MLB 2k11 The Show

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Jump over to Operation Sports to check out some trailers and info on both games. Stand out so far for me is the The Show (although I really, finally, got into the MLB 2k game last year and found it more fun, at least in the 'My Career' mode then The Show (more features, better scheme for looking at the ball being pitched), is that The Show is going to offer Co-Op! Up to four players. Very cool. (see interview).

I think the two games should have separate threads.

Then again, 2k10's didn't get a lot of action..hm.

Personally I can't go back to just pushing a button to do things in the Show. All the analog stuff that 2k does seemed like unneeded complication before they got it working right, but then they got it working right.

I will most likely wait for 2k11 to come to the red box and see how the franchise and My Player stuff is changed.

You should note that The Show came up with analog controls that will be similar to the MLB 2K series now. It's probably worth looking at.

I think 2K11 will be a solid release this year, although only a slight upgrade over last 2K10. But if they get errors in, and clean up some of the fielding issues, it could really be a fantastic game. It'll be a day one purchase for me.

Jayhawker wrote:

You should note that The Show came up with analog controls that will be similar to the MLB 2K series now. It's probably worth looking at.

I think 2K11 will be a solid release this year, although only a slight upgrade over last 2K10. But if they get errors in, and clean up some of the fielding issues, it could really be a fantastic game. It'll be a day one purchase for me.

Eh.. I'd have to use my roommate's PS3. While that's fine, I just don't much like buying games for stuff I don't own. If only I could get *him* to buy it.

I'm actually cool with errors not being in the game, honestly. Not sure what other fielding issues you mean, but I'm sure they're there. Just not a concern for me.

So I made my very first blog post over at Operation Sports and it made the front page. I even got a couple of comments, which is cool. I wrote abut the nature of fielding in the 2K baseball games. I pretty much agree with Blind_Evil that the fielding in 2K10 is actually better than many consider it.

The issue is that it can feel like the AI is doing too much of the heavy lifting. What I wrote addresses this, as well as what I think should be fixed in the upcoming version.

http://www.operationsports.com/Jayha...

Jayhawker wrote:

You should note that The Show came up with analog controls that will be similar to the MLB 2K series now. It's probably worth looking at.

I think 2K11 will be a solid release this year, although only a slight upgrade over last 2K10. But if they get errors in, and clean up some of the fielding issues, it could really be a fantastic game. It'll be a day one purchase for me.

I'd say the controls are closer to MVP NCAA Baseball, but I get that you're just trying to compare apples to apples in the most understandable way.

Blind_Evil wrote:

I'm actually cool with errors not being in the game, honestly. Not sure what other fielding issues you mean, but I'm sure they're there. Just not a concern for me.

Not to go all BUT IT'S REALISTIC DON'T YOU WANT REALISM IN YOUR SIMULATIONS!?, but don't you want errors in a baseball game if they occur in real life? I get perhaps not wanting them if the AI is predetermining the error for you, but if user error is in play, then an error occurring when you botch a play in the field just makes sense.

Well, I prefer the errors to be predetermined. That way, I if I play a poor defensive guy for his bat, there is a trade-off. As it stands, there is no penalty for playing guys out of position. It's the same way with out current football games. They have really gotten to the point where a low rated passer is going to be a liability in terms of accuracy.

But I don't think the lack of errors was that big of a deal in the big picture.

The Show added analog controls? Finally. Awesome. The demo for 2K10 last year was enough to show me I didn't like pushing buttons anymore. It's all about feel. So glad the Show went this way.

Jayhawker wrote:

Well, I prefer the errors to be predetermined. That way, I if I play a poor defensive guy for his bat, there is a trade-off. As it stands, there is no penalty for playing guys out of position. It's the same way with out current football games. They have really gotten to the point where a low rated passer is going to be a liability in terms of accuracy.

But I don't think the lack of errors was that big of a deal in the big picture.

Well I was just speaking to Blind_Evil on that one since I wasn't sure if he was against them because they might be decided for you instead of by you.

Brian Wilson is God.

Or Zack Galifinakis' long lost twin brother.

Can't he be both?

