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Road to the Show Is My Favorite Mode in MLB The Show 17

MLB The Show 17

Road to the Show Is My Favorite Mode in MLB The Show 17

After a few months of playing MLB 17: The Show, I am surprised to report I have spent most of my time in Road to the Show, MLB 17’s career mode. In the past, I’ve enjoyed building a character and watching him progress, but RttS never quite captured my attention as much as franchise mode or, more recently, Diamond Dynasty.

However, this year the mode is on another level and could possibly represent the best individual-focused content in all of sports gaming. Here are a few of my thoughts regarding my experience in Road to the Show this season.

Documentary Syle Is A Cosmetic But Interesting Idea

The addition of a documentary-like framework for the series is unique, but ultimately feels a little cosmetic. That said, when one of these narrated scenes trigger, I know that something important is usually about to happen. It’s a nice change of pace for the traditionally text-heavy mode.

Included in these scenes are some “choose your own adventure” style dialogue options. Having stuck with my single created player, I’ve tried to give him a consistent voice when it comes to answering the questions posed. This gives my character a personality, at least in my head, that extends beyond stats and ratings. However, I’m not quite sure my choices are having a significant impact on the game. I’ve also had my manager address me about the same issue twice, with the exact same choices and responses. Regardless of impact, these dialogue options are an upgrade over past interactions.

My player, a speedy contact-hitting second baseman, was asked to move to third base by the White Sox, the team that drafted him. When I looked at the organizational depth chart, this made sense for both the team and my player. The franchise was lacking a really talented third baseman, which would give me more opportunity to move up the ranks. It was a nice bit of realism that otherwise could have felt like a gimmicky way to make the mode dynamic.

RPG Like Character Building Choices

Also realistic was the issue that I hadn’t spent many points on arm strength, which would now be a problem while my player manned the hot corner. This presented a nice strategic choice for me: continue increasing speed (the strength of his game) or fixing a weakness. These RPG-like choices are what make this mode so interesting for me.

After carrying a .350-plus batting average into the middle of the Double-A season, my player was called up to Triple-A, where he struggled a bit. It was apparent that catchers’ arms had caught up with his speed, so that part of his game was neutralized a bit. He could still hit, but at a much lower clip. After half a season at Triple-A, my player limped to a mediocre .260 average, though his slugging was still high thanks to an ability to leg out doubles and triples.

Being Moved Around Creates an Interesting Dynamic

I was surprised he was  traded in the offseason, though it became another interesting twist in my player’s story. However, as a third baseman in the Rockies organization, he wouldn’t be challenging Arenado anytime soon. I was also surprised that he was again starting in AA; apparently the Rockies weren’t as convinced in his ability as the White Sox had been.

In another twist that made contextual sense, the Rockies tried him at a a variety of positions: the natural spot at second base, his secondary position in center field, and at third. Occasionally, he DH’ed as well. All of this variety makes for a fun career as my player bounces between positions, even if I’d prefer he eventually land somewhere so I could maximize my ratings for a single position.

It’s cool to see your player develop the Quirks that are new across all of MLB 17: The Show. Along with customized equipment and ratings categories, these elements really begin to flesh out a player. Despite the lack of a preset story or cutscenes, like NBA 2K’s career modes and the upcoming Madden Longshot, I think Road to the Show does a great job of presenting a story. The mode doesn’t force anything and it’s easy to craft a vision of your player’s personality, even if just inside your own imagination.

Road to The Show is My Favorite Mode

For all of these compelling stories and reasons, I feel Road to the Show is a valuable piece in the MLB 17’s arsenal of modes. I’ve overlooked it in the past, but this may be the best version yet. I’m thankful that what story does exist is not “on rails” and allows me to craft a character I want to play. Changing situations and contextual realism also make the mode more dynamic and, ultimately, more enjoyable.


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  1. I really dig this year's "Hard Knocks" style presentation; it's not overly intrusive like other career modes' cutscenes yet provides just enough of a framework to feel like you're crafting a narrative and not just playing a string of games. And to be honest, the story-based career modes in other games, namely NBA 2K, have fallen flat with poor storytelling that doesn't get with the foundation of a video game (although The Journey shows a lot of promise). 
    For the first time, I'm actually addicted to Diamond Dynasty. Normally, I'm usually waist-deep in Franchise, but starting off with a ton of good cards out of the gate thanks to the MVP version I bought at launch, I was able to start off with a good team and also came to the realization that most of the players I've come across have no semblance of plate discipline. It's pretty satisfying when a low Bronze player rolls out a team of all Golds and they're easily trounced and getting me one step closer to a better Gold card and pack at the end of a Season. It's now in that "it's midnight, but I want one more game" territory, especially now that I haven't run into any server issues since the first big patch.
    I swear I will get around to RTTS at some point before October. But for now I'm too engrossed in team play to take a break. Maybe at some point in the future there will be a Franchise/RTTS hybrid. If thats even possible.
    Franchise or Death!
    I may be a little biased.
    Honestly though, I never understood the appeal of RttS, especially over Franchise. Why play a single position when I can play all of them? Why leave the fate of where my player ends up to RNG when I can be the one in control?
    I guess there is some appeal over a shorter timespan for more rapid progression of your "story", but if you're in it for the long haul like me (play the Show year round, carry over save from 14) nothing beats Franchise.
    In my opinion.
    Which is not humble.
    Cause I am awesome.
    Peace out!
    The mode doesn't force anything and it's easy to craft a vision of your player's personality, even if just inside your own imagination.

