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MLB The Show 21 Road to the Show and Ballplayer Details Revealed

mlb the show 21 ballplayer

MLB The Show 21

MLB The Show 21 Road to the Show and Ballplayer Details Revealed

Thursday’s feature premiere from San Diego Studio revolved around Road to the Show and the Ballplayer feature coming to MLB The Show 21. Maybe the biggest takeaway from the entire showcase was that your Road to the Show Ballplayer will be utilized across several game modes in several new ways, while the single-player component has a richer dynamic story path.

MLB The Show 21 Ballplayer And Road To The Show Feature Premiere

Deeper Narrative

Before we get too far into how those systems will communicate, let’s discuss what’s new to the Road to the Show narrative experience in MLB The Show 21.

In MLB The Show 20 and the previous iterations of the game, community feedback suggested the mode just got stale. There was little feeling of immersion and it lacked a feeling of accomplishment outside of your own little player in his vacuum. Developers poured a lot of hours into those gripes this year and hope to see that community opinion change.

The biggest change this year should be the feeling of your specific impact inside the baseball world. MLB The Show 21 will feature people from around the industry talking about your progress, development, and achievements in different ways.

mlb the show 21 ballplayer feature

One of those narrative features will be a video podcast that follows your Ballplayer from the time he’s drafted up through his MLB career. The podcast will have multiple guests from around the industry on to talk about the steps your player is taking in making his name known. The examples provided included Sean Casey and Cliff Floyd of MLB Network, but the mode will have tons of unannounced cameos from different folks inside the industry discussing your play. There are 180 unique, dynamic episodes that could air during your career based on the decisions you make and your performance as a professional athlete. Once you’re on the precipice of debuting at the MLB level, Robert Flores will begin hosting more of these podcast episodes, and you’ll find yourself being talked about by several MLB Network icons along the way.

It should be noted, the video podcast will only be available on next-generation consoles, though current-generation consoles will still get the audio version of the feature.

The entire thing brings back memories of the weekly radio show from Madden NFL Football games of yesteryears. That feature was absolutely beloved by franchise mode players in Madden, so we’ll have to wait and see whether this will have similar popularity in Road to the Show.

Two-Way Player Path (If You Want It)

MLB The Show 21 will also be introducing two-way players, and Road to the Show will be a focal point for that feature. Upon playing a few games in the field and pitching a game or two, the manager is going to come to you and ask your thoughts on becoming a two-way player. It’s not a requirement, just an opportunity for your player to stretch his wings.

The new two-way feature will allow your Ballplayer to pitch games, and then on his off days, play in the field or DH. The nice piece of this feature is you can control the balance. If you want to play in the outfield every night and only pitch here and there, that’s your call. If you want to pitch once every five days and just play the field every now and then, that’s an option too. You’re not required to play every game as a two-way player.

Ballplayer Can Bounce Between Modes

Finally, as teased, the most fundamental, universal change coming to MLB The Show 21 is the ability to use your Ballplayer in several modes and earn XP for your player along the way.

mlb the show 21 road to the show program

This year, “loadouts” will be brand new to your Ballplayer. This will allow you to customize how your player is equipped for whatever game mode or situation he’s going into. Do you want your Ballplayer to be a defensive whiz for what you’re stepping into? Have at it. Do you want your Ballplayer to be power-stacked for a Diamond Dynasty affair? Saddle up.

It sounds like the loadout system will replace the individual bronze, silver, gold, and diamond iterations of your create-a-player in Diamond Dynasty. Instead, you’ll now just choose a loadout prior to each game that fits that position your Ballplayer will be playing in that game. You can save and rotate between these loadout archetypes, so the goal is no longer to just get a 99 overall in every stat, rather it’s unlock new archetypes and the elements within those programs.

There will be several ways to progress your Ballplayer in MLB The Show 21. Two of those will be Moments and Programs. These are two ways your Ballplayer will unlock perks and archetype packs that help you in building your optimal preferred loadout. Those programs can be completed inside Road to the Show or Diamond Dynasty, so there’s a lot of different ways to groom your Ballplayer into the very specific build you envision.

Ballplayer is very much being characterized as step one in a much bigger ecosystem that San Diego Studio will be rolling out for the feature as the years go by. You can’t help but see the path in front of them. It shouldn’t be long before Ballplayer echoes some of the similar features found in The Neighborhood and MyPlayer in NBA 2K.