That was absolutely great Jay'. Thanks for sharing. This guy could do stand-up for a few pennies now and again.(compared to his regular wage) He's good!!

So here is the full commercial with Brian Wilson talking to Digital Brian.

Rat Boy wrote:

Can't he be both?

I love the avatar. That is full of win.

Also, there has been plenty of talk about improvements and new features in MLB 2K11. Here is some stuff from the Destructoid article.

Fielding

The fielding in MLB 2K10 was often frustrating. So the studio focused on defense for MLB 2K11, making important changes in a few areas that go a long way toward improving the feel of fielding. Ratings now play a more significant role in the game, thanks to a tweaked throwing meter and a new method for catching fly balls. On a ground ball to an infielder, the throw meter will have a green zone and a red zone; the size of each depends on the fielder’s throw accuracy. For Robinson Cano, as you might imagine, most of the bar is green. And even if you overshoot all the way into the small red zone, his throw might only pull Mark Teixeira off the first-base bag. But someone like Luis Castillo will not only have a sizable red zone -- if you end up in it, his throw is likely to sail into the stands.

Fielding balls in the air is similarly ratings-dependent. On a fly ball or pop-up, you’ll see a large white circle; the ball will end up somewhere within it. A small yellow circle will come up as the ball is falling to Earth, and it gradually shrinks to let you know exactly where the ball will land. For a good fielder, the yellow circle will come up quickly after the white one. So with a defender like Carl Crawford, you’ll be able to get into position to make the catch well before the ball comes down. But if you have, say, Adam Dunn in the outfield, pulling down a fly ball is going to be an adventure.

Pitching

On the pitching front, subtle changes seem like they’ll provide a ramped-up challenge. In MLB 2K10, it was way too easy to pitch with pinpoint accuracy -- even with sub-par hurlers -- once you got good enough. Visual Concepts has introduced variance for missed analog-stick gestures, so even if your gesture is off in a particular manner each time, you won’t be able to easily predict the behavior of the pitch: it might break more or less. Real pitchers can’t simply aim a pitch at a particular spot and get it there every time, and even MLB 2K pros won’t have that luxury anymore. There’s now a variable strike zone, too, which brings in the time-honored “human element” of umpires.

From Kotaku:

Broadcast View

As you tour the 30 ballparks of Major League Baseball 2K11, you'll see games there from a center field camera view unique to each stadium. I can vouch for this feature's authenticity - because I did the work behind it.

MLB 2K11 will feature a new broadcast-style presentation in which the angles of the center field camera view will change for all 30 major league ballparks, mimicking real-life broadcasts. Visual Concepts and 2K Sports credited the feature to this column I wrote last April, in which I used the camera settings of MLB 2K10 to recreate, as close as possible, what you saw in the center field shot from each baseball stadium.

...

I queued up a game between the Tigers and Twins from Minnesota's Target Field, and as it prepared for the first pitch from Kevin Slowey, the broadcast camera cut to what I termed Pitcher 1-1-10 Right, for the view's settings in 2K10. It's a new dead-center field look that provides a truer perspective on how a curveball breaks. The Twins were one of a few teams to switch to it last year.

The zoom-out also reduces the size of the apparent strike zone, if you're pitching from this setting. 2K Sports figured that, if you were the visiting team in this park (or any other) and you were accustomed to a different pitching angle, the gamer's unfamiliarity would approximate the unfamiliarity baseball players feel playing in a different ballpark.

And for a really intereting new feature that has not been totally revealed yet, 2K announced Dynamic Player Ratings. It looks like they are expanding the feature that kept me tuned into 2K10 the most, MLB Today.

Watch your favorite MLB® pitcher strike out the side in a real game, then watch his stats improve in your game. Dynamic Player Ratings update daily in MLB® Today, Franchise, and My Player.

None of the previews really went into this, as you can't really use it until the season gets started. But as awesome as MLB Today was, I can't wait to see how they implement this.

All in all, there seems to be more improvement than I was expecting. My two biggest hopes were for more variable pitching and more realistic fielding. Pitching seems like they get it. We'll see how it works. For fielding, I feel like they went beyond what I was looking for and really innovated in ways that could make it fantastic.

In the words of Bart Scott, "Can't wait!"

