Out of the Park Baseball 11 Preview (PC)

Out of the Park Baseball has always attempted to be all things to all baseball text simmers. Want to replay past seasons, start a modern-day franchise or join an online league? It is all possible, and more, with Out of the Park (OOTP). OOTP 11 will soon be released, and it looks like the latest version will make the OOTP experience even more immersive.

OOTP Baseball is a text sim that puts you in control of a baseball franchise. The main feature of OOTP is the ability to customize the game how you want to play it. Whether you are into historical, modern-day, fictional or online play, OOTP lets you set your league’s rules, era, alignment, financial settings and so on to your liking. OOTP is generally acknowledged as one of the most in-depth text sims ever created. This makes the game difficult to summarize in a single paragraph, so let us just move right into the preview.

Improvements To Historical Play

I am very excited about the enhancements to historical play. OOTP 11 will feature a replay mode, which optimizes imported historical leagues for more accurate single-season replays. Historical players will receive more accurate and true-to-real-life ratings when initially imported, which will also mean better historical career play. OOTP 11 also has a feature that allows you to compare statistics and results compiled in your season to what actually happened during the corresponding season in real life.

Finally, historical defensive ratings have been improved, actual uniform numbers will import correctly, and an option was added to have players miss certain seasons according to their history (think Ted Williams missing time due to military service). These improvements sound even better once you consider the fact that OOTP does not require you to purchase season disks.



Fans of small-market teams know that even the MLB Amateur Draft can be a budget-busting venture. New in OOTP will be bonus demands for drafted players. Teams will have to consider whether they can afford to draft that top prospect who is demanding a huge signing bonus. Once the Draft is finished, you move into rookie negotiations where recommended salary slots are listed. Will your top pick agree to a contract in his recommended slot or can you possibly get him for less? Of course, there is always the chance he thinks he is worth more than the slot recommendation, which could lead to a tough negotiation. If you are unable to sign your top picks, you will get compensation picks in the following year’s Draft.

Contract negations with your major-league players have also been improved. Players will provide counter offers instead of simply accepting or rejecting what you offer them. Other improvements include team owners with unique personalities, team budgets and improvements to how the AI manages free-agent signings.

Finances in OOTP can sometimes make you scratch your head. In OOTP X, there was an issue where every team had huge deficits after a couple years when playing with the default major-league rosters and settings. It looks like the development team has attempted to make financials more true to life in OOTP 11. Let us hope that also results in less head scratching.

Recoded Fielding Engine

In real life, general managers are now using innovative defensive statistics and measurements to better evaluate defense. These same tools will be available to you in OOTP 11. Developers have added statistics such as zone rating, fielding efficiency and team fielding efficiency to better re-create the impact defense has on each ball in play and to help you better evaluate your team’s defensive strengths and weaknesses.

The pitching system was overhauled in OOTP X and the improvements were well-received by the community. The improved pitching will seem that much better with a recoded fielding engine and more tools and measurements to more accurately gauge how your defense impacts your pitching staff and overall run prevention.


What Else Is New?

Other improvements include a player-comparison tool for side-by-side comparisons of any two players throughout the history of baseball. Want to know even more about a player? OOTP 11 will generate a list of comparable players, even breaking the comp list down by age if requested.

No longer will it require multiple mouse clicks/drags to send a group of players to the minors. A mass-select tool will make transactions involving multiple players more user-friendly. There is also a new manager notes and reminders tool and expanded screens for league standings and team stats.

Rounding out the list of improvements is a 2010 roster set, advanced stats like OPS+ and ERA+ and the return of user control over base runners while playing out games.

Overall Improvements

There is not one new feature that immediately stands out and grabs your attention in OOTP 11, but the overall improvements throughout several areas of the game add up to make this version as highly anticipated as any other.

"Unlike last year, when there was a major overhaul of the pitching system, this year's version doesn't have one giant change," OOTP Developments team member Steve Battisti said. "As a result, I don't think there is one thing that blows me away. Instead, I think the totality of all of the changes together just make the game that much more enjoyable, no matter what kind of player you are."

OOTP 11 is scheduled for release in April. To learn more about the game and pre-order for a 25 percent discount, visit OOTP Developments.

Member Comments
# 1 hyde4us11 @ 03/23/10 10:37 AM
Can't wait to play this. My pre-order is in.
# 2 Brian Lannister @ 03/23/10 09:34 PM
@hyde4us11: me too.
# 3 Gleebo @ 03/23/10 09:34 PM
How do you import the historical past seasons?

You say "consider the fact that OOTP does not require you to purchase season disks." Can you expand a little on this?
# 4 Adam Czech @ 03/23/10 10:41 PM
Originally Posted by Gleebo
How do you import the historical past seasons?

