As a recently outed baseball enthusiast (go Mariners!) I take a lot of joy in writing this review.
For years I considered baseball to be a dying sport, and unbearably boring. Then I finally went to my first major league game and was hooked instantly. So, being all about baseball, I decided to pick up this game, to live out my new baseball fantasies. Even cooler, the cover athlete is all time Mariners great, Ken Griffey Jr. So let’s get into it. The good, and well, more of the good.
As a first timer, everything, even the returning game modes here are new to me. I’ll start with what’s actually new. MLB 17’s Road to the Show story mode Pave Your Path allows the player to custom create their own player and guide that one player to his career in the majors. This mode is complete with cutscenes and allows the player to make crucial decisions that will alter their career path. Comparatively, it is almost movie like compared to the rest of the game. Another new game mode is “Retro Mode” which is inspired by baseball simulators from the ’90s. This mode is played in classic 8-bit and features commentary by Ken Griffey Jr.
Making a return is Franchise mode, which for any of you who have played any Madden game ever, you know what Franchise mode is. Pick your favorite team, choose what role in the team to take on (manager, coach, owner), guide your team through the regular season and postseason. Along the way, make trades, negotiate player contracts and control your team throughout each game.
Diamond Dynasty also makes a return. Again, for those of you familiar with Madden, it essentially functions like Ultimate Team. Played like a cross between a card game and the regular game, the goal is to make the best team you can with player cards and then play against other people’s teams. Several legends of the game are included in Diamond Dynasty. Players like Barry Bonds, Derek Jeter, Mark McGwire and yes, Ken Griffey Jr himself. The legends however are usually only offered ion promotions or you may get lucky buying a card pack.
The graphics are second to none in this iteration. The game operates and looks very lifelike. Bats break, pitching animation is unique to match the real life motions of each and every pitcher, even each players batting stance and follow through are accurate to their real life counterparts. Matt Vasgersian returns in the commentary booth and is joined by Harold Reynolds and Dan Plesac. Even the presentation of the HUD is extremely similar to what the MLB Network shows on screen during real life baseball television presentations.
The game also has one of the most well made and most emotional opening scenes in sports game history. You can watch this video below at the bottom of this article.
For not being much of a sports gamer, this game has captured my emotions and I find myself absorbed in it every time I play. I didn’t really even want to stop playing to write this review, and being a sports game, there isn’t too much more I can say about it. So if you fancy a good old ballgame, look no further than MLB The Show 17. I give this game a
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