Some cool information was released today in regards to the Dynamic Ratings and how they will work in MLB Today and franchise. It's a rally long article and goes into quite a bit of detail on how it works and what it will be like in-game.

For MLB Today, this is makes my favorite mode of play 100 times more awesome. To play out games during the year, and to have the ratings of my players and as well as my opponent's dynamically reflect how each player has been performing over the last four weeks of the season, with more weight given to the most recent performances is going to be like he holy grail of sports gaming.

I'm not so convinced this is going to be a good mode of offline franchise play. Because it would seem that it would force a player to only trend one direction in a season. It's something I will have to see in action. Maybe the fact that pitchers are also dynamically adjusted, players can get on hot streaks when facing poor pitchers, and get stopped cold when facing a hot pitcher. It will be interesting to see if they can organically reproduce hot and cold streaks.

My time with Diamond Mind Baseball and other text sims lead me to believe they can't. The nature of random chance produces surprisingly accurate models of streaks. There is no need to artificially encourage them. But with MLB today, you have real life events doing the work, and I think it could be perfect.

MLB Today

For MLB Today, we use the real life results from the previous four weeks of play to drive the DPRS and determine rating adjustments. This means that, while playing MLB Today games, the players are adjusting based on their real world performance. We don’t know who is going to slump or who is going to get hot but the DPRS takes care of this for everyone as the season unfolds. Each series between teams is going to have a different feel and landscape of player ratings. Who is hot and cold will reflect the real world MLB players. If next season, the Oakland Athletics are on fire as they roll into a series against division rival Los Angeles Angels, it will be a very different matchup between the teams.

No one can predict what the upcoming season is going bring to us. But now when you play MLB Today, you will experience the most accurate representation of how the players and teams are currently playing. You are going to be able to participate in the MLB season in a new way that brings you even closer to the real MLB.

Franchise and My Player

In Franchise and My Player modes, the DPRS uses the player results generated by playing or simulating games in your season. Both Franchise and My Player are designed and intended to allow you to play multiple seasons which is why we use the results generated within your Franchise or My Player. When you call up a rookie in his second year after the draft, and he starts lighting up the league, we want you to see him go into a hot streak and get the benefit of playing above expectations. As some of your veteran players age and struggle at the plate, we want them to go cold and for you to decide if you want to bench them or keep them in the lineup. In the next section I’ll show examples of how the DPRS works within franchise mode.

Here some hi-res screenshots from that article, courtesy of Operation Sports. See more here.

IMAGE(http://media.operationsports.com/shots/1296769011-media.jpg)
IMAGE(http://media.operationsports.com/shots/1296768991-media.jpg)

These next two shots show how facing Prince Fielder can change depending on his hot streak. But more importantly, it shows off the new dynamic broadcast cam. The view from each stadium is crafted based in the real life placement of the broadcast camera in that stadium.

IMAGE(http://media.operationsports.com/shots/1296768925-media.jpg)
IMAGE(http://media.operationsports.com/shots/1296768912-media.jpg)

Ther must be a heat wave in SF. People usually don't dress like that at Giants games.

Head over to Operation Sports for a nice, long video on '11: The Show. Shows how the analog stick works in pitching, batting and fielding. Also explains and shows briefly how co-op works (besides internet, same console...yea!!). Plus much more. (where are the demos for this or 2K11...please hurry up:>) Getting the baseball itch (I will probably end up getting both...to my pocketbooks chagrin).

One of the guys at OS, jeffy7777, put together an awesome list of "what we know' about the upcoming MLB 2K11.

[size=20]What we know about MLB 2K11 so far......
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Completely revamped fielding system

- MLB 2K10 had a big flaw when it came to fielding: No errors......That has been fixed.

- Fielder ratings now play a big part in the gameplay: "Last year, it didn't really matter what a fielder's rating was. Everyone basically made the same plays. But this year everything is based on the fielding rating.....We didn't want to fix fielding by just determining instantly whether someone was going to catch the ball or not. We want to make it half ratings and half your doing."

