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The 2017 Sports Game of the Year: MLB The Show 17

MLB The Show 17

The 2017 Sports Game of the Year: MLB The Show 17

There is something to be said about incremental change, excellence in consistency and never messing up the formula for players along the way.

While it is true that MLB The Show as a franchise does catch some flak at times for perhaps not innovating and instead incrementing, the results have led it to a second straight Sports Game of the Year win here on Operation Sports.

This year’s game introduced new options that allowed you to accelerate how fast your franchise could progress, which totally fits Sony’s style. If anything, how Sony has continually introduced new features but left the control to the players on whether they partake in those new ways to play has been nothing short of ingenious.

Most other sports franchises seemingly lack the courage (or ability) to introduce a major gameplay element into the mix while also saying, “And hey if you hate it, we also have the old way(s) in the game too!”

That has always been the thing that, to me at least, has always been great about The Show. You are the one with the control, and the end user is always the one in charge of their experience at the end of the day.

Another overlooked aspect of the franchise that could be leading to some continued good will is the continuation of features like year-to-year saves, which keep those Road to the Show careers or Arizona Diamondbacks’ dynasties going well into the future.

The Modes Continue To Impress

Road to the Show introduced new options to make decisions on and off the field to shape your player’s career. I personally wasn’t the biggest fan of the documentary style at the end of the day, but it still introduced a relatively unobtrusive way to introduce some life into the mode.

Retro Mode is a take it or leave it thing for me, but it was cool to have it included and play it a couple of times.

The big winner to me continues to be the Diamond Dynasty mode, which has perhaps become the best card-collecting mode in all of sports games.

From being able to play as legends (this is essential for baseball) to the refined marketplace to how Stubs are earned, it all mostly made sense and worked well. The Events were all well done and Ranked Seasons were well done as well.

And then there’s the Conquest and Battle Royale modes, which have become some players’ favorite modes in the game.

So That’s the Best of 2017

MLB The Show 17 had another fantastic year. Considering the distance from release to awards discussion, it’s amazing this game has been able to stick out in gamers’ minds long enough to win this award for a second straight season.

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  1. Couldn't agree more. However, if The Show wants to stay ahead of the curve, Franchise Mode is in need of some desperate attention. For example, Progression/regression has improved (albeit very little), but is still illogical, inexplicable, and downright archaic compared to systems in games like NHL. It is very unlikely that Mike Trout will suffer massive regression in his late 20s, but the Show still seems determined to say that it's the truth.
    It's far from the only thing that has stagnated in Franchise. I don't mind minor, iterative improvements, and they have happened (for example, budgets lost their rigidity this year, but also became more ethereal and confusing as a result), but at this pace, The Show's Franchise mode is going to be outshined significantly by other games.
    I'm not mentioning these things to complain, I'm just talking about them as a discussion about what the Show needs to do to stay ahead of the competition and earn a win in 2018.
    As a gamer in my 40’s, there is something to be said about maximizing my time actually enjoying a sports game vs fiddling with sliders, ratings, and rain dances to get realistic gameplay.
    The show is great with minimal adjustment. Which allows me to simply play and enjoy. Perfect? No. I would second the need for franchise love specifically progression/regression. But I love this game. Good article.
    Sent from my iPhone using Operation Sports
    As someone who doesn't play other sports games all that much, it's a great feeling to know the one I do play is the best of the bunch, and rightfully so since Baseball is the best sport known to man.
    Can't wait to see what 18 has in store for us.
    A well deserved win. The gameplay was the best yet in the series and the game made a gorgeous transition to 4K this year.
    Ball spins, ball physics, humanity AI all made this game take a big leap in realism for me and my play style.
    Well done SDS and let’s make it a three peat with 18!!!
    Not even a baseball fan and this is my favorite series.  One of the biggest things for me is the year to year saves.  My franchise/dynasty never has to end and with a limited amount of time to get on and play, it's a big sell for me.  
    Retropyro
    Not even a baseball fan and this is my favorite series.

    I'm glad to see posts like these. The Show is my favorite game every year but major league baseball is also my favorite sport, so sometimes I feel like my bias could possibly cloud my judgement to the point I probably would have even chosen MLB2K over games like Madden, NBA2K and NCAA Football. In my mind, posts like these help validate my bias.
    As a player approaching 50, I can appreciate how far the quality of games have come.  The Show 17 provided a warming, delightful experience each time I played, with little to no frustration (other that the desire to have more analytics in franchise mode).  A well deserved recognition.
    Very well deserved in my opinion. I've loved the game right from the get go and have played it daily pretty much all year and still and will right up until the next release.
    Sent from my SM-G935W8 using Tapatalk
    Caulfield
    I'm glad to see posts like these. The Show is my favorite game every year but major league baseball is also my favorite sport, so sometimes I feel like my bias could possibly cloud my judgement to the point I probably would have even chosen MLB2K over games like Madden, NBA2K and NCAA Football. In my mind, posts like these help validate my bias.

    The Show is so good it brought me back to being a fan of baseball. It used to be just hockey for me. Nowadays, I am barely aware of what is happening in the hockey world, but I'm still following the Baseball off-season closely.
    I can't deny it, it's all the Show's fault.
    TheWarmWind
    The Show is so good it brought me back to being a fan of baseball. It used to be just hockey for me. Nowadays, I am barely aware of what is happening in the hockey world, but I'm still following the Baseball off-season closely.
    I can't deny it, it's all the Show's fault.

    Same here. The Show 06 on PSP brought me back to the love of the game after not watching any baseball since the strike of '94 as a little leaguer! Now I'm a baseball addict again. Can't say the same about any other sport.
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