On Thursday February 6, San Diego Studio will host its first and second Twitch streams highlighting some of the new features coming to MLB The Show this season. The team decided to treat the public to a sneak peak today, giving a quick glimpse into what to expect on Thursday’s shows. This week’s streams will highlight on-field defensive fundamentals, including new animations. The second stream will highlight some new introductions to the hitting engine, including a new “Perfect PCI-Perfect Timing” reward system at the plate.
Here’s what we learned today:
New Outfield Throw Indicator
- New this season, a needle will appear in the middle of the button accuracy meter, allowing for a perfect throw to home plate.
- Hitting this needle will ensure a perfectly accurate throw home, though one would assume you’re still at the mercy of that player’s throw power to gun guys down at the plate.
New Extreme Catch Indicator
- This new feature will help simulate a player’s instincts on tough-to-catch fly balls and sinking line drives.
- This will, in theory, provide a greater spectrum of performance between great defensive outfielders, and those who are a liability in the field.
First Step System
- The “First Step System” continues its expansion in MLB The Show 20, now with a greater variety of animations for fielders.
- This system will impact reactions times, first step animations.
- The hope is this system will help to continue building a bigger gap between the best fielders, and the worst.
- (Again this is not the same as good or bad jumps. Instead, it’s another element to try and differentiate good and bad fielders.)
New Fielding Animations
- To ensure the game covers as many gameplay situations as possible, hundreds of new defensive animations were added to this years’ game. This includes branching animations depending on the circumstances of the play and where you are on the field.
- This new hitting reward system should help the best players perform at high levels and shine.
- If your PCI and timing are both perfect, the game will trigger a perfect contact feedback grade. It remains to be seen if this means hits are guaranteed or if exit velocities are impacted, but the emphasis on rewarding a good performance at the plate is nevertheless exciting to see.
Button Accuracy Changes
- The trailer once again highlighted a new Button Accuracy meter, though it wasn’t clear what specifically had been changed about the feature.
- One thing appears assured, the green zone in the new meter is smaller and should be more difficult to hit consistently.
- The new meter is supposed to simulate the quick timing necessary to be a great fielder. It’s conceivable that elite animations will only be available if a player’s timing window is well before the play itself happens. We shall see.
We’ll have full coverage of Thursday streams. The first stream, highlighting defensive improvements, will take place at 11 a.m. PST over at the Sony San Diego Studio Twitch channel. The second, highlighting the new Perfect-Perfect reward system, will take place at 3 p.m. PST at the same place.