- Improved Throwing Meters: the throwing meter has a green zone and a red zone, the size of each depends on the fielder’s throw accuracy. Throwing Meter accuracy will now have a much greater impact on the quality of your throws and errors. "A throw in the red isn't automatic failure - if he's a good fielder, the inaccuracy will be less pronounced."

- "Fielding balls in the air is similarly ratings-dependent. On a fly ball or pop-up, you’ll see a large white circle; the ball will end up somewhere within it. A small yellow circle will come up as the ball is falling to Earth, and it gradually shrinks to let you know exactly where the ball will land. For a good fielder, the yellow circle will come up quickly after the white one. So with a defender like Carl Crawford, you’ll be able to get into position to make the catch well before the ball comes down. But if you have, say, Adam Dunn in the outfield, pulling down a fly ball is going to be an adventure."

- "Baseball video games typically auto-steer fielders to the flight of the ball for a short moment as the game transitions from the hitting view to the overhead fielding view. That break on the ball has been shortened considerably in MLB 2K11."

- New Fielding Animations.....In addition to new animations for errors, bobbles etc. "We also shot all new fielding animations where good fielders charge the ball and bare hand it, then wing it to first while falling down (while a bad fielder might need to get a better grip before they throw or double clutch). In '2K10,' this play is just a regular groundout. If Ichiro doesn't make good contact, it's just a grounder to third. But now he's trying to leg it out to first as the third baseman charges in to make the play. It's a completely different experience."

- Improved Fielding AI

Pitching

- Pitching is now more challenging in terms of accuracy: "In MLB 2K10, it was way too easy to pitch with pinpoint accuracy -- even with sub-par hurlers -- once you got good enough. Visual Concepts has introduced variance for missed analog-stick gestures, so even if your gesture is off in a particular manner each time, you won’t be able to easily predict the behavior of the pitch: it might break more or less. Real pitchers can’t simply aim a pitch at a particular spot and get it there every time, and even MLB 2K pros won’t have that luxury anymore."

- "Now if you continuously miss a pitch, you will not be able to know where it will wind up, just like in real life, if you miss badly, the pitch may end up anywhere in the zone."

- Variable Strike Zones

- "There's now a stat for how many pitches a batter averages on a plate appearance. Basically, 2K11 knows if a batter tends to extend an at-bat by taking a lot of pitches (or fouling a lot of them off). If balanced right, this little detail could add an extra layer of realism to the pitcher-batter duels."

- New Pitch Introduced - Split-Finger Changeup, thanks to Roy Halladay's suggestion.

- The Pitch Count is now accessible at all times via the pause menu

- "One of the improvements he (Halladay) suggested was to have the batters’ hot and cold zones displayed throughout the entire at-bat, rather than only for the first pitch. The reasoning behind this was that Halladay and Phillies catcher Carlos Ruiz memorize every hitter’s hot and cold zone before each start and they pitch to the hitter’s weaknesses, so players should get that benefit when playing 2K11 as well. "

Hitting

- New Hit Type: Chopper.... "and we shot all new animations for speedsters leaving the batter's box and trying to beat out the play at first."

- "The ball physics have been rewritten so that its reactions to dirt, grass and brick are all new. The the ball can fade in different directions and it isn't always the difference of a single pixel for a strike or a ball."

- "At the plate, in single-player mode as a hitter, a new camera angle replaces the cut from the batting view to the field. Now the camera follows the flight of the ball to the outfield, from home plate instead of trailing behind it. You base runners were off camera and managed from the HUD in the old mode anyway. It's an enhancement consistent with the broadcast presentation tuning that, as we noted earlier, features park specific camera angles that mimic those of real life games on TV."

General

- Injuries are back in

- "Animation is smoother across the board, with less popping in and out of certain states"

- New General Animations: "On the note of detail, some additions have been implemented to bring out the high drama of the game. As a tense no-hitter progresses through the innings, pitchers are going to show their tension or frustration, base coaches are going to be shown coaching at the bases. Pitchers, like the Giants' Tim Lincecum, show their traditional stance on the mound. Using hours of captured footage of famous players doing their thing, 2K Sports aims for an air of authenticity when you see a famed batter stepping out of the box to dust off a shoe, or walking off the field when struck-out."