Kirby Puckett Is In MLB The Show 21

kirby puckett mlb the show 21

Finally, this week’s feature premiere showcased a brand new legend reveal, and it’s none other than Minnesota Twins folk hero Kirby Puckett. Puckett was absolutely beloved by baseball fans nationwide during his 12-year career with the Twins. A 10-time All-Star, Puckett owns a career .318 average with 207 homers. Puckett was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2001. Puckett’s Signature Series card could have among the best contact grades in the entire game, though he probably won’t drop many jaws with his power or speed traits.

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  1. Looks like they recorded live video clips for the RTTS narratives, in the form of a video podcast in the minors and MLB Network (with Robert Flores) once you hit MLB. Interesting.
    180 episodes overall, and you won't see them all in one career.
    itsmb8
    I just want a player career mode, man. All this extra perk stuff is doing too much.

    What a concept.. buying a baseball game to play baseball... they need to realize that this is not 2k. Not everyone playing this game is a teenager. Money reigns supreme i guess
    jrnlgrn
    Can someone summarize the load-out feature. When they were talking about it, they mentioned DD to many times and I started zoning out.

    Basically your player can have load-outs of perks and equipment.
    I would say that the most obvious use would be for a two way player. You would have a loadout full of equipment and perks to boost your pitching on days you are scheduled to pitch and then a separate batting/fielding loadout for those games you are not pitching. Having them as loadouts means you don't have to manually change each piece of equipment every time you go from position player to pitcher.
    As far as all of the new features for "Ballplayer", they sound interesting in theory but I need to know how it actually works in practice.
    itsmb8
    I just want a player career mode, man. All this extra perk stuff is doing too much.

    So just...don’t use the loadouts?
    Then it’s RTTS, based on your performance, with the video podcast scenes to talk about how you’re doing.
    soamazen23
    What a concept.. buying a baseball game to play baseball... they need to realize that this is not 2k. Not everyone playing this game is a teenager. Money reigns supreme i guess
    The perk stuff has nothing to do with spending money....soooooooo yeah.
    Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
    itsmb8
    I just want a player career mode, man. All this extra perk stuff is doing too much.

    I kinda want to see a mode similar to Create a Legend from NBA 2k12-2k13 where you could play out the rest of a current NBA players career including guys on the bench. I'd like to see MLB The Show do that and take control of a current MLB player and call it Road to the Hall mode.
    They said you can play like you always have. The loadouts and perks are just a streamlined way for them to make the game seem like a FPS. I wouldn't worry too much. And you don't *have to* use your player in DD, you just have the option now.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    soamazen23
    What a concept.. buying a baseball game to play baseball... they need to realize that this is not 2k. Not everyone playing this game is a teenager. Money reigns supreme i guess

    To reiterate what other have said, they did say in the video you can play like your normally do. The DD integration doesn't affect your RTTS player. Just brings their appearance and loadouts to DD. And the extra stuff like perks and stuff? Not required. There for those of us who care. Not forced upon those who don't. What a concept.
    SmashMan
    So just...don’t use the loadouts?
    Then it’s RTTS, based on your performance, with the video podcast scenes to talk about how you’re doing.

    It sounds like you need to use loadouts. They said on the stream you can level all your stats to 50 through training/playing and then use loadouts to get them higher.
    That podcast stuff with the live video is very cool. I too was reminded of the old Madden radio shows and this is a neat evolution of that. Can't wait to see what famous players cameo in that one
    milkmanbonzai
    That podcast stuff with the live video is very cool. I too was reminded of the old Madden radio shows and this is a neat evolution of that. Can't wait to see what famous players cameo in that one

    yeah and inside the show
    The problem with these types of things is they get very old quick just like commentary there really is no way to dynamically keep things like that interesting unless they added patches to it weekly , I would prefer the newspaper headlines back we once had.
    ninertravel
    yeah and inside the show
    The problem with these types of things is they get very old quick just like commentary there really is no way to dynamically keep things like that interesting unless they added patches to it weekly , I would prefer the newspaper headlines back we once had.

