SCEA announced that it has signed Philadelphia Phillies All-Star first basemen Ryan Howard as the cover athlete for MLB 08 The Show, the upcoming installment in the baseball series for the PS2, PSP and PS3. Here’s the scoop:
Known for his prolific power and ability to drive in runs, Howard is just the second player in Major League Baseball history to win the Rookie of the Year honors and a Most Valuable Player award in successive seasons. During his 2006 MVP season, Howard led the Major Leagues in home runs (58), which broke the record for most home runs in a sophomore season set in 1947 by Ralph Kiner (51), won the All-Star Game Home Run Derby with a total of 23 blasts, and was the 2006 National League Hank Aaron Award recipient, the award given to the top hitter in each league.
Last season, while helping lead the Phillies to the 2007 National League Division Series against the Colorado Rockies by muscling out 47 home runs and driving in 136 runs, Howard became the fastest player in MLB history to hit 100 home runs. The record-breaking accomplishment was achieved in only 325 games, 60 less than the 385 games that Ralph Kiner needed to hit his first 100 home runs from 1946 to 1948.
The game is due out early this year and will build upon the series by including new features such as the Road to the Show mode, as well as custom characters and more.
SCEA has officially announced MLB 08: The Show, the next entry in their internally developed baseball game. Set for release during Spring 2008, the game is being made exclusively for the PS2, PSP and PS3, and will feature various enhancements and new features to make it a worthwhile upgrade. Here’s the scoop:
To deliver the closest experience possible, next to actually trying to make it in the Majors, MLB 08 THE SHOW introduces a more immersive Road to The Show mode. As gamers attempt to make a starting line-up in the Big Leagues, playing on both offense and defense from a custom-created player’s perspective, a more robust dynamic goal system and a new career advancement system will determine when a player is eligible for a promotion. Additionally, custom-created players are more interactive. As a position player, gamers will be able to further adjust that players positioning, catchers will endure more defense situations, and pitchers will now experience mound visits with user interaction – all making Road to The Show mode even more realistic.
As the only first party franchise officially licensed by Major League Baseball Properties Inc. (MLBP), Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM) and the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA), MLB 08 THE SHOW features more than 3,000 individual player animations, including personalized stances, pitching animations, individual swings, batting rituals and motion captures from MLB® players. Additionally, the franchise adds to the realism by including Umpire Personalities combined with Interactive Hot and Cold Zones and Player-scaled Strike Zones, Release Point Pitching combined with Adaptive Pitching Intelligence (API) and the Pitch Command System (PCS), and the most comprehensive commentary ever produced for a sports title, featuring the three-man booth of Rex Huddler, Matt Vasgerian and Dave Campbell.
Providing players with some additional performance incentives, the MLB franchise introduces the new Progressive Batting Performance feature, which will both reward players for superior performance and penalize them for hitting slumps. Specific to each individual batter, players will be rewarded with slight contract bonuses, or punished with slight decreases in contract, based on how that batter that performs beyond his “natural ability” while under user control. Adding to the online feature set, which includes customizable Online League Play with up to 30 teams, scrolling MLB Score Ticker and more, MLB 08 THE SHOW introduces SCOUT (SportsConnect Online User Tracking), which allows gamers to set and store their game preferences on the MLB server, and then enables the system to look for a Quick Match with opponents that fit similar competitive criteria.
The game also features Pitcher/Batter analysis, both in-game and post game, offering a breakdown of how a batter performed based on LHP or RHP, pitch type and the result. MLB 08 will also let players use custom soundtracks in case they do not like the provided tracks. Finally, the game will feature various multiplayer modes and support for EyeToy.
SCEA has officially announced MLB 07: The Show for the PS3, PS2 and PSP. The next entry in the series will be available in Spring 2007 and is the only first party game licensed by MLBP, MLBAM and the MLBPA.
Adding to its already robust online feature set, the MLB franchise will now include Online League Play, which gives gamers the ability to set up leagues with up to 30 teams, complete statistical tracking, point benefits and full customization, while the My Sliders feature allows users to create their perfect game settings and upload them to the MLB 07 The Show server for others to try out.
For fans attempting to master the timeless art of pitching, MLB 07 The Show introduces some innovative new features such as Adaptive Pitching Intelligence (API), which allows users to either shake off the catcher, or trust the calls he makes which are based on batter tendencies and the pitcher’s strengths. Additionally, the Pitch Command System (PCS) delivers authenticity and strategy to pitch selection by offering players a predetermined pitch comfort level based on a best to worst pitch scenario. Providing an even more authentic feel to the game, the new Umpire Personalities feature provides a new challenge to pitchers as each umpire has their own version of the strike zone, unique tendencies and animations.
As developers begin to harness the power and potential found within PS3, MLB 07 The Show showcases its abilities with additional innovative features such as crowd interaction, which can be seen like never before with a vast array of new ambient elements including fans reaching for foul balls, the seventh inning stretch, the wave, standing ovations and much more. Also making the game more realistic, gamers will now be able to detail the different pitch grips and arm angles that a pitcher has when throwing each pitch. Scouting these details in Replay Mode shows players what to look for in release point and pitch arm angle from 15 different pitches. These new subtleties deliver an unrivaled virtual experience on PS3.
Returning key features for the MLB franchise include the popular Career and Season Modes, Career Spotlight and Exhibition Mode. In addition, MLB 07 The Show provides fans with the features they expect in an unrivaled simulation, such as advanced batting and base running controls, interactive hot and cold zones, player-scaled strike zones, release point pitching and the most comprehensive commentary ever produced for a sports videogame, featuring the three-man booth of Rex Huddler, Matt Vasgerian and Dave Campbell.
Along with all the key franchise features, returning gameplay favorites for PlayStation 2 include Rivalry Mode, which allows fans to set-up, track and maintain heated rivalries, King of the Diamond Mode, the classic playground duel where a pitcher and batter from opposing teams will square off head-to-head, Franchise mode, where players take control of the entire team, the Home Run Derby and EyeToy™ functionality. MLB 07 The Show for the PSP system continues to be a fan favorite with its core features and ability to play anytime, anywhere, on the go. Plus, sports fanatics can utilize the PSP system’s online news service to get the latest MLB news feeds online or save them to the Memory Stick Duo™ and review them offline at their convenience.