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MLB The Show 21 Quick Q&A Video - Hitting and Pitching Feature Premiere Coming Thursday

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MLB The Show 21

MLB The Show 21 Quick Q&A Video - Hitting and Pitching Feature Premiere Coming Thursday

Sony San Diego has posted a quick Q&A session with Coach and Ramone, as they discuss some of the gameplay changes in MLB The Show 21. You can watch the video below, but we’ve also listed some of the key points.

  • Casual mode is an easy, fun, pick up and play experience, focusing on learning the game of baseball.
  • Check swing strike frequency has been tuned. More details coming in the feature premiere.
  • Yes, there will still be variable pitch speeds between difficulty levels.
  • An updated hitting engine has improved Perfect Perfect hitting.
  • There are more player and team specific animations.
  • The completely new pitching style is called Pinpoint Pitching .
  • The onboarding experience has been completely revamped for the noobs.
  • Yes, you can change pitching styles, just like previous games.
  • Perfect throw meters to all bases did not make it in this year.
  • Inputs on the pitching meter matter more this year. Perfect Perfect Pitching? Not exactly, but more details coming in the feature premiere.
  • Coach sobs, then feels hungry, The End.

The Hitting and Pitching Feature Premiere is set to arrive on Thursday, so keep your eyes open for that.

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  1. Well I guess we need to put our faith in SDS's ability to create separate play styles (casual, sim, comp) because we'll be screwed otherwise. They are really pushing to get the casuals playing the game.
    jrnlgrn
    Well I guess we need to put our faith in SDS's ability to create separate play styles (casual, sim, comp) because we'll be screwed otherwise. They are really pushing to get the casuals playing the game.

    Maybe what they have planned for different styles works, maybe it doesn’t, but it’s worth a shot. Years of feedback have only shown that everyone plays the game differently (even among the subgroups this forum likes to break into), and they’ve had trouble at times balancing different wants.
    I’m sure they’re also expecting a bunch of new players who maybe haven’t played a baseball game since 2K13, and giving them different styles find what they like best isn’t a bad idea.
    jrnlgrn
    Well I guess we need to put our faith in SDS's ability to create separate play styles (casual, sim, comp) because we'll be screwed otherwise. They are really pushing to get the casuals playing the game.

    Nothing new, phases generic pitch counts MTO Moments yes. indeed each year they want to make it more casual it is concerning.
    For the record I have no problem with the different play styles I think it's a great idea, if it works like it should. My only experience with such a mechanic is Madden '18 and IMO it wasn't very good then.
    As far as the casual thing it's just weird to make this a major part of your promotional material. I've never seen a game advertise onboarding as a feature.
    Speedy
    No meter to the bases now?

    I think the key part of that question was the "perfect" mention - Ramone was answering that there wouldn't be a perfect throw mark on the accuracy meter for all throws like there is for cutoffs and throws to home.
    Interesting that check swing frequency has been changed, which is almost guaranteed to mean they made it harder to do. I think even those of us who play exclusively offline can agree that it's too easy to check even normal swings (and if you've ever gotten tired of the frequency of the appeal to the 1st or 3rd base umpire you have your answer on that :) ), so you can imagine how the competitive crowd feels about that. For me personally, I don't even really do it on purpose - it's more of a reflex, and if they did change this it's something I'm going to have to relearn somewhat.
    Looking forward to the gameplay feature on Thursday.
    jrnlgrn
    Well I guess we need to put our faith in SDS's ability to create separate play styles (casual, sim, comp) because we'll be screwed otherwise. They are really pushing to get the casuals playing the game.

    Question....does this eliminate the difficulty levels in gameplay options, i.e., Veteran/All Star/HOF/Legend????
    KnightTemplar
    Question....does this eliminate the difficulty levels in gameplay options, i.e., Veteran/All Star/HOF/Legend????
    No. I think Ramone even says difficulty isn't going away in the vid. It's supposed to separate the gameplay. For example hopefully offline will no longer be affected by what DD players want. I'm hoping this means they can get rid of rocket bunts or even add back in the guy at first actually covering the base instead of letting the 3 speed pitcher reach the base on a shallow hit.
    jrnlgrn
    No. I think Ramone even says difficulty isn't going away in the vid. It's supposed to separate the gameplay. For example hopefully offline will no longer be affected by what DD players want. I'm hoping this means they can get rid of rocket bunts or even add back in the guy at first actually covering the base instead of letting the 3 speed pitcher reach the base on a shallow hit.

