Bishop Tart: Gameplay is not too different from 2K11, but everything just feels a lot more smoother this year: animations, character models, etc. The overall gameplay is also still fun to play if you have always been a fan of the series. As one of the people who still use the classic control option, not much has changed on that end, but to me, that is perfectly acceptable.
Visually, the game looks similar to 2K11, but some of the player models do look better this year. With that said, they are still a step behind those of MLB: The Show. Also, the lighting looks much better this time around when compared to MLB 2K11.
With no commentary included in the demo and very little presentation, it's obviously hard to judge both of those. I just hope they stepped their game up with both to make a more authentic baseball experience -- because we all know the MLB 2K series lacks the presentation value seen in the MLB: The Show franchise.
As the only baseball game of its kind on the Xbox 360, you can't really go wrong with MLB 2K12. The demo does a great job of providing some of the experience you'll have in the full game next week.
The graphics have received a noticeable upgrade this season...the gameplay seems tweaked for sure.
Bo McCready: I really dislike the “OMG ANALOG CONTROLS” wave sweeping sports gaming, but I’ll admit begrudgingly that the analog controls feel good in this game. The power, contact and defensive swings become intuitive quickly, and analog pitching feels more responsive than ever.
The demo doesn’t feel that much different from last year’s effort, but there are a lot of little things I enjoyed. Any baseball game where you can draw a walk against the CPU without altering sliders wins points from me (if that seems ridiculous, remember trying to draw a walk in this series five or six years ago)?
When pitching, your pitch ratings fluctuate up and down depending on how effective you are throwing each one. At first, I loved the feature, as I made Neftali Feliz’s deadly two-seam fastball even more effective with a couple of early strikeouts. But then I induced a routine ground-out with a four-seam fastball and the game registered it as a double, cratering my four-seam rating. Hopefully those little glitches are ironed out before the full game releases.
There’s nothing in this demo that blew me away, but I’m having a good time with it.
Matthew Coe: Seeing as how this is one of my top five most anticipated sports games of 2012, I went into the demo just hoping not to be disappointed. Not only was disappointment not an issue, but I was pleasantly surprised by the implementation of a few of 2K12's new features.
I like the tightened up throw meter. On one occasion, a bunt by Rafael Furcal, catcher Mike Napoli had to really hurry to beat the speedy base runner. I had to make a fast decision and I overthrew the ball. It wound up in right field as it sailed past my first baseman and Furcal's speed got him to third base. The new pitch rating mechanic is well done too. It's not overdone, that I can tell, as I was worried it might be. This one tweak alone will help freshen up the pitching and make it a different experience from 2K11.
Speaking of 2K11, the demo does feel like a very polished version of last year's retail release, and I think that's kind of what 2K Sports was hoping for with the demo release. It doesn't take any steps back or show off any glaring weakness and it does highlight the additions for 2K12 well.
The demo does have a few nagging bugs, like being called out on a close play at first because my runner went into the "rounding the base" animation and a few other quirks that, as Bo said, will hopefully not be in the retail version.
Overall, with a distinct lack of presentation due to demo size, I came away fairly impressed. Not blown away, but not dissuaded from looking forward to the game's release.
MLB 2K12 isn't a huge improvement over 2K11, which may or may not be a good thing for you.
Phil Varckette: I was hopeful that the improvements to the game would be substantial, but unfortunately, in the demo anyway, they seem to me more subtle. This isn't a bad thing. It's what I should have expected in the first place.
The PS3 version seems to have gotten a graphical upgrade from last year, which is certainly a welcome surprise. The swing animations have improved and so has the outfield play. I also noticed more hit variety. It looks like 2K has at least kept their promises as far as gameplay is concerned.
One of the most glaring issues the series has had over recent years is the framerate. This issue is back. Its mostly noticeable on foul balls, but even still there is no excuse for it at this point.
Overall, the demo tells me the retail version will be an improvement over 2K11. Even if its subtle improvements, at least it's getting better.
Mike Kilroy: I was very excited when I downloaded the MLB 2K12 demo. After all, this was supposed to be the year when the title actually lived up to the hype.
Well ... not so fast.
While the demo showcases some mild improvements over previous incarnations, in my opinion, it doesn't do enough. Sure, the animations are smoother and the gameplay seems tighter, but I was still left with a sinking feeling of, 'Oh, no. Not again.' The graphics still seem bland to me and there is still a feeling that the game is just "off."
It's hard to glean a whole lot from a demo, but this one underwhelmed me.