By now it's no secret. The exclusive license that Major League Baseball has with the 2k Sports franchise will soon become a thing of the past, opening the door for the very memorable MVP Baseball franchise to return. Despite a cult following to this day, many doubt the ability of EA sports to compete with the juggernaut of baseball video games known as MLB The Show. However while it may not be possible for EA to regain the former dominance it once had, here are a few features to help MVP Baseball get back into the swing of things if they take on the challenge.
Expand Owner Mode
Many remember the very popular Owner Mode from its incarnation in the 2005 version of the game. Many enjoyed the concept of building their own stadium from scratch for their favorite MLB team to use. As the mode progressed you got to manage the finances of the team, upgrade the stadium and eventually you would have a full fledged ballpark with a giant scoreboard in center field and fireworks exploding in the air after home runs. However this can be expanded by taking a page out of All Star Baseball's book. Allow the User to create an expansion team all the way down to which logo they use, where they play, what stadium they play in and ultimately what players they draft. At the time when it came out All Star baseball was praised for this option of an expansion team and really no other baseball game has come close to the depth that All Star baseball possessed. By combining the two modes you will be able to invent something that presents the player with hours upon hours of fun.
Introduce GM Philosophies and redefine Goals.
I always thought this would be an interesting concept. Allow us the player to choose how we want to manage our team and then assign us a list of goals to complete. Allow the user to choose whether he wants to manage the team like the Money ball Oakland Athletics, build through the farm system like the Kansas City Royals, or spend copious amounts of cash on washed up veterans like the New York Yankees
Bring Back the Legends.
One of my favorite things to do in the old baseball games were to take all the Legends, dump them into the free agent pool, and then proceed to do a fantasy draft. Allow this to happen once more but with a slight twist. Instead of bringing back individual legends use 2k's concept of teams in classic situations. Allow us to replay the game 3 of the 1932 world series featuring the Babe's infamous "Called Shot. Allow us to take control of certain historic moments in Americas pastime and recreate them with certain players and teams. In addition to thisinclude a team of players that never got the chance to play in an official MLB game. I'm talking about the Negro Leaguers, give us Josh Gibson, Cool Papa Bell and Buck Leonard. Allow the fans of today to experience a generation of players they never got the chance to see.
In Depth Career Mode
Both 2k Sports and SECA have presented us with fantastic Career modes in their respective sports games. Incorporate this feature into MVP Baseball. Allow us to make our way through rookie ball and eventually make it to the big leagues. Allow us to sign endorsement deals, purchase houses, buy cars. Enable us to discuss with various teams when we are free agents. Have post game interviews and most importantly give us goals to accomplish. Bring all the fame and the glory of a MLB superstar to us gamers and include everything you possibly can.
The Task is daunting there is no doubt about that. However with the right mindset and enough effort EA should be able to produce a product that will sell many copies and bring a smile to the face of sports gamers.
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