- MLB 2K11 will feature a new broadcast-style presentation in which the angles of the center field camera view will change for all 30 major league ballparks, mimicking real-life broadcasts.

- If the view is too problematic, or if you prefer to pitch from the catcher's perspective (facing the incoming pitch), you can lock the default camera angle to a single setting, or make your home park's camera setting uniform across every game you play.

Baserunning

- "Runners caught between bases can hold the two triggers rather than tap a single direction so that they can make the call when to run at the right moment."

Graphics

- New Player Models: "Player body types have also received a complete overhaul."

- Along with all these body types, we made sure that the players kept the right shape as the camera moved further away from them and they become smaller on the screen. This way, when the camera pans out to see your player run the bases, he’ll maintain his shape rather then popping back to an average size body, as was the case in 2K10.

- Better Player Faces

- Improved Uniforms/Jerseys: "Uniforms have been reworked to better represent authentic MLB uniforms. We added details, such as name plates and the Cool Base pin holes, which helped us achieve higher realism. Folds and wrinkles in the jersey also move more smoothly and accurately, animating with each of the player’s movements."

- Hats and helmets have a closer fit to the player’s heads.

- Improved Lighting

- New Crowd Models with more variety in clothing, size, and shape, as well as more accurate team colors, and rally towels in the Postseason.

More info and examples of improved Graphics

Dynamic Player Ratings

- Dynamic Player Rating system (DPRS for short) dynamically adjusts player ratings to represent recent performance.

- "For MLB Today, we use the real life results from the previous four weeks of play to drive the DPRS and determine rating adjustments. This means that, while playing MLB Today games, the players are adjusting based on their real world performance."

- "In Franchise and My Player modes, the DPRS uses the player results generated by playing or simulating games in your season."

- "In Franchise and My Player mode, we now get to see the results of players having breakout years, rookies playing beyond their years, seasoned vets finding their groove again and players faltering and playing poorly. These changes and updates happen automatically on a daily basis so the players in our franchise are playing like their stats suggest. "

- "With Dynamic Player Ratings and MLB Today we can now play every streak and slump that develops in the MLB. No subjectivity, no hype, we are going to let each player’s performance do the talking."

- "Like last year, we show the batter’s power and contact rating versus the pitcher on the mound at the start of every at bat. This served as a great reminder of player ratings for both your own team and the opposing lineup. We now show the adjusted ratings for the batter instead of their base ratings. If the adjusted power or contact rating is up or down they will be colored GREEN or RED. We also added some callout text to let you know the batter is hot or cold."

Much more detail on Dynamic Player Ratings

AI/Management

- "As for player management, pitchers now will get a pitch-count range that CPU managers, especially those in the My Player career mode, will watch more closely. No more leaving in a dead-armed hurler whose stamina ran out before he reached the 100th pitch."

- "Situational pitching changes to create more advantageous matchups will also be more frequent"

- "When you're hitting, you will see in the HUD whether the history of this pitcher-vs-hitter matchup favors one side or the other, regardless of overall stats. The game will perform accordingly."

My Player:

- New My Player are achievements meant to better the team

- New Fielding Animations unlock as your player improves: "Last year, as you improved your player's defense in My Player, all it did was adjust the results on a dice roll. The animations all remained the same day after day no matter how good you got. But this year, as you improve your player, you're actually opening up new tiers of animations that will really show off how good you are."

Franchise:

- Improved player progression system: "We gutted our player progression system," adds Bailey. "Now we factor in a player's potential, their age, their position, their style of play. Look at Buster Posey. He's got 5-star potential, and right now he's at 4 stars in the game and trending up and we show it all to you right on the screen.This year, everything is right there in front of you. A lot of this stuff used to be under the hood, but now, it's right there for everyone to see."

- In-game injuries play a role this year: "Forget the days of a screen just randomly popping up and telling you a player is hurt. In "MLB 2K11" you will see your player get injured on the field (all new motion-captured animations), then it's up to you to manage how to play him. You can keep him in, but his ratings are going to take a hit, or you can decide whether you want to put him on the DL or just bench him and hope he's a fast healer. And while these decisions can be automated for anyone who doesn't want to tinker, for those gamers looking for that extra edge that putting someone on three 15-day DL lists can give them as opposed to one 60-day stint, the choice is yours on how to deal with everything from a freak injury or a flu to an older player dealing with chronic back pain as older players will break down if you play them too much during the season"

- Player ratings now rise and fall depending on how a player is playing during a rolling 30-day period (Hot and Cold Streaks actually temporarily affect player ratings......See Dynamic Player Ratings above).

