene or goofing around in the dugout in their major league debut. These scenes, while small, add just a little more immersion to the career mode, something that has been missing in the earlier games.
You can also select Open and closed roof options for Rogers Center, Chase Field, Minute Maid Park, Safeco Field, Miller Park and Marlins Park.
Showtime is new this year, and acts like a sort of bullet-time feature, allowing you to really dial in on that fastball, or line up the perfect diving catch. Activated by using the right trigger, you can slow down the action and really see what’s happening giving yourself the extra time to hit a ball with perfect timing – which, in clutch late game scenarios can mean the difference between a extra-base hit or an inning ending grounder to the shortstop.
Create a player has been upgraded again this year in terms of accessories and gear, but if you’re looking for EA’s Game Face feature or any sort of unique custom player face, you’re going to be disappointed. It’s the same generic looking face as always here. You can, however, paint a catchers finger nails to make his signs more visible, or use matte colored batting helmets on teams that use them in real life (the Pirates one looks particularly great). Pat Venditte‘s switch pitching is included as well, but it’s not an option on anyone else but him, and only when facing switch hitters.
Perks have been added this year, allowing players to unlock and equip unique in-game bonuses by training their stats. They fall under two types: Consumable perks can be used once per game, but you choose exactly when to use them. So you can make sure the pitcher throws his next pitch right down the middle for you to crush, or make the batter at the plate take a pitch so you can steal a base. Passive perks are just that, they are active once you equip it and last all game, including automatically giving you a 1-0 count in all at bats or other advantages that help you make the most out of a specific game.
All in all, as I’m predominantly a RTTS player, I’m happy with what Sony San Diego has come up with this year. The animations, textures and gameplay add-ons are solid and make an already great series even better. Not much farther to go in terms of quality here, so I’ll just throw out this idea: MLB The Show on Playstation VR. BEING the batter…come on San Diego, it’s gotta be in the works!
Let us know what you think in the comments!