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Major League Baseball 2K10 Preview

Baseball season is just around the corner (we are just a week away from Spring Training games!), and 2K Sports has been hard at work on its latest hardball offering, MLB 2K10. Operation Sports recently previewed the game, and now the masses (at least on the 360) will be getting their hands on the demo tomorrow. In other words, with just a few short weeks until release, it is now time for a What's Hot/What's Not feature. So what has got me excited about MLB 2K10, and what has me scratching my head? Read on to find out.

What’s Hot?


MLB Today Presentation

The addition of NBA Today in NBA 2K10 was clutch. This somewhat overlooked feature provided gamers with one of the best commentary-presentation combinations ever. Since the same technology is being implemented into MLB 2K10, MLB Today will presumably add a whole new dimension to the somewhat stagnant presentation found in the past couple 2K baseball games. Having statistical overlays and commentary that are constantly updated throughout the real MLB season is a dream come true for baseball fans. If the dynamic commentary aspects are as deep as those found in the game’s NBA counterpart, then this feature cannot miss.

Simplified Pitching System

2K’s Street Fighter-like pitching system may have sounded great on paper, but unfortunately it never worked quite right in the game. Being able to pick your pitch in 2K10 by pressing a button, and then implementing an analog-stick motion should go a long way towards making pitching more enjoyable. If anything, at least it will be nice not worrying about whether or not your initial analog-stick movement actually selected the pitch you wanted.

Revamped Franchise Mode

The ability to control all 30 teams, edit anything about a player, 40-man rosters, compensation picks and September call-ups are all great additions to the 2K franchise mode. Simply put, the folks at 2K finally seem poised to deliver an incredibly deep franchise mode that should keep gamers busy for many months. Franchise mode has been an incredibly weak aspect for the MLB 2K series during the past couple years, so this makes the additions to MLB 2K10 stand out even more.

 


MLB 2K10 has a lot going for it but....

What’s Not?


2K’s Recent Baseball Track Record

Let’s face it, aside from a somewhat solid foundation in MLB 2K7, the MLB 2K series has been on a slippery slope ever since. As much as I want to be excited about this year's newest additions, MLB 2K's track record means I am approaching the game with cautious optimism. Frame-rate issues, wonky animations, strange physics and a generally floaty sensation when controlling your players have all been issues that have plagued the franchise over the past three years. 2K is its own worst enemy when it comes to creating MLB games, and only time will tell if MLB 2K10 can break the string of mediocrity.

Online

2009 was a complete nightmare when it came to online stability for 2K's sports games. So with that in mind, I wonder if 2K can even provide a solid online experience on launch day (or at least within the first week of release). This issue is especially concerning when it comes to MLB 2K because baseball is a game where lag can not exist when playing online since timing is of the utmost importance. So here is to hoping that lag-free play and stable servers can be found in MLB 2K10.

Check Swing Resuscitation

Since the ad campaign for this game revolves around the pitcher vs. batter duel, it is perplexing that the ability to check swing while at the plate has to be added via a launch-day patch. As someone who relies on the check swing to work the count in baseball video games, I can not even fathom why 2K thought it would be a good idea to not initially include this critical option while at the plate. Is this oversight a sign that the MLB 2K developers are still missing the mark when it comes to the intricacies of the game, or was this oversight tied into the tweaked hitting controls? Time will tell, but hopefully every MLB 2K player out there has an Internet connection.


So what are you all looking forward to in MLB 2K10? What worries you at this point? Leave your thoughts below.

Major League Baseball 2K10 Videos
Member Comments
# 1 Tomba @ 02/22/10 12:21 PM
So even after PREVIEWING the game there is concern of framerate and animation glitches?


O U C H
 
# 2 tazbk @ 02/22/10 12:31 PM
Good analysis. I'm just waiting to give this game another try again. I own both systems and both games but I can't help but admit that I am a 2K fan stemming from the days of Dreamcast. I just want them to make a great baseball game because I enjoyed their basketball and football games for so many years.

Can't wait to use the MLB Today feature and even My Player.
 
