MLB 13: The Show Review for PlayStation 3 (PS3)

MLB 13: The Show Review for PlayStation 3 (PS3)

Showing Up The Competition

When I first opened up my copy of MLB 13: The show, I said to myself, “What have I gotten myself into?” See, I’m not really much of a baseball enthusiast. But after many hours of gameplay, something happened that I hadn’t counted on. MLB 13: The Show made me like it.

Being the baseball “noob” that I was, I figured that the logical starting point for me would be in training mode. It was a good move, too, because I was horrible at this game. In the beginning, I would swing at every pitch in batting practice. My pitching was atrocious and I delivered fastballs to hitters on a silver platter.

MLB 13: The Show Screenshot

Then something happened. I got better. I was finally making hits and striking out batters. Not all the time, but enough to make me feel like a little less of a loser. After many rounds of practice, I was finally confident enough to try a full game. So with my fingers crossed and my lucky rabbit foot in my pocket, I dove in to the world of simulation baseball.

What I found was an excellent baseball game chock full of features that will have even longtime fans feeling satisfied. Aside from the standard single game and season modes, the fan-favorite Road to the Show mode makes a well-deserved reappearance in the main menu.

MLB 13: The Show Screenshot

In Road to the Show, you create your own player and start him on a journey from rags to riches. Starting out at a farm team, you work your way up through the rankings and ultimately to the majors. I found myself playing this mode far longer than I thought I ever would, just so I could see my little guy make it to the big leagues. I was so proud.

Postseason Mode, which is new to the series, lets you skip the lengthy season process and get straight to the action: the playoffs. In this mode, you can choose to control one or all ten teams in the playoffs and chart your path to the World Series. Customizable round lengths make this mode as deep as you want it to be, with options for best of three, five, or seven games. No longer do you have to sim an entire season to get to this point; it’s already there for you.

MLB 13: The Show Screenshot

Still, my favorite game mode has to be Home Run Derby. Here you can swing away alone or with friends in a battle to see who has the best swing in an all-out competition of humiliation and bragging rights. It’s cool, but I always ask myself the same question while playing it: “Why can’t my team hit like this during a normal game?”

Visually, the level of detail here is fantastic. Player models and animations are believable and detailed, matching their real-world counterparts as closely as possible. Stadiums are painstakingly re-created and come to life with every hoorah or boo of the crowd. Even the presentation of the game, through the perspective cameras, looked almost like a real baseball game.

MLB 13: The Show Screenshot

Whether pitching, batting, or fielding, the controls are ironclad. With a variety of ways to control your players in any facet of the game, you can create your own truly unique experience based solely on your preferences. For example, you can choose to use the face buttons for hitting or you can use the analog sticks to execute your swing. While none of these features are really new, they are consistent and refined, making it easy for a rookie like me to take it on at my own pace.

The sounds of The Show are all there, from the cracking of the bats to the screaming of the fans, but the commentary just isn’t up to par. In fact, it can become downright annoying. The announcers are dry, monotone, and boring, and you can’t care less about what they were going to say because they’ve already said it a million times.

Altogether, MLB 13: The Show has shown us that it can remain among the top simulation sports games in the industry. An excellent visual package and a versatile control scheme help to set it apart from its competition and secure it a spot on store shelves for years to come.

Stadiums are amazingly realistic and player models are accurate down to the smallest detail. 4.7 Control
Ironclad controls are the basis for the success of The Show. A variety of player control options puts you in control of how you play. 4.0 Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The drab commentary is like pock marks on an otherwise solid soundscape. 4.5 Play Value
The Show has something for everybody, with game modes that will satisfy the biggest baseball fans and casual gamers alike. 4.3 Overall Rating – Great
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.

Review Rating Legend
0.1 – 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 – 2.9 = Average 3.5 – 3.9 = Good 4.5 – 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 – 2.4 = Poor 3.0 – 3.4 = Fair 4.0 – 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • Revamped Franchise and Road To The Show modes with expanded options and new gameplay experiences.
  • All-New Playoff Mode includes an unparalleled in-stadium atmosphere that replicates the excitement and tension of October baseball.
  • Completely new beginner mode and instructional enhancements make The Show the best pick-up and play baseball experience.
  • Improved Play Now mode streamlines gameplay for the option to play faster, simpler games.
  • Save files between the PS3 and the PS Vita via the PlayStation Network. Sync your Season, Franchise and Road to the Show saves and load them on either platform to continue the action anywhere.

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