Sources

Sounds like an awful lot of those changes were influenced by the NBA 2k series.

This is probably a good thing.

And goddamn, I want to be Brian Wilson. Eff that actor on the Dos Equis commercials, he is the most interesting man in the world.

This sounds great Jay'. Thanks for the news. One thing tho', how about connectivity? Is it just too hard for baseball games. I've tried PSN and of course, bad. But also with XBL. Football seem's to work. Golf worked back when. But baseball just seem's to tough a nut to crack when it comes to on-line play. Too many variables and etc. (of course too, although we all get excited about it, many of us usually don't pursue on-line leagues for baseball. My self included. I tried it a Vego and it worked for awhile, but folks got frustrated at the lag. I found it small, and although a bummer, as long as it's happening to both sides, and 'is' slight, go with it.)

Can't wait for a demo, but might just go and fool with 2k10 (but I'm trying to finish up some other sports games too before I end up ignoring them for baseball!)

MLB 2K9 got online play right. But een then, it was still tough.

for everything there is to love abut baseball, the one absolute thing that has to be right is the pitcher vs batter match-up. MLB 2K9 is the only game I have ever played where there was little enough lag that you could actually judge a ball to be a strike or ball in time to make an informed decision. If you don't have that, then it becomes a game of rock, paper, scissors, as the hitter has to guess what the pitch will be before it is released. And that is not fun. Or, you can choose to throw nothing but strikes, but that isn't fun either.

MLB 2K10 was close, but was off just enough that it was frustrating. There were times it was good, and then other times the lag was too much. And that variability really affects timing when trying to hit.

Because of all of the problems games have had over the years, it is hard to find people to play with that will accept you not throwing strikes, even in 2K9. Many of the leagues will have rules on how many balls you can throw. And there is a lot of drama always involved.

At this point, unless 2K11 does something radically different, I'd prefer the online batting to be sim. Let the pitcher use his tools to get the CPU batter out, and let the defense play. Then let the offense control the baserunning, including steals. It would be more fun than the text sim games I used to play online. But I doubt people want to surrender that much control. The batter could still decide on contact or power, or even bunt.

It would sure beat the yearly online play modes that no one enjoys now.

Jayhawker wrote:

MLB 2K9 got online play right. But een then, it was still tough.

for everything there is to love abut baseball, the one absolute thing that has to be right is the pitcher vs batter match-up. MLB 2K9 is the only game I have ever played where there was little enough lag that you could actually judge a ball to be a strike or ball in time to make an informed decision. If you don't have that, then it becomes a game of rock, paper, scissors, as the hitter has to guess what the pitch will be before it is released. And that is not fun. Or, you can choose to throw nothing but strikes, but that isn't fun either.

MLB 2K10 was close, but was off just enough that it was frustrating. There were times it was good, and then other times the lag was too much. And that variability really affects timing when trying to hit.

Because of all of the problems games have had over the years, it is hard to find people to play with that will accept you not throwing strikes, even in 2K9. Many of the leagues will have rules on how many balls you can throw. And there is a lot of drama always involved.

At this point, unless 2K11 does something radically different, I'd prefer the online batting to be sim. Let the pitcher use his tools to get the CPU batter out, and let the defense play. Then let the offense control the baserunning, including steals. It would be more fun than the text sim games I used to play online. But I doubt people want to surrender that much control. The batter could still decide on contact or power, or even bunt.

It would sure beat the yearly online play modes that no one enjoys now.

I would be interested in something like this. Just need to wrap my head around it better. Sorta like managing, but with some on field participation. And as you say, with the 'dynamic' aspect, much more fun then text sims and better pitcher/batter stats. I take it this can be set up this way? Once done, would it still be acceptable to 2K's league participation (for stats)?

Pretty cool trailer showing off the new fielding animations.