# 3 Jimbo68 @ 02/22/10 12:33 PM
Every year, with all sports titles, I worry that what the producers/developers say is going to be in the game, usually isn't the case. Frame-rate issues with MLB 2K10 is a valid concern, as you mentioned with their track record. I do expect better graphics and presentation from one year to the next. I believe that graphics and gameplay are equally important in determining my joy while playing video games. Reason being, I've played video games since the late seventies, so I've seen generic graphics evolve into amazing graphics on the current systems as well as the PC. So, to not have good graphics just shows laziness to me.

So, with that said, I hope MLB 2K10 has amazing graphics, smooth frame-rate, enjoyable gameplay and a few other surprise bells and whistles. That's all I ask for. I tried MLB the Show the past two years and while the graphics/presentation is amazing, the gameplay seemed way off to me. Batters hardly ever swing at a pitch off the plate, too many pitches hitting the strike zone were called balls and the announcers would always say, "Don't know where that one missed!". And it seemed the computer would ALWAYS score early inning runs and late inning runs, as needed, in a close game. It had to be the most frustrating sports video game I've played in a very long time. Not sure if I'll try MLB the Show10 again this year or just go back to MLB2K10. I will certainly be reading the reviews this year and waiting a few weeks to see what average gamers are saying about each game.
 
# 4 Checmate101 @ 02/22/10 12:36 PM
Kind of worried abou tthat..
 
# 5 DontHateOnNumber2 @ 02/22/10 12:59 PM
I completely abandoned 2K9. I rented it and loved the simplified gesture pitching, but hated everything else. It was quite literally unplayable. I still play 2K8, but would be lying if I said I didn't have high expectations for 2K10. I don't expect it to be a great game, but I expect it to be miles better than 2K9, and have way less problems. It'd be nice to play a baseball sim on the 360 that didn't require a patch to enjoy it, you know?
 
# 6 nemesis04 @ 02/22/10 01:02 PM
I would say frame rate and overall game AI would be my two concerns at this point. We have been promised a smooth 60 FPS since 2k7 but to date we still have not had it.
 
# 7 Tomba @ 02/22/10 01:25 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by kcxiv
where is the framerate deal in that article? i heard him talk about MLB2K9's framerate?

Everything we have heard is the framerate is good this year at least from Game Informer.
The fact that they have previewed the game and there's STILL a "not -hot" about this is concerning..

Meaning they wouldn't have mentioned it IF it hadn't been and issue. Unless I'm wrong to see that chris hasn't seen it?
 
# 8 bigfnjoe96 @ 02/22/10 01:32 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tomba
The fact that they have previewed the game and there's STILL a "not -hot" about this is concerning..

Meaning they wouldn't have mentioned it IF it hadn't been and issue. Unless I'm wrong to see that chris hasn't seen it?
When Chris previewed the game it was still being finished. Optimization (Getting the game to run smoothly) is always the last thing done. Andrew Reiner from Game Informer has said the game is running very smoothly as he had a finished copy during his running blog of the game @ GI.
 
# 9 nemesis04 @ 02/22/10 01:40 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigfnjoe96
When Chris previewed the game it was still being finished. Optimization (Getting the game to run smoothly) is always the last thing done. Andrew Reiner from Game Informer has said the game is running very smoothly as he had a finished copy during his running blog of the game @ GI.
That was only for the 360 correct?
 
# 10 WarDawg58 @ 02/22/10 01:42 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by nemesis04
That was only for the 360 correct?
I think on his blog he is using the 360 version.
 
# 11 bigfnjoe96 @ 02/22/10 01:48 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by nemesis04
That was only for the 360 correct?
That I couldn't tell ya Nem.
 
# 12 jeffy777 @ 02/22/10 02:11 PM
hmmmm, I thought the online play was very good last year. The lag wasn't bad at all, and playing online actually bypassed alot of the game's problems (such as the AI issues).

2K8 on the other hand was simply unplayable online. But 2K9's multiplayer was like night and day compared to 2K8.
 
# 13 MMChrisS @ 02/22/10 02:18 PM
A few things to keep in mind for those wanting to jump to conclusions:

1)I simply submit the articles, I rarely write Previews/Reviews anymore as I typically stick to my blog here on OS, which I post at least a few times a week.