    LOL, I needed to hear a good joke.
    bcruise
    I think the key part of that question was the "perfect" mention - Ramone was answering that there wouldn't be a perfect throw mark on the accuracy meter for all throws like there is for cutoffs and throws to home.
    Interesting that check swing frequency has been changed, which is almost guaranteed to mean they made it harder to do. I think even those of us who play exclusively offline can agree that it's too easy to check even normal swings (and if you've ever gotten tired of the frequency of the appeal to the 1st or 3rd base umpire you have your answer on that :) ), so you can imagine how the competitive crowd feels about that. For me personally, I don't even really do it on purpose - it's more of a reflex, and if they did change this it's something I'm going to have to relearn somewhat.
    Looking forward to the gameplay feature on Thursday.

    Me too!’ And 9 times out of 10 the appeal is a ball ok a master of it and Get lots of walls! Agree it’s a reflex thing the change ups screw me up with it most times
    Quentin32
    Dang
    I was hoping for dual sense pitching & hitting as a option with the triggers

    I would tune into the stream on Thursday to see if this is added, which I'm thinking it will be in some fashion.
    Will I Am
    Not liking the words "pinpoint pitching".

    Pinpoint Pitching is a new pitching mechanic to go along with meter, classic, analog, and pulse. Its an adaptation from 2K's pitching mechanic.
    jrnlgrn
    Well I guess we need to put our faith in SDS's ability to create separate play styles (casual, sim, comp) because we'll be screwed otherwise. They are really pushing to get the casuals playing the game.

    The cynic in me says that it’s simply a rebranding and sorting of the existing game modes into these three categories.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    jrnlgrn
    No. I think Ramone even says difficulty isn't going away in the vid. It's supposed to separate the gameplay. For example hopefully offline will no longer be affected by what DD players want. I'm hoping this means they can get rid of rocket bunts or even add back in the guy at first actually covering the base instead of letting the 3 speed pitcher reach the base on a shallow hit.

    The onboarding options sound like preset difficulty and settings. Hasn't this "style" been in the game for a while? Usually I set up my "experienced" profile and make the normal adjustment. Not a critique, but how is this any different?
    Re: difficulty levels, I think Ramone was answer a question about pitch speeds increasing as you select higher difficulties
    jrnlgrn
    Well I guess we need to put our faith in SDS's ability to create separate play styles (casual, sim, comp) because we'll be screwed otherwise. They are really pushing to get the casuals playing the game.

    I think this is really important, especially since we're bringing Xbox gamers to this series for the first time.
    Will I Am
    Well pitching isn't pinpoint if you know what I mean. Sounds like something easily mastered. Guess we'll find out.

    I see what you mean in that if you learn how to absolutely nail your pitches that I hope it still doesn't go exactly as intended all the time, because that is putting user skill way above any pitching attributes (of course, the worse the pitcher the more difficult the control).
    I do hope this is adopted from 2K8 as much as possible though, and not 2K9. 2K9 only had power and gesture, but removed timing. I mean they can make the whole scheme different, but that third layer was an extremely welcomed challenge. The meatball thing was a bit ridiculous though.
    Currently, the best pitching mechanic I've ever experience is in Super Mega Baseball 3, followed closely by 2K8 (or maybe the other way around). Let's see if this can best those two.
    I'm not worried about the difficulty being too easy. The harder difficulties have always been challenging (IMO), not to mention what you can do with Sliders.
    TheBleedingRed21
    Goodluck mastering the pinpoint mechanic. Tougher than any of the other mechanics. Wait till you play with it before judging it.

    I didn't know anyone had been able to try it out. Still a dumb name, if it's difficult called it Unpinpoint pitching.
    Red_Ted_is_back
    The cynic in me says that it’s simply a rebranding and sorting of the existing game modes into these three categories.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    Casual, Sim, Comp play styles are an actual new setting you can adjust.
    Will I Am
    I didn't know anyone had been able to try it out. Still a dumb name, if it's difficult called it Unpinpoint pitching.

    It’s probably called that because you move the stick around to “points” and then bring it down to another “point”. Pinpoint makes perfect sense for it.
    Will I Am
    I didn't know anyone had been able to try it out. Still a dumb name, if it's difficult called it Unpinpoint pitching.
    People who played the tech test got to try it out.
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
    TheBleedingRed21
    It’s probably called that because you move the stick around to “points” and then bring it down to another “point”. Pinpoint makes perfect sense for it.

    Please tell me that 2k's giant orange ring doesn't flash on a perfect release.
    marinofan
    I hope they still keep the same old pitching mechanics as options.

