MLB The Show 21 is a No Doubt Home Run


published by fair use

Fernando Tatis Jr. of the San Diego Padres is on the cover of MLB The Show 21.

Nick Holt, Editor-in-Chief

Released on April 20, MLB The Show 21 hit the market for both Playstation and Xbox users for the first time in game history.  Formally, the Major League Baseball game was solely a Playstation exclusive, but now they have broadened their audience and it seems to have worked in their favor.

The game couldn’t have come at a better time for sports video game fans, with NBA2K once again disappointing its fans, and Madden having countless unrealistic, head scratching encounters, MLB The Show is a nice new refresher for gamers.

Containing its usual main modes of Diamond Dynasty, Road to the Show, and Franchise, The Show prides itself in making their most popular modes perfect.

Starting with Diamond Dynasty, the fan favorite truly is a game changer.  DD is a team building, card collecting mode, similar to those of Ultimate Team and MyTeam for fans of Madden, FIFA, and 2K, but in my opinion, a much better version.  While those gaming franchises encourage pay-to-win, in MLB The Show’s Diamond Dynasty it’s very easy to get some good players on your roster pretty quickly.  Like every game, there is an option to buy “stubs,” the currency used in DD, but it certainly is less common than other games that you will see God squads of elite players.  DD has various different challenges and online games to play, so getting bored or tired of the same thing over and over again, really isn’t an issue.

For Road to the Show, a new story line follows, giving players the option to create a Shohei Ohtani type of player, one who both can play the field, bat, and pitch.  A new addition to the game, that gives players a new angle to work their way up to the Major League.  Though, I was a bit disappointed with the fact that there was no “showcase,” that the game had in previous years.  In prior games, you were given the opportunity to play a few games, and if you did well, it would determine where you were drafted.  This year, the game doesn’t have that, you are seemingly just automatically selected in the 3rd round and your career starts in the minors.

Lastly, Franchise had some major changes that enhanced the solo player’s experience.  The setup and progression of the game is a lot better than it was in past years, but overall I was upset that there once again was no option for an online franchise that you can play with your friends.  It’s one thing that Madden does better than every other sports game, the online franchise with the finding of young players that you can develop and build your team, MLB The Show doesn’t offer that.  It’s an extremely doable task for San Diego Studios to complete, and it’s disappointing that it’s not included.  The closest you can get to it is “Custom Leagues,” which is more an exhibition tournament.

Overall, I think MLB The Show 21 is a really good game, they aced Diamond Dynasty, which is what most all of their audience plays the most, though a few missing game modes and additions hold it back from truly being perfect.