The St. Louis Cardinals, as well as the other MLB teams, are currently in spring training. A former divisional opponent, the Houston Astros, have now moved from the NL Central to the AL West (Cockcroft). Now that the Cardinals lost the Astros from their division, they only have four divisional opponents this upcoming season, one of them being the Pittsburgh Pirates. Speaking of the Pirates, arguably their best player is featured on the cover of the sequel to the most popular baseball video game.
“MLB 13: The Show” was released on March 5, 2013 in the U.S. for the PS3 and Vita. “MLB 13” was developed by SCE San Diego Studio and published by Sony Computer Entertainment, and it is rated E (Everyone). The genres of “MLB 13” are professional baseball and sports. Single-player and multiplayer (online or two-player) are the major game modes. The US version cover pro is CF Andrew McCutchen from the Pirates. The Canada version is RF Jose Bautista from the Toronto Blue Jays.
“MLB 13” is the eighth installment in “The Show” series with “MLB 06: The Show” (PS2/2006) as the first installment and “MLB 12: The Show” (PS3/2012) as the prequel to “MLB 13”. There will be another “The Show” game in the future, probably called “MLB 14: The Show” and available on the PS4, due to poor competition from the "MLB 2K" series.
“MLB 13” continues last edition’s full compatibility with the PlayStation Move. Also returning are the commentators: Matt Vasgersian and Eric Karros. However, a new commentator will join the duo: Steve Lyons. The player can also pitch from the catcher’s point-of-view. In addition, Pulse Pitching returns for its second season, which deals with the pitcher’s real-life throwing abilities and fatigue. “Road to the Show” mode also returns, which allows the player to create their own player so he can start out in the minor leagues and work his way up to the majors.
New features include picking up your third base coach with L1 on home runs, tracking the ball with R1 and a throwing meter for fielders. The latter has been done before in other franchise baseball games with the fielder throwing the ball to another fielder at a speed dependent on how long the player holds down the throwing button.
“Beginner” mode is new for the franchise; when the player is up to bat, the player only has to try and swing at fastballs. Another new mode is called “The Show Live.” This mode is similar to 2K’s “MLB Today” feature because real-life transactions, injuries, results, etc. show on the screen, making this mode worthy of playing during the MLB season. Many customization options are also available.
Positives for “MLB 13” include amazing presentation, player face graphics, intricate stadiums, throwing meter, great animations, TV-looking interfaces, player intricacies when batting/pitching, “Broadcast” camera mode, great gameplay, solid pitching/hitting, fun fielding, improvements to “Road to the Show” and “The Show Live” mode. The lasting appeal is great with “The Show Live” always being a fun mode during the season and the long “Road to the Show” mode, as well as the pick-up online play anytime.
One negative for “MLB 13” includes the fact that baserunners don’t automatically run when the pitcher is pitching the ball on a 3-2 count with two outs. Other negatives include some poor graphics regarding stadium crowds, commentators don’t always seem to say what is actually happening on the field, baserunners clip into fielders, outfielders sometimes run through the outfield wall, even though the ball will manage to bounce off of the wall, and similar to last year’s game. Metacritic gave it a Metascore of 87 out of 100 for the PS3 and 77 for the Vita.
Even though “MLB 13” has some downsides, it is still worth buying, unless you are not a fan of professional baseball games and/or already own “MLB 12”. For those who don’t fit those qualifications, this game is perfect for you and can be purchased here in St. Louis.
“MLB 13” is about $60 for the PS3 and $40 for the Vita at Target, Walmart, Kmart, Best Buy, Toys “R” Us, Hastings and GameStop. A pre-owned game at GameStop only costs $55 for the PS3 ($35 for the Vita) and great used deals can also be found at Amazon.com. Downloadable content is available for purchase from the PlayStation Store and GameStop.
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Official website: https://www.theshownation.com/
Wiki website: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MLB_13:_The_Show
IMDb website: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2728666/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1
Facebook website: https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/MLB-13The-Show/254621254638381?fref=ts
More articles by Trevor Roe: http://www.examiner.com/video-games-in-st-louis/trevor-roe
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