    Its mentioned in the short video but they did not remove any previous pitching mechanics
    bcruise
    I think the key part of that question was the "perfect" mention - Ramone was answering that there wouldn't be a perfect throw mark on the accuracy meter for all throws like there is for cutoffs and throws to home.
    Interesting that check swing frequency has been changed, which is almost guaranteed to mean they made it harder to do. I think even those of us who play exclusively offline can agree that it's too easy to check even normal swings (and if you've ever gotten tired of the frequency of the appeal to the 1st or 3rd base umpire you have your answer on that :) ), so you can imagine how the competitive crowd feels about that. For me personally, I don't even really do it on purpose - it's more of a reflex, and if they did change this it's something I'm going to have to relearn somewhat.
    Looking forward to the gameplay feature on Thursday.

    Check swinging is a HUGE HUGE part of real life baseball.
    If they are giving into online whiners.....this is where the game is going down a road I hope does not affect offline players....and it seems it will.
    EG - Bunting.
    Yes I am able to sac bunt with the right guys sometimes and with pitchers sometimes.....but man....it is a test where as before MLB 17 it was more forgiving and more realistic actually. Because of bunt cheese...it affected offline players.
    This is where sports games have gone and have been trending the last 5-7 years with E-Sports and online competitive. I get it. But I don’t have to like it.
    Red_Ted_is_back
    The cynic in me says that it’s simply a rebranding and sorting of the existing game modes into these three categories.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports

    Exactly what it is. I am not concerned about it like I initially was.
    Armor and Sword
    Check swinging is a HUGE HUGE part of real life baseball.
    If they are giving into online whiners.....this is where the game is going down a road I hope does not affect offline players....and it seems it will.
    EG - Bunting.
    Yes I am able to sac bunt with the right guys sometimes and with pitchers sometimes.....but man....it is a test where as before MLB 17 it was more forgiving and more realistic actually. Because of bunt cheese...it affected offline players.
    This is where sports games have gone and have been trending the last 5-7 years with E-Sports and online competitive. I get it. But I don’t have to like it.

    So, here's my take on check swinging as it is right now (meaning '20 ) as an offline player: The rating that's supposed to control how successful it is - Discipline - doesn't really do anything. As long as I tap the button, identify ball or strike and then let off it right away if it's a ball I can check with practically any hitter on normal swings. I've even checked some power swings which is pretty absurd. User skill is overriding ratings in this part of the game right now, and that's why I think they're going to make it harder. It just so happens that that also falls in line with the competitive complaints. I hope it's not globally tougher across the board - only tougher with hitters of low discipline, because that's supposed to be how the rating works.
    This isn't the only part of the game where I feel like ratings don't have enough of an effect - fielding and throwing are other big ones, as well as bunting that's been mentioned which is still a sore spot - but at least with fielding and throwing I can play auto fielding or buttons throwing and ratings will still matter there. I can't "auto" batting, nor would I want to.
    countryboy
    The quick Q&A video is out.
    The deep dive/stream starts at 6pm EST / 3pm PT
    Is it going to be on Twitch still like every year?
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
    bcruise
    So, here's my take on check swinging as it is right now (meaning '20 ) as an offline player: The rating that's supposed to control how successful it is - Discipline - doesn't really do anything. As long as I tap the button, identify ball or strike and then let off it right away if it's a ball I can check with practically any hitter on normal swings. I've even checked some power swings which is pretty absurd. User skill is overriding ratings in this part of the game right now, and that's why I think they're going to make it harder. It just so happens that that also falls in line with the competitive complaints. I hope it's not globally tougher across the board - only tougher with hitters of low discipline, because that's supposed to be how the rating works.
    This isn't the only part of the game where I feel like ratings don't have enough of an effect - fielding and throwing are other big ones - but at least with those I can play auto fielding or buttons throwing and ratings will still matter there. I can't "auto" batting, nor would I want to.

    Fair take man. Let’s hope it is toed to ratings heavily. I am on board with that!!
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    BCruise....just heard all about check swings on the stream.
    All user inout driven now....discipline is a turfed rating.
    No ratings play into it at all.
    So there goes that. Stick skills are invading.
    Fortunately with pitching....classic is unaffected with Par.
    Anyway people should listen for themselves on this stream.
    Also the back end engine changes depending on the play style you pick son according to SDS Simulation is the version we have always played and according to them unchanged.
    Also dynamic difficulty has been tweaked and I am really intrigued about it because now you can start on HOF and see if it advances you or demotes you. So people can really lock into what skill level they are and not t crazy slideritis like some do (I don’t).
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    Having checks purely based on user input seems an interesting choice. I'm not sure I like the idea. So if IRL a player historically couldn't check to save his life now he can if the user is good enough and same in reverse. Something I need to see in action for myself I guess. So the computer still has to use a discipline rating because there's no user?
    jrnlgrn
    Having checks purely based on user input seems an interesting choice. I'm not sure I like the idea. So if IRL a player historically couldn't check to save his life now he can if the user is good enough and same in reverse. Something I need to see in action for myself I guess. So the computer still has to use a discipline rating because there's no user.

