Review by dizzyjay2

"Too Many Busts + No Consistency= Poor Game"

Fans of the mogul series would love any game they put out. They are fun, in dept and does a nice job representing baseball. This new installment, however, is a serious step back from the 2007 version.

For those who are not familiar with these game, its fairly simple. You can start with any team, any time from 1901 on. As you play through time, real players come in as they did in real life, and you are the all-controlling GM. You can set lineups, make trades, build stadiums, set ticket prices and draft. Its mostly simulation, and you can play but its awful (I'll get to it later.) The game is not much more complicated, and therefore has almost no learning curve and it equally as fun for new and old players alike.

As someone who treasures the great history of baseball, I like to start back in 1901 and play through until the present. They fixed the prices from last years game, so now players will have $60 contracts to start out and such, instead of the millions they made in previous versions. Trades have been made more realistic, and no longer does the computer ignore potential. When you get a rookie, you get 2 numbers. You get a current rating and a potential rating. IE John Smith is a 84/91, meaning currently he is an 84 overall but possibly may reach a 91. This system sounds logical but its not. Pitchers who are 84 overall currently, often will pitch like they are much worse, as they will have 5+ ERAs. Once they begin struggling in the major leagues, there rating plummets, and thus you see the problem. Hitters are the same way.

As you start going you realize that there are WAY too many busts. Players like Christy Mathewson, Babe Ruth, Jackie Robinson and Joe DiMaggio end up TERRIBLE most of the time (Ruth hit .240 and 123 career home runs in the current game I am playing.) This kind of stuff is stupid, because these are GREAT players, and they shouldn't be awful. Almost all players don't become major league ready until they are 26 or 27, so most of the time they don't get the career stat their real life counterparts do. Pitchers also have a very short prime, usually maxing out at 5 years. Most pitchers I would agree with that, but guys like Clemens and such have much longer primes. Sometimes players overall ratings will drop from the 90s to the 70s for no reason, not age, not performance but just because. This is heavily annoying if you invest a large sum of money into a guy and he suddenly goes down to a scrub, because there is almost no way to ditch him without giving up other talent you need. Players also decrease after a serious injury, and this is fine. The only problem is the player almost NEVER gets better. This also bogs down the player quite a bit.

You cannot hire coaches or managers, which considering all the other control you get, you should be able to do. I think you should also have to field minor league teams. Yes there is minor league teams, but they are just random players, and they get stats, but it doesn't make sense because there can be as little as one player on a team.

Drafting is much better this year. They moved it from January 17th, like last year, which made no sense, to June 5th, in the middle of the season which it should be. There are only 7 rounds, instead of the 50 rounds in real life. I know it would take a hardcore gamer to want to draft 50 rounds every year, so I don't see a problem with 7 rounds with the current system. In years past, the computer only drafted on current rating, instead of potential so the user could get some serious steals late in the draft.

They changed the look and interface of the game, but I wouldn't say they were bad in years before this. It is kind of like fixing something that was not broke, but it gives it a new feel.

You can of course play games, but its about as exciting as government television. Pitching is pretty much picking a pitch, and aiming it down the middle because you can't control where it goes. If you try to, it will be a ball or not in that location. Hitting, you pick a pitch and where you think it is gonna be. You have to get both right in order to get a hit most of the time, so most of the time you just hit "Don't Guess" over and over again.

Now don't get me wrong, this is still a fun game to play. I just feel like the changes they have made have taken this game a step backwards. In principle I agree at what they are trying to do. Are there busts in real life? Yes. But I don't think the games greatest players should have to suffer from this.

Bottom line, however, is it fun? Yes. Is it worth it? Yes. But I would choose 2007 over this one.

Reviewer's Rating:   3.5 - Good

Originally Posted: 04/10/07

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