Major League Baseball 2k11

5.0 Overall Score

Written by on May 23, 2011 in

Baseball is back!

2kSports and Visual Concepts brings America’s Pastime back to the Xbox 360 once again. As the only licensed baseball game available on the Xbox 360 there is a clear indication that the lack of competition is slowly degrading this once solid franchise.

Now, there is still a lot to like in 2k11, such as the My Player mode, the stadiums, improved player likeness (usually), and the overall presentation of a game. But there is some pieces that pull it down from being the great game that it’s aspiring to be. Bad and super repetitive commentary, some sound issues and bland player likenesses for some superstar players (Alex Rodriguez comes to mind).

Overall, the gameplay is still very solid. The pitching function with the right stick remains the best pitching mechanic made for video games. Instead of a power/effectiveness meter that you simply hold a button for and time your release, you have to manipulate the right stick in a variety of ways depending on the pitch you choose to throw. Pull down and push back up for a fastball, pull down and to the left/right (depending on which hand your pitcher is throwing with) and rotate the stick three-quarters around to throw a knuckle curve, etc. Getting a pitch just right is exceptionally satisfying, and you can feel the horror of a bad pitch that just hangs in the batter’s wheelhouse right before he blasts it into the third deck in right field at Yankee Stadium.

Basically, there are four main types of game play: MLB Today, Franchise, My Player, and Online.

MLB Today is simply where you choose a game to play from today’s actual MLB schedule, you can play against the computer, or invite a friend in to play against you. You also have the option to jump online from here and play any match up you want.

Franchise mode is, of course, the meat and potatoes of the game where you choose the team you want to guide through season after season in your quest to win championships.

My Player mode is probably the most fun where you create a player, a prospect “drafted” by the team of your choice. You start off as an AA level player and work your way up to the majors. Once you’ve ascended to the top level, you begin your quest to the Hall of Fame. Meeting goals placed throughout the game, you earn points that you can exchange for skill points to make your player the best in the league.

Goals include objectives to accomplish per game (at bats, fielding, pitching, and baserunning), in season, and career. Ultimately you work your player to becoming a star and hitting milestones will help you to get to the Hall of Fame. Milestones are things like getting into the All-Star game, breaking season and career records, and going deep into the playoffs as well as winning it all.

Online play is not one of the game’s biggest strengths. Choppy frame rates, awkward player movements chasing down ground balls and fly outs, and bizarre “management” by your opponent (to exploit the way baseball is played) all drag down the experience of online play. The delay is noticeable and is not good for a game that is based on timing for swinging a bat at a fastball zipping in toward your living room.

Overall, the MLB 2k series seems to be dragging along and not making a lot of improvements to justify the cost every year, only the vs. cpu or local seems to stay consistently solid, but there’s almost nothing new brought to the table. This applies to many sports games, but 2k sports has received numerous accolades for their NBA games, and there shouldn’t be any reason why their baseball series can’t keep up.

 

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Author: Erik Johnsen View all posts by
A married gamer that spends time editing many of the articles you read right here at The Married Gamers. Erik sometimes reviews Xbox One games and writes articles, but spends his available free time from work or hanging out with his family hunting achievements for a higher gamerscore.

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