You say "consider the fact that OOTP does not require you to purchase season disks." Can you expand a little on this?
There are third-party mods and databases that you can download and import into the game with all the historical teams and players. The game will generate ratings based on player's real-life stats and abilities. It's pretty simple, actually.

I would recommend visiting the forums over at ootpdevelopments.com to learn more. There's a pretty active community over there that can answer any qustions you might have.
# 5 ukslamjam @ 03/24/10 05:50 AM
I love this series. Pre-ordered and waiting for release! ;-)
# 6 Juiceman @ 03/24/10 10:26 AM
Pre-ordering for the first time. I started with OOTP 9, then played 10 quite a bit and immersed myself in the draft, rule 5 draft, arbitration, etc. That part of the game was so fun. Although, I'll admit I couldn't stay focused for 30 rounds of drafting, but hey that's why you can sim the rest.

One problem I had with OOTP 10 was getting unrealistic sim results in a few categories like RBI and Runs. So, with OOTP 11 the standout feature for me is the supposedly more true-to-life sim results. I like the idea of having an option in the game to compare to the "real life" stats.

This game is fantastic and I'm a guy who NEVER thought I could get into a text based game. And FWIW, I never play out games. I auto-play everything and it's still a blast to play.
# 7 Dark Cloud @ 03/24/10 03:28 PM
The game and series have come a long way. Still the best on the market warts and all. Should be another good addition to the series.
# 8 beedl001 @ 03/24/10 10:04 PM
These games usually have a slight learning curve to get them where you want to be, but if you have the time, the game is really fun and addictive.
# 9 DocHolliday @ 03/25/10 11:11 AM
This gonna be out for macs?
# 10 Juiceman @ 03/25/10 12:32 PM
Yes, and has been out for Mac in the past.
# 11 jaxpac @ 03/25/10 04:18 PM
After reading through the forums for The Show and 2k10 I am even more convinced that OOTP 11 is once again the way to go and will be the best baseball game this year.

All of the very basic franchise problems in those games pretty much reduce you to playing exhibition games if you want a realistic franchise. And for me at least you need the franchise play for a game to have any sort of lasting appeal.

Not to mention OOTP is a lot cheaper with the current pre-order discount going on...
# 12 Blublub @ 03/25/10 07:24 PM
Runs a dream on the Mac. You don't even need to bother searching for databases to run a historical sim - the Lahmann database is built-in.
# 13 hojusimpson @ 03/27/10 04:48 PM
To be fair, there was a known Mac glitch last year regarding licenses. An easy workaround existed and was posted: Unlicense the game when patching.

Other than that, it's very Mac-compatible and is a solid game. I was trying to avoid reading up on OOTP 11 only because I've barely scratched the surface in last year's release (a testament to the game's depth). As soon as I read about revamped draft, I knew I needed this year's game.

Oh, and regarding "advanced stats like OPS+ and ERA+" . . . For those interested in something a little more advanced, the game will also include wOBA, FIP and Zone Rating. Here's hoping for UZR too!
# 14 MachoMyers @ 03/28/10 08:31 AM
Already preordered. Knowing that OOTP is going to be released in APRIL is massive! Now if only I was playing OOTP 11 during opening day games!
# 15 Juiceman @ 03/29/10 03:22 PM
I read on the OOTP forums that they are using a different vendor for Mac licenses and so that glitch from last year should be non-existent this year!

I highly suggest the Road-to-Release articles over on OOTP website. It's got me pretty excited to play OOTP 11.
# 16 Matt Diesel @ 03/30/10 03:05 PM
A big thing for me is that the mac and pc licenses are interchangeable. You dont have to buy a mac and a pc version. The linux version is not interchangeable with mac or pc AFAIK.
# 17 sonn @ 03/30/10 05:52 PM
Looks like its nearing release.
Markus Heinsohn
Hey guys,

Just a small status update from my side... we are currently putting the finishing touches on the game, all reported bugs are squashed and the 2010 roster set is 99% done as well. So we're currently putting the game through its final test drive, and right now we're very pleased with its state

So, this means we will announce the official release date very soon, probably within the next couple of days.

This is a very exciting time for us. The game is the best OOTP ever (of course ) and is simply a lot of fun to play. I am very happy.

# 18 Matt Diesel @ 03/30/10 11:31 PM
I bet its out before Sunday , opening day.
# 19 Juiceman @ 04/01/10 11:11 AM
Release date is announced: ***** 14th (***** 12th for pre-orders)!
# 20 UGA14 @ 04/01/10 11:46 AM
Can't wait...

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