    Inside the show was a bust from the beginning. I LOVED the idea of it. But I had to turn it off. So much repeating. Tony Bruno in Madden 05 had more diversity in the show.
    180 episodes of a podcast format sounds like a lot. I'm pretty intrigued. Also, Robert Flores is a true die hard fan of the game. I'm sure he had no problem devoting some extra time to avoid the typical stale videos after a couple seasons.
    ninertravel
    yeah and inside the show
    The problem with these types of things is they get very old quick just like commentary there really is no way to dynamically keep things like that interesting unless they added patches to it weekly , I would prefer the newspaper headlines back we once had.

    Newspaper headlines is not good enough on its own. They're a nice dressing but there's not enough meat.
    soamazen23
    What a concept.. buying a baseball game to play baseball... they need to realize that this is not 2k. Not everyone playing this game is a teenager. Money reigns supreme i guess
    Typical OS overreaction here with an uninformed opinion and spreading misinformation.
    Next time watch the stream before commenting.
    Also, I'm nearly 40 and I play 2k. So not everyone who plays 2k is a teenager.
    Royals Baseball: Catch the Thrill!
    Playboy™
    Still seeing those robotic looking pitching motions in the game, this was the number one thing I wanted to see change in MLB The Show 21.

    Still can't understand why, as we enter a new generation of consoles, this still hasn't been addressed. A real blemish here. Refer to that "other game" out of the far east if you want to see realistic pitching motion.
    Since in the stream they mentioned you start at AA level I'm guessing that means there won't be expanded rosters or at least not a playable A ball. Would be nice to really have to work your way up. I know a majority would rather be in the league almost immediately but it would be nice to really grind your way to the top or be a AAAA type that goes back and forth. A journeyman career would be at least another 45 podcast episodes.
    Tendonitis
    It sounds like you need to use loadouts. They said on the stream you can level all your stats to 50 through training/playing and then use loadouts to get them higher.

    I heard that too, which is actually very disturbing because that means you have to use equipment, and preferably diamond equipment to make your player have good ratings. Of course the best diamond gear is expensive so it looks like they are trying to monetize RTTS.
    They also showed a reward track that showed both Perk Packs and Equipment packs as rewards. Are these on the store? Can they be purchased with stubs? I hope not, but if they are then RTTS has definitely been monetized beyond the point that I am comfortable with.
    Pretty surprised after all their social justice stuff they (rightly) push throughout the year, they go and add Kirby Puckett to the game. In the future can we instead stick to adding legends who aren't all time human garbage? Cheers
    Honestly I'm not a fan of this podcast. It reminds me of the video shoutouts in EA UFCs Career mode. This really adds nothing interesting to the mode imo and will be something that players will skip through or get bored of quickly.
    Instead of using real footage they should have mocapped them and made these scenes in game imo. But COVID would have made that difficult.
    ninertravel
    yeah and inside the show
    The problem with these types of things is they get very old quick just like commentary there really is no way to dynamically keep things like that interesting unless they added patches to it weekly , I would prefer the newspaper headlines back we once had.

    Commentary, should not be as repetitive because SSD in next gen systems. There are no seek times or loading in gigs of info into memory for any given situation. Depended upon if they designed the game around the PS5 and XBX SX
    I really hope this doesn’t mean RTTS will require an always online component.
    I’m glad for you all that like DD and other monetized online modes across sports games, but I have zero interest and I’m tired of seeing them bleed over into all modes.
    I just don’t want it to end up like FotF in Madden. What was a fun single player offline mode is now online required. And I can’t even use my last name because the EA servers find it “offensive” even though it’s not and there have been real players with it before.
    Impetuous65
    Commentary, should not be as repetitive because SSD in next gen systems. There are no seek times or loading in gigs of info into memory for any given situation. Depended upon if they designed the game around the PS5 and XBX SX

