Tagged: 2K Sports

Video Game Review: MLB 2K9

I was going have my first real blog post be my 2009 MLB and Cleveland Indians preview, but this is something I just have to talk about now…

Mlb2k9.jpg

I have a migraine… and MLB 2K9 for the Xbox 360 is the reason why! This is hands-down the most broken sports game I have ever played in my life and it’s a damn shame that this is the only choice for 360 owners who want a baseball game.

A little history lesson for those not familiar with the games developer, 2K Sports. In 2005, right before SEGA released ESPN MLB 2K5, Take-Two brought the third-party rights to the Major League Baseball license. So, they created 2K Sports and slapped their name on SEGA’s finished work (even though you can still see SEGA’s logo in the backgrounds throughout the game). Now, I was a little mad that SEGA was thrown to the side like that as they’re my favorite game company. But, I knew it was buisness and besides, 2K5 was a DAMN GOOD game! Plus, it was only $20 bucks… pretty good deal if I say so myself.

I was stuck with playing 2K5 and my original Xbox until I finally got a 360 this year. Of course, being a baseball fan I wanted a MLB game. Only problem? the games by 2K are the ONLY baseball games on the 360. The only other MLB licensed game is ‘MLB: The Show’ and that’s only on Sony’s game systems. So, before I paid $60 for this game, I decided to rent it first.

Thus began one of the most frustrating gaming experiences in my life…

First off, the menus are confusing as hell! If your trying to go back to the last menu you were at… good luck! You can’t go back by pressing the B button (like EVERY OTHER game) or the back button on the controller. You have to find something in the menu itself to take you back. It doesn’t seem like a big deal, but I just want to pick up the game and play! Not waste 15 minutes of my life trying to get the game going.

The graphics on the stadiums are epic! Epic to the point to where you think you’re looking at a real photo of the ballpark! Too bad the same can’t by said about the players in the game. They honestly look like stoned zombies suffering for both insomnia and Down’s syndrome and not at all like the players they are meant to represent. Plus, puffs of dust from the dirt look like something out of a Roadrunner cartoon.

And while I have no real problem with ads video games, but they should of thought some things out more in this one. For example, The Indians ballpark is Progressive Field, named after the insurance company… So, why are logos for State Farm on the center field wall and the scoreboard? I realize State Farm in a big sponsor of Major League Baseball, but still, they could of avoided putting the logo in that park and just stuck with the play-by-play guys saying the staring lineups and replay were sponsored by State Farm like on TV.

Now, the gameplay… Dear God! The controls are awful! For both batting and pitching, you have a choice between Classic Control (where you just push one for the main buttons) or Total Control (where your use the right thumbstick).

In pitching, total control is useless! You can never get the pitch to go where you want and if you do, you won’t throw it hard enough to help you any. However, the classic control in batting is the problem. Why? It simply doesn’t work. You’ll get a great pitch to hit but when you press A to swing… you won’t do it! The batter will almost always check his swing on hittable pitches leaving you 10 seconds away from breaking your TV in frustration.

The fielding and baserunning isn’t any better. The outfielders act like the ball is likely to kill them and run away from it! Even when you get one of the player in place to catch a popfly ‘Can-Of-Corn’ style, the ball will fly over his head and fall for a base hit! WHY?!

The baserunners are beyond clueless. You try to advance them to 2nd or 3rd and they’ll just stand in place until the other team moves the ball too close to advance and throw you out because of it! Every aspect of this game is broken beyond repair! It’s more frustrating than Sonic the Hedgehog on the 360 and if you’ve ever played that, you should get the idea on how bad MLB 2K9 really is!

Bottom line: 2K Sports seems to think since they have the only third-party MLB license, they can halfass it and people will still buy it because it’s the only one available. WRONG! I paid only $3 bucks for a 3-day rental of this and I still feel ripped off! I won’t be blowing any money to buy this game even if I find it used. I’ll wait for MLB 2K10… can’t be any worse than this.

My season preview will be posted either later tonight or first thing tomorrow.
C’ya then,
~Casey