    Again....this is a perfect example of how we want simulation (not competitive or casual) but they remove the rating having any impact. How is that simulation?
    I thought the backend engine defaults to your game style choice?
    Like Madden this is going to be a fail for simulation players. Slowly but surely they are changing the game for online competitive and casual kids.
    Our fears are starting to become a reality potentially.
    We don’t really know till we play it. But speaking from experience I am a good check swinger and this will potentially make it even easier.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    Armor and Sword
    BCruise....just heard all about check swings on the stream.
    All user inout driven now....discipline is a turfed rating.
    No ratings play into it at all.
    So there goes that. Stick skills are invading.
    Fortunately with pitching....classic is unaffected with Par.
    Anyway people should listen for themselves on this stream.
    Also the back end engine changes depending on the play style you pick son according to SDS Simulation is the version we have always played and according to them unchanged.
    Also dynamic difficulty has been tweaked and I am really intrigued about it because now you can start on HOF and see if it advances you or demotes you. So people can really lock into what skill level they are and not t crazy slideritis like some do (I don’t).
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports

    It is what it is...they went in the exact opposite direction I was expecting on check swings. And that's kind of a surprise having played the test and apparently experienced that (I'm still going to be pretty mum on my personal experiences there unless I get an OK to talk about it, sorry).
    This I can say without getting into my own experiences and sticking to what they said in the feature - there definitely aren't many changes for classic/directional users in hitting and pitching, and those that do exist apparently tilt towards user control over ratings.
    Pinpoint looks fun, and I'm surprised that meter is the 2nd most accurate pitching interface (and not pure analog - rude awakening for the legions of online players that use it). Need to hear more about differences between gameplay styles - they already gave us more details in those than the madden team did.
    Oh, and custom practice is a huge W.
    Armor and Sword
    Again....this is a perfect example of how we want simulation (not competitive or casual) but they remove the rating having any impact. How is that simulation?

    Without knowing how much of the previous formula was player skill vs discipline rating, how can we say what’s really been lost?
    bcruise
    This I can say without getting into my own experiences and sticking to what they said in the feature - there definitely aren't many changes for classic/directional users in hitting and pitching, and those that do exist apparently tilt towards user control over ratings.

    Like you (without getting into personal experience with it), I wouldn’t expect many changes for classic/directional. It sounds like something that, had they not mentioned it, would be difficult to even notice in gameplay.
    Anyone else noticed the framerates chugging at times during gameplay? I really hope that’s not the case on the next gen consoles. I love how smooth mlb 20 is on the PS5.
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    SmashMan
    Without knowing how much of the previous formula was player skill vs discipline rating, how can we say what’s really been lost?
    Like you (without getting into personal experience with it), I wouldn’t expect many changes for classic/directional. It sounds like something that, had they not mentioned it, would be difficult to even notice in gameplay.

    I don’t disagree with that. We don’t really know until we play the game itself. It is just discouraging to hear what I felt was the general direction of the game itself.
    I am pretty confident classic/directional will be virtually unchanged....but bunting was contaminated by online sentiment and now check swings are potentially being contaminated by online sentiment.
    Whats next?
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    Artman22
    Anyone else noticed the framerates chugging at times during gameplay? I really hope that’s not the case on the next gen consoles. I love how smooth mlb 20 is on the PS5.
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    It more than likely had to do with stream lag more than anything.
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
    The game is 60FPS and not a drop less on PS5 (at least Tech Test was, no reason it would be otherwise in retail). Never pay attention to stream hiccups. It is normal. I think people underestimate the power that is in the next gen consoles (not referring to you, Artman, just in general), MLB The Show is NOWHERE near testing it AT ALL.
    so is discipline tied to anything tangible outside of simming a game or season?
    I've long believed the discipline attribute was pretty much meant to be disregarded while actually batting with a player because no matter how high or low the rating, my own personal plate discipline would affect every one of my plate appearances no matter who I bat with.
    I'm not really a check swinger myself. I'm all in when I'm committed to swing. I don't want any accidental weak grounders by trying to half swing.
    now, when I pitch against a batter, I guess that's when the attribute will kick in, outside of simming a game or season?
    Caulfield
    so is discipline tied to anything tangible outside of simming a game or season?
    I've long believed the discipline attribute was pretty much meant to be disregarded while actually batting with a player because no matter how high or low the rating, my own personal plate discipline would affect every one of my plate appearances no matter who I bat with.
    I'm not really a check swinger myself. I'm all in when I'm committed to swing. I don't want any accidental weak grounders by trying to half swing.
    now, when I pitch against a batter, I guess that's when the attribute will kick in, outside of simming a game or season?