So 2K has their latest Dev Diary up, and this one really hits it out of the park! This one covers Pitching and Hitting. In addition to really beefing up the pitching, they have added a ton of little things folks have been wanting that should have been in the game. You can now save camera settings, you can still record achievements if you tweak sliders, opposite field HR's have been cranked way down.

Like the last one, this is a really long read, and it is chock full of info on what they did to improve their game. If they pull off everything they are claiming they have done, it is going to play every bit as good, if not much better than The Show. Seriously, these guys are really getting it. It won't, however, look as good as the Show. I think it looks fine, and even better than last year. But the Show is on another level in terms of graphics and animations.

We just need to see it in motion and then give it a test drive to verify that this has really all come together.

A couple of highlights from the pitching section:

There are two factors that drive control in MLB 2K11. One is based on the control rating for a particular pitch and the other is based on your gesture. There is more room for error when performing a gesture with higher rated control pitchers. Also, when a gesture is not precise with a guy like Halladay, the ball will not deviate as far from the intended location. However, a lack of gesture precision with a more wild pitcher will result in the ball ending up much further from the intended location. The lower the control rating, the less predictable the missed pitch will be. Either way, you will be throwing more balls in MLB 2K11, even with the aces. You will even walk batters. This is not a bad thing, this is baseball. As the game goes on into the late innings and the pitch count increases, a pitcher’s control will slowly deteriorate. Whether it is a lack of gesture precision, the result of sub-par ratings, or the result of a tired arm, the concept of control is one of the main factors contributing to realistic pitch counts.
Rather than setting out to make pitching harder across the board, we simply made the results more realistic on a per player basis. In the 2010 season, Cliff Lee walked a batter once every 11.8 innings. His former Texas Ranger teammate on the other hand, C.J. Wilson, walked a batter once every 2.2 innings. How many batters you walk in MLB 2K11 will depend on a combination between your right stick skills and the strengths of the pitcher you have on the mound. Now, if you are concerned that a) Cliff Lee-like walk numbers are not challenging enough or b) C.J. Wilson-like walk numbers are not fun, have no fear. A “Pitcher Control” slider is one of several new difficulty sliders that we added to the game this year. Through the Pitcher Control slider, you can change the concept of control to be more or less challenging. This new slider will allow you to customize the pitching experience to your liking. This is a sensitive slider that will make it noticeably easier or harder to throw strikes. And don’t worry,we are not disabling achievements this year if you change the sliders. It’s your game and it should be played however you want to play it.
While making all of these changes and improvements, we also realized that our manager logic needed some work as well. The AI managers will now be monitoring these pitch counts and will take it into consideration when deciding who to warm up in the bullpen or when to pull a pitcher from the game. However, the AI manager is looking at a lot more than just pitch count. Today, I was able to chase Kansas City’s Vin Mazzaro out of the game in the middle of the first inning after scoring a quick 3 runs on his Royals. Performance and composure will mean just as much to the AI manager’s decisions as pitch count. This is also the case when you are a pitcher in My Player. Not only will the manager not let you overthrow your young arm, he will yank you from the game (regardless of what inning you’re in) if things are getting ugly out there. More on My Player in a Future Developer Insight.

Oh, and here is some leaked footage of what appears to be the demo of the game. It's not much, as it is shaky cam, and they keep cutting away for the interview. But at 3:05 you get a little glimpse of he new fielding, where you see the ball land within a larger circle, but not in the center. The better your fielder is, the small that larger circle is, and the more centralized the landing spot will be.

Jayhawker wrote:

Pretty cool trailer showing off the new fielding animations.

Good trailer, but something seems off in the animations to me.

I did like the choice in music. Took me back to ... uh, high school, I believe.

Looks good. I wonder how this year's multiplayer will be...

Okay, who's up for a 2K11 league? Dibs on the Yankees...

SwampYankee wrote:

Looks good. I wonder how this year's multiplayer will be...

If you watch that video with the interview, the 2K guy claims that they did some work to specifically make it easier to not only read balls and strikes, but curves vs. fastballs. We'll see how well it really works. If this thing has great multiplayer, I might end up divorced.

And I call Cards.

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