    Commentary will ALWAYS be repetitive in sports games, there are only so many ways you can describe certain instances and factor that in with the amount these games get played you're just never not going to hear the same lines repeated
    Sent from my moto g(8) plus using Operation Sports mobile app
    It's not all bad news, I actually do like what they are doing for two way RTTS players in MLBTS 21. I have been using a SP and 2B two way RTTS player for years now, except that it required two different RTTS save files (actually four since I always keep back ups to prevent accidentaly overwriting an existing save file with the wrong RTTS player). So being able to do two way players in the game with one RTTS player is a nice change. But that is where my admiration for the MLBTS 21 game ends.
    We now know why Y2Y saves were eliminated for our RTTS players (still no explanation why it was removed for franchise gamers) since SDS decided to throw the entire RTTS mode revamped only three short years ago into the trash bin in favor of this completely new way to play the mode. Sure at least for MLBTS 21 SDS won't be forcing us to use RTTS players in DD, but now that the entire RTTS experience with all their side missions that you must complete if you want your player to progress is closely coupled with how you play DD. If they thought I would embraced trashing all my existing RTTS players to embrace the new DD way of playing RTTS, they were sorely mistaken. For the first time it nine years of buying this game every year on launch day, I will be saving my money and will continue to play MLBTS 20 for at least one more year.
    I happen to think this new Video Pod Cast feature (audio for PS4/XBOX One) is a head turner feature.
    180 different dynamic possibilities? That is quite robust. I would be excited to play several RTTS builds to experience all of it.
    I am really really hoping and praying they have implemented this type of in-season presentation for franchise mode.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    Doesn't appear they upgraded the create-a-player face choices/models. I hope we aren't stuck with some of the horrible dated looking faces of the fake managers and coach choices. Will be an eye sore looking at the rest of the great PS5 graphics and faces.
    KnightTemplar
    Doesn't appear they upgraded the create-a-player face choices/models. I hope we aren't stuck with some of the horrible dated looking faces of the fake managers and coach choices. Will be an eye sore looking at the rest of the great PS5 graphics and faces.

    Ugh, some of the coaches look the worst.
    Legitimately they have many 20 year old baby face coaches.
    eric7064
    Ugh, some of the coaches look the worst.
    Legitimately they have many 20 year old baby face coaches.

    They should just allow us to edit coaches. No idea why they don't.
    Armor and Sword
    I happen to think this new Video Pod Cast feature (audio for PS4/XBOX One) is a head turner feature.
    180 different dynamic possibilities? That is quite robust. I would be excited to play several RTTS builds to experience all of it.
    I am really really hoping and praying they have implemented this type of in-season presentation for franchise mode.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports

    I really hope so too. I would think (or hope) that they wouldn't do all those podcasts for just one mode. That would be a huge upgrade in franchise if they put that in there. Next week will tell all!
    bryanm1982
    I really hope so too. I would think (or hope) that they wouldn't do all those podcasts for just one mode. That would be a huge upgrade in franchise if they put that in there. Next week will tell all!

    I watched the video stream this morning and it sounds like these podcasts are recorded to specifically discuss your RTTS ballplayer and his journey through the minors.
    They may have a different podcast type thing laid out for franchise but it won't be the same ones as the ballplayer if they do.
    This is my guess.
    We will find out more next week.
    As a side note, I would love to see some new storyline engine like this in franchise. Inside the show gets monotonous and I turn it off these days.
    Funkycorm
    I watched the video stream this morning and it sounds like these podcasts are recorded to specifically discuss your RTTS ballplayer and his journey through the minors.
    They may have a different podcast type thing laid out for franchise but it won't be the same ones as the ballplayer if they do.
    This is my guess.
    We will find out more next week.
    As a side note, I would love to see some new storyline engine like this in franchise. Inside the show gets monotonous and I turn it off these days.

    Yeah I would love to have at least half of the podcast type in franchise. I realize it be different storylines. But at least a podcast on updates around the league. Be great if there was like for trade deadline, playoff push, and playoffs.
    I know this particular podcaster is exclusive to RTTS but considering they are implementing an algorithm for the 180 videos, I'd like to think they would implement something like that in franchise as well. Imagine getting some podcasts in franchise about big trades, injuries, free agency, etc that also don't repeat. Considering they also added Robert Flores to the mix and have MLB Network, it would be really awesome if they actually had MLB Central or something like that for the theme.
    Balldude777
    I know this particular podcaster is exclusive to RTTS but considering they are implementing an algorithm for the 180 videos, I'd like to think they would implement something like that in franchise as well. Imagine getting some podcasts in franchise about big trades, injuries, free agency, etc that also don't repeat. Considering they also added Robert Flores to the mix and have MLB Network, it would be really awesome if they actually had MLB Central or something like that for the theme.