    Applies to the cpu opponent for sure and your ability as the user to check swing/hold up.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    I know there are too many different cameras to make this a thing, but I really do wish there was an attribute (vision, discipline, etc.) tied into the kind of camera angle swivel you'd receive as a batter against the pitcher you're facing, thus making it easier/harder to read certain pitches based on that hitter. Pitchers can also help cause the negative effect if they have that kind of real life ability (such as lefty specialists).
    It could in effect look a little something like this. See the screenshots below comparing the angles for Dee Gordon, Christian Yelich, and Justin Bour against Madison Bumgarner (where Gordon has the best vision and Bour has the worst):


    Blzer
    I know there are too many different cameras to make this a thing, but I really do wish there was an attribute (vision, discipline, etc.) tied into the kind of camera angle swivel you'd receive as a batter against the pitcher you're facing, thus making it easier/harder to read certain pitches based on that hitter. Pitchers can also help cause the negative effect if they have that kind of real life ability (such as lefty specialists).
    It could in effect look a little something like this. See the screenshots below comparing the angles for Dee Gordon, Christian Yelich, and Justin Bour against Madison Bumgarner (where Gordon has the best vision and Bour has the worst):



    That is a really cool idea Blzer!!!
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    I don't think check swings should be completely based on user input outside of head to head play with another user. I'm someone who really never had a lot of issues before. Yeah it seemed random, but if I use the same tap/release mechanic for someone like LeMahieu as I did someone like Starling Marte, I'd notice that more times than not the outcome would make sense.
    So I went back into the tech test last night for some batting practice, just to see if I could notice the change. I definitely did, and now you gotta be super precise because they really took the rating out. I was using Altuve as my tester and so I checked at balls in the dirt a bunch of times. It's definitely noticeable and you have to be quick and forceful. That "margin for error" that existed with high discipline guys is gone now and it still doesn't make sense for offline play. To me at least.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    ^ Can you (or anybody else) confirm for me what you're alluding to though when you're stating what happens if you swing for a bit longer than that? Are you stating that the batter swings, or that his commitment to swing is confirmed by the base umpire?
    If the latter, I turn off check swing appeals anyway (because yes, I found that to be a dice roll in the past and unaffected by myself or player ratings). So if that's what this is about and it's about the swing being confirmed rather than the swing actually occurring, like a player going all out and actually following through... then I don't know if this is a concern of mine given how I play, anyway.
    Armor and Sword
    That is a really cool idea Blzer!!!
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports

    Thanks, but I think one year later they gave us the fisheye camera, so I'm guessing it would be less effective there, and would take so much more to do in an algorithm.
    My guess is if they ever did this, it would be one preset camera type and non-customizable.
    Blzer
    ^ Can you (or anybody else) confirm for me what you're alluding to though when you're stating what happens if you swing for a bit longer than that? Are you stating that the batter swings, or that his commitment to swing is confirmed by the base umpire?
    If the latter, I turn off check swing appeals anyway (because yes, I found that to be a dice roll in the past and unaffected by myself or player ratings). So if that's what this is about and it's about the swing being confirmed rather than the swing actually occurring, like a player going all out and actually following through... then I don't know if this is a concern of mine given how I play, anyway.
    Thanks, but I think one year later they gave us the fisheye camera, so I'm guessing it would be less effective there, and would take so much more to do in an algorithm.
    My guess is if they ever did this, it would be one preset camera type and non-customizable.

    I should've been clearer, my bad. I mean the player actually swings thru. Like what used to just be a flinch for a high discipline player is now a gross-looking lunge if you aren't careful with how quick you are. I use the Pirates mostly and a check swing with Adam Frazier with just a quick button release was always just a flinch. Maybe a quarter swing. Now (at least on the beta for 21) the same thing gets you at least a goofy half swing but usually a complete follow through.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports

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