2)Hot or Not articles are simply used as a summation of the info we have, be it from hands on previews, other previews, etc. So the first item was merely a reflection on the point that we have thought MLB 2K looked to be turning the corner in the past and it's disappointed immensely. So it's more of a, don't believe the hype kind of mentality.

With that said, hopefully MLB 2K10 turns out to be rather good
 
# 14 jeffy777 @ 02/22/10 02:55 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by jayhawker
While there were some serious issues with 2K9 online in regards to the ease of hitting home runs, the lag was not a problem at all. It was the first baseball game I ever played where you could swing or take pitches based on whether they were strikes or not. Every other online game of baseball had so much lag that you had to decide to swing or not swing before the ball was released.
Exactly. Despite the game's other problems, VC should be applauded for the online portion of 2K9, and they did tone down the homeruns after the patches.

I'm very surprised that the author of the article said that the online play was bad last year......Maybe he's thinking about 2K8 instead, because the multiplayer was vastly improved last year and actually quite good.
 
# 15 daflyboys @ 02/22/10 02:58 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by DontHateOnNumber2
I completely abandoned 2K9. I rented it and loved the simplified gesture pitching, but hated everything else. It was quite literally unplayable. I still play 2K8, but would be lying if I said I didn't have high expectations for 2K10. I don't expect it to be a great game, but I expect it to be miles better than 2K9, and have way less problems. It'd be nice to play a baseball sim on the 360 that didn't require a patch to enjoy it, you know?

I don't understand a problem with a patch as long as it doesn't cause different headaches while fixing others. Successful patches show the co. is trying to pay attention to details missed. If it enhances the game, and the earlier, the better......then fine.
 
# 16 32 @ 02/22/10 03:05 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by daflyboys
I don't understand a problem with a patch as long as it doesn't cause different headaches while fixing others. Successful patches show the co. is trying to pay attention to details missed. If it enhances the game, and the earlier, the better......then fine.
This. There are a lot of games that have release day patches. Or even after a week or so. I'm seeing the big deal either. I guess thier rep is all anyone is going on.

There's a link to someone has been playing the final copy for weeks now. And, not once did he mention anything about a frame rate issue or check swing issue. Granted he was playing the pitcher role during "My Player" but, he's had to hit during those games.

I think we all need to stop jumping to conclusions and wait until tomorrow when the demo drops.
 
# 17 Tomba @ 02/22/10 04:11 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by MMChrisS
A few things to keep in mind for those wanting to jump to conclusions:

1)I simply submit the articles, I rarely write Previews/Reviews anymore as I typically stick to my blog here on OS, which I post at least a few times a week.

2)Hot or Not articles are simply used as a summation of the info we have, be it from hands on previews, other previews, etc. So the first item was merely a reflection on the point that we have thought MLB 2K looked to be turning the corner in the past and it's disappointed immensely. So it's more of a, don't believe the hype kind of mentality.

With that said, hopefully MLB 2K10 turns out to be rather good
Thanks for the clarification. makes me feel a bit better now about the game actually...cool...
 
# 18 SDwinder @ 02/22/10 04:54 PM
The check swing never worked correctly with the Swingstick method in 2K baseball games anyways, so leaving it out was really a non-issue. The mechanics dont allow you to check your swing intuitively.
 
# 19 tril @ 02/22/10 05:28 PM
glad to see that 2k is patching the check swing.
omitting this feature was ridiculous idea in the first place. I dont understand why this feature would be omitted.

From the videos Ive seen, it seems as though cut scenes are back, and that would be a huge disappointment.
last years real time feel to the game was a breath of fresh air.
I was probably one of the few who enjoyed last years version, once it was discovered that the majority of the problems was due to the pitcher composure sliders.

I look forward to this years PC version.
2k, all day
 
# 20 tril @ 02/22/10 05:35 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by jayhawker
That's not true, at least for 2K9. I ended up having a lot of checked swings, and they worked as intuitively as possible. I'd start swinging, change my mind, instinctively pull back on the stick and it would generate the check swing animation. I've had them call the called strikes and balls, swinging strikes, and I've chipped the ball fair and foul.
cosign. I think the timing may have been to difficult to pull of consistently, but it did work.
 

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