Another feature receiving the upgrade treatment (if you can call it that) is the game’s use of 3D, well, on Sony’s 3DTV at least. MLB 12 is now the sixth title in the PlayStation 3 library to use SimulView Technology. The feature allows you and a pal to play against each other on the same display, forfeiting 3D in the process, but sans the screen peeking. I don’t own a PlayStation display myself, but if any one game is going to sell someone on this feature, or 3D gaming on the PS3 in general, The Show should be at the top of their list of reasons to own the set. Stereoscopic 3D is still on board for those of you out there, like myself, who find 2D gaming to be so 2009.
Also available this year is cloud support. No, it’s not to act as a safe haven to protect your precious game saves, it’s so you can take you’re game on the go with the PlayStation Vita. We’ll be putting up a review of the Vita version this week where I’ll go over the key differences and similarities between the two. If you need a sneak peak of that review, all you need to know is that it’s awesome. Make sure you stay tuned for that.
I’ve always referred to the series as sports’ best RPG, and this year is no different. Road to the Show is as addictive as ever, but believe it or not, it’s not the deepest mode this year. That honor will instead be bestowed upon the game’s “Diamond Dynasty” (DD) mode.
In all reality, I think I can review Diamond Dynasty as a stand alone title. It’s really that much to take into consideration and almost too much to cover to make it into this review. It takes team management and player progression to whole new levels. If you’re like me, a hardcore Road to the Show guy, Diamond Dynasty and all the baseball micromanagement that comes with it will be just what the doctor ordered.
Warning: baseball information overload. Does it make sense to say that the best features about The Show are also its biggest issues? Both RTTS and DD are very compelling modes, but I can’t imagine your average player delving into both too often.While I just raved about RTTS and DD, the problem with both (and well, the game in general) is that the barrier for entry is just too damn high.
Sure, a gamer and baseball lover such as myself will absolutely fall head over heals for that high level customization and depth. On the other hand, it’s hard to have an enjoyable pick up game with a non-gamer friend or family member who wants to just check out the title because he or she is a baseball fan. Sure, I can whip out the move controllers, but it shouldn’t be the only go to option.
The online functionality, like last year and the year before that, still continues to perform below standards. With a game about split second decisions (especially playing on All-Star or higher), there shouldn’t be as much lag as there is. To put things in perspective, I played against a friend in my city, both of us are on FiOS and our game still managed to be choppy as all hell. It stinks and if the game’s single player stuff wasn’t as good as it is, this would have shaved more points from the review.
To put all of this in perspective, I think it’s clear that MLB 12: The Show, places the series at the very top of it’s game. It’s a showcase not just for sports simulation but for video games in general. Right off the bat I proclaimed it a system seller, but don’t be surprised if it helps Sony sell some PlayStation displays, Moves, and PlayStation Vitas along the way. Sounds like it would make one hell of a bundle if I’ve ever seen one.