    Yea idk what to think yet... They added the trade hub thing only to MTO and not Franchise, guess we'll see Thursday.
    There's still gotta be a good reason why they scrapped the Y2Y saves, I dont buy the Xbox addition as the reason.
    The Kid 24
    Yea idk what to think yet... They added the trade hub thing only to MTO and not Franchise, guess we'll see Thursday.
    There's still gotta be a good reason why they scrapped the Y2Y saves, I dont buy the Xbox addition as the reason.

    Remember RTTS had Y2Y saves too, and last year's save DEFINITELY wasn't gonna mesh with the changes they made to it this year. The whole progression system's different.
    Is that a reason to axe it from everything? No, but it's the first valid reason I've seen that things are different enough that progress couldn't be carried over. We'll see if it's the same for MTO and Franchise.
    Though I'm concerned whether the changes will go in a direction that I actually want...I'm kinda lukewarm on the new RTTS progression, and I feel like I need to play it for myself to really make a call one way or another.
    Unfortunately I can totally see the podcast getting stale after a few months of play and people skipping right through it. Surprisingly this year I'm not really excited for this game and it's weird because I had high hopes for the PS5. I guess my expectations were too high
    parky_17
    Commentary will ALWAYS be repetitive in sports games, there are only so many ways you can describe certain instances and factor that in with the amount these games get played you're just never not going to hear the same lines repeated
    Sent from my moto g(8) plus using Operation Sports mobile app

    I'm talking about accuracy and not so out of context, because they have to load so many scenarios into memory to cover x amount of things. With SSD's they can just grab that language in an instant.
    bcruise
    Is that a reason to axe it from everything? No, but it's the first valid reason I've seen that things are different enough that progress couldn't be carried over. We'll see if it's the same for MTO and Franchise.

    This does make me wonder as it is the first potential reason we have heard from them about dropping year to year saves.
    Don't get me wrong, I am not expecting any major updates with franchise but it makes me wonder if they scrapped y2y for RTTS and not to upset that base they scrapped it for franchise.
    Kind of a stretch on my part but I still think that going cross platform had a role in that as well.
    Funkycorm
    This does make me wonder as it is the first potential reason we have heard from them about dropping year to year saves.
    Don't get me wrong, I am not expecting any major updates with franchise but it makes me wonder if they scrapped y2y for RTTS and not to upset that base they scrapped it for franchise.
    Kind of a stretch on my part but I still think that going cross platform had a role in that as well.

    Right, I agree it was one of the reasons but I dont believe it was THE reason why.
    BigOscar
    Pretty surprised after all their social justice stuff they (rightly) push throughout the year, they go and add Kirby Puckett to the game. In the future can we instead stick to adding legends who aren't all time human garbage? Cheers

    Not sure how you could watch sports, or root for any team if you focus on sorting through the trash.
    dalger21

    Its not the podcast that caused them to not have year to year saves this year but the fact that they appear to have completely changed the player progression model.
    I still maintain that if we see the perk packs and equipment packs on the store then the reason they did it so they could better monetize the RTTS mode.
    I am very interested in the perk pack shown as a progression reward. If those are actual cards that have to be equipped then they, like equipment, would be stripped from the player every year. What is the point of a cary over save if your player is reset it mediocre ratings every year until you can buy the best equipment and perks cards again.
    Unfortunately, i doubt we get any answers before that early access weekend.
    We should be able to equip any equipment we want for our player. Not have to earn them. That's pretty unrealistic. And they shouldn't be used to boost ratings.
    So say you are a catcher, you decide whether you want to wear Nike gear or All-Star gear. A Rawlings glove or Wilson. This is how it works in real life. You test the equipment and use what you feel most comfortable with.
    Maybe they can then do something like if you play well, you get offered a contract with those equipment brands and you can earn money from them to buy upgrades for your equipment. Not like adding 3 points for fielding, but maybe something like getting new equipment from the brand which can then add a small boost to your ratings since they are new and improved equipment.
    I don't know. Just some 5am thoughts.
    I know I've seen some former players say that when you're drafted usually endorsements consist of a brand say Nike offering you a certain amount of money to spend on their products. Then when or if you become a star companies will actually pay you to use their brands.
    I think it could be cool to have your agent or a rep from a company offer you a deal to use their brand. Then as your player improves and gains notoriety you receive more and better offers.
    Sent from my SM-A205U1 using Operation Sports mobile app

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