    And THIS is why it works.
    It is literally impossible to create a forced narrative that will appeal to everyone. Using crafted stories is a quick way to turn-off a percentage of players; just as not everyone loves comedy movies, not everyone loves SciFi TV shows, etc.
    While I couldn't get into RTTS because I quickly realized my love of the MLBTS comes from being a part of the entire game; the simplicity of the interactions and how I could allow my imagination to run wild with the narrative was quite appealing.
    Can you still make your player faster and throw harder as he gets older? If so, I'll continie to pass.
    Sent from my SM-G928V using Operation Sports mobile app

    Thats one of the beautiful things about the Road Show; you dont HAVE to increase either of those attributes. You can stymie any of them you want. Though I could see where a 24 year old Billy Hamilton could outrun the 18 year old version as well as the 36 year old version of himself.
    I have a 1987 RTTS going and I am on my dream team with the NY Yankees. Taken in round 1.
    Drafted as a 3B and moved to RF. I am a front runner for the triple crown in my first year of AA ball.
    I am almost done with year one.....and this is the first time I have really dug into the mode.
    It is a lot of fun for sure.
    LOL played CF - rays drafted me and wanted me to move to right, i said no and caused a big fuss got labeled as a bad teammate lol - it was cool but also got put on the bench....requested a trade they wouldn't and couldn't trade me so eventually i started in CF but man what a rocky start to a career it was fun though - i wanted to say no on purpose to see what they would say and do.
    What difficulty do you play RTTS on? I posted this in another thread but can’t post my own threads yet as I am new here, new to The Show really.
    I started RTTS RF on veteran and hit .350 in AA. I was called up to the White Sox at the AA all star break. They had no RF and my ratings were higher.
    I go to the show and am now hitting .200. I read that the way it works is when you choose veteran it plays more like rookie in AA, veteran on AAA and then all star in MLB. If that’s true then if I leave it at veteran eventually I can get to .300 level by getting better, training my guy, etc. That seems like the way it should work. Get better by training your attributes up and practice.
    Now, I see a lot of people talk good about Dynamic Difficulty but I don’t see how that can be good for RTTS. As I improve my guy via attribute training and hit better won’t the game just knock it down by increasing the difficulty? Or if I struggle because I need practice and need to increase attributes past 50 or 60 it will lower the difficulty and make it easier.
    What do most people do for RTTS? I see that the default when you load the game is dynamic also.
    Any input is appreciated.
    I love RTTS too, and I'll tell you why.
    At the beginning of the year (MLB the Show year) I created a power-hitting left fielder with mad speed, Benjamin Franklin Rodriguez. Better known as Benny "the Jet" Rodriguez, he was drafted by the D-backs in the third round. After playing an entire season in AA ball, he was called up, and played for the D-backs for two seasons, winning the world series once in a close, 4-3 game seven against the Red Sox. That off season, sick of Arizona, I got my chance to have him traded. Traded to the Blue Jays. DANGIT, Still furious, I scanned the roster over, and lo and behold what did I see? The most deadly hitting lineup in history. Josh Donaldson, who really hadn't been hit by regression. Manny Machado. And Bryce Harper. HOLY CRAP. The big four, as they became known, Won three straight world series rings, and then Donaldson retired. Benny got injured for half a season in the All star game. Bryce left that offseason. Manny left too. The Blue Jays were the basement once more. After hitting 568 homers in six MLB seasons with an average of .465. Benny retired. Say goodbye to the Jays.
    MEH, this mode needs alot of work "off the field" Same cutscenes over and over and no new content that was promised to be patched in.
    This is apparently year one of a 3 year development remake of the mode so I get it but its lackluster to veterans of this game.
    Had I never played MLB The Show or RTTS this would be terrific.
    Its good, just feels stale
    I love RTTS too, and I'll tell you why.
    At the beginning of the year (MLB the Show year) I created a power-hitting left fielder with mad speed, Benjamin Franklin Rodriguez. Better known as Benny "the Jet" Rodriguez ...After hitting 568 homers in six MLB seasons with an average of .465. Benny retired. Say goodbye to the Jays.
    Typo, 16 seasons? and .465! gracious.
    Where is the request a trade in MLB The Show 17 cause my player was put on the 6p day DL and when he was almost healed I was traded from the Tigers to  the Ray's I don't want to play for Tampa Bay  I want to be traded to somewhere else I really could use some help 
    Where is the request a trade in MLB The Show 17 cause my player was put on the 6p day DL and when he was almost healed I was traded from the Tigers to* the Ray's I don't want to play for Tampa Bay* I want to be traded to somewhere else I really could use some help*

    In midseason (around end of May - early June) and in the off-season your agent calls you, tell them you are unhappy, then demand a trade.

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