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    jp's Major League Baseball 2K12 (DS)

    [April 4, 2020 03:47:43 PM]
    This might be the first time I've played a licensed baseball game!

    I'm familiar enough with the sport - in terms of the basic rules and how it works - that I wasn't too worried about having to deal with that as a problem (would not be the case if I played a cricket or rugby game!), but I was surprised by how long it took me to understand the basic interface of the game (it didn't help that I took too long for me to realize that there was some help screens when you pause the game). Also, I lost horribly - which is ok considering how long it took me understand what was going on - but, perhaps I chose to play as a really bad team against a much better one? (I played with the 2012 Cubs - I know they won recently, but I'm pretty sure this was after 2012)

    Anyways, I thought I'd describe the game's interface - if anything that I may refer to it in the future because I thought it was pretty interesting.

    Well first, I was really surprised by how much the game runs on "automatic" (AI/NPCs). As a player there really isn't a lot you can do - which is fine! It makes the game move along much faster than it would otherwise!

    A. Pitching
    Half the game is pitching. For pitching you need to do three things. First you can move a little cursor using the directional buttons inside the pitch box - I have no idea what good strategy here is, but I assume that being really close to outside the box is good in that the batter is less likely to swing ('cause it's a ball)? Second, you choose which type of pitch - there are 5 options and what button to press is indicated on the top screen. Pressing a button for the 2nd part immediately starts the 3 thing you need to do - here a circle gets bigger and you need to keep the button you chose pressed. Let go of the button before the circle gets too big (turns red) and then, as it shrinks press it again when the circle is as small as possible. If you do it right (I think), the circle flashes green and you get a sound. I think the first circle (don't let go of button too early) is for strength/speed and the 2nd press is for accuracy.

    I was really confused by this because, early in the game I did the "correct" thing twice - and both times the batters hit homeruns. So, it looked like that was an easy pitch to hit? It felt like I couldn't have done anything better - other than perhaps choosing a different pitch? I wonder what sort of "insider" knowledge would have helped? (e.g. batter X is famous for hitting well against fast balls, don't pitch those!)

    The other thing I never caught on to is that apparently I do control one player in the field - so I might have been extra-bad 'cause I had one player who just stood there and did nothing? I never noticed this, so who knows if the player runs on auto but you can interrupt?

    B. Batting!

    You have three options of swinging - a power, normal or bunt. I'm not sure when/why I wouldn't choose power? Or normal? I think I understand bunt...
    Also, when the pitch comes in you can move a little circle inside the strike box. I thought that was to determine where you wanted to aim your hit - but apparently you're trying to guess where the pitch will come in, if you get it right, then you hit with extra power. Never figured that!

    You can also give instructions to your players to steal bases - but I never used this. It doesn't seem to happen all that often in real baseball games AFAIK? I could be wrong... I'm probably wrong.

    As I played the game I realized that, due to my lack of knowledge of pro baseball, the game might be largely inaccessible to me. It's really hard to tell how interesting/good the game is when a lot of the interesting decisions or choices rely on external knowledge of the sport. For example, when should I swap out a pitcher, how should I pick pitches, is it better to alternate/mix things up? Pitch to the batters weaknesses? Does the pitcher have those as well? This pitcher might be famous/well known for his curveball?

    So, the whole simulation under the hood really matters (how are players modeled, etc.) BUT that knowledge of what matters, how it matters, etc. is also super important! This all makes it seem like I will never make any progress or sense of Madden.
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    jp's Major League Baseball 2K12 (DS)

    Current Status: Stopped playing - Something better came along

    GameLog started on: Wednesday 1 April, 2020

    GameLog closed on: Saturday 4 April, 2020

    jp's opinion and rating for this game

    No comment, yet.

    Rating (out of 5):starstarstarstarstar

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