MLB The Show 16 will be hitting stores tomorrow and gamers are eager to start hitting some home runs. Most of you will pick up the game, give Road to the Show a shot and immediately think you are Babe Ruth, only to realize that you are merely a rookie. Don’t you fret, there are a few things you can do to make your player a real stud. Before we get into that, let’s discuss the very beginning of Road to the Show mode.
Customizing and creating your player
In Road to the Show, you will create a baseball player and be able to choose which position you would like to play along with a multitude of other customizations. Those customizations include batting stance/pitching motion, bat and glove color, batting gloves, uniform modifications and plenty more. Don’t worry about choosing a specific region from where you are from. Whether it is East, West, Central or International, this decision will have no impact on your player and how he performs.
The most important thing you will do when creating your player is assigning stat points. When you first make a player, you will be assigned a certain amount of stat points. What you do with your stat points will determine what type of player you create. If you want to be fast then you put your points in speed. If you want to aim for a gold glove then you should work on arm strength and fielding. If you want to be a singles and line drive guy then work on contact. Home run hitters will pour the points into the power department.
Use your points wisely and try not to worry about not spreading them out enough. You are headed to the minors to work on your skills regardless of what you do so don’t worry about maxing out a certain attribute. Speaking of maxing out an attribute, you should max out Contact and Power simply because batting is how you get most of your points as long as you aren’t a pitcher.
Impressing the scouts
The next step after creating your player is taking part in Bowman scout day to determine your draft stock. At Bowman scout day, you will take part in fielding and hitting drills. How you perform in these drills will determine your scouting report, which you will see at the end. It is here where you will be introduced to the brand new Showtime feature. When fielding the ball, entering Showtime mode will slow down time, allowing for a better reaction to the situation at hand. When batting, you are allowed to use the Showtime feature one time and not on every pitch, or else this would be too easy.
Depending on how you do at Bowman scout day, you will then be given a draft projection. You will be able to play two more games against other draft hopefuls from around the world that will either help or hurt your draft stock depending on how you perform. You will then be drafted, and just like that, you are playing baseball for the minor league affiliate of a Major League squad. Time to progress through the ranks and prove that you belong in The Show.
Tips and tricks for racking up stat points
Your player will start off with an overall of about 65 or less. While you are sure to play like a 65 overall minor leaguer, there are some things you can do in the settings to increase your chances of performing well. The better you play in your games, the more points you will receive to increase your stats.
My first suggestion for helping you perform better is a simple new feature that is making its debut in MLB The Show 16: the perks system. Perks are available when you enter the training and perks menu from the Road to the Show home screen. In order to use perks, you must be a certain overall in a certain attribute. So the perk that allows you to slow down pitches may require a 75 overall plate vision attribute in order to use it. While you may not be able to use some of the better perks right away, there are still perks you can use relatively early on that will help you on your journey to the majors. Long story short, use the perks. They can help you pitch better, field better and hit better, so why wouldn’t you?
The next suggestion relates to when you are batting. You will most likely use the camera angle that puts you in the catchers POV. You will notice your strike zone, at least for the first pitch, and then it may disappear, but you can modify that so it stays throughout the at-bat. Here is the hint, turn on and use the reticle. By reticle, I mean a little oval shaped outline that will act as your hit box. Putting the ball right in the middle of this reticle will result in better contact and better chances at getting a hit. It may take some getting used to, but it makes hitting much easier. There are plenty of other options that will change the way you hit, such as the timing preference, but this is the easiest feature to adjust to. This reticle makes hitting much simpler.
The final suggestion may come as a surprise to some veterans of the game and might even be disagreed with. The trick is to turn off guess pitch. The guess pitch feature allows you to guess the type of pitch and where it will be in the strike zone. If you guess correctly, then you will have a better chance to hit the ball. However, guess incorrectly and you will be penalized and put at a disadvantage. Being a long time fan of the franchise, I can assure you that you are better off turning guess pitch off entirely. The risk is not worth the reward here, and you will be at peace knowing that you are not putting yourself in a hole before even seeing a pitch.
Carry Over Saves
As was the case with last year’s edition of The Show, there will be carry over saves for the Road to the show mode. This means you can continue your players’ career from where you left off in the previous installment. Assuming you can still use the perks system, this will offer a nice reward for players who put in the time and effort from last years installment.
Creating a Pitcher
“I don’t like pitches up and in, especially fastballs” – every hitter ever
Didn’t want to leave out something for those who wish to bring the heat, so here is my only piece of advice. As a pitcher in MLB The Show 16 (or any MLB The Show game for that matter), your strikeout pitch should always be a fastball up and in. Trust me when I say that this pitch just works. It also works best if you use the 4 seam fastball option, so make sure that is one of your first three pitches. I know some of you may want some movement and opt for the cut-fastball, but the 4 seamer works best. Up and in and you always win. Watch the strikeouts pile up, and as long as you continue to work on your accuracy and pitch power, this pitch will remain your bread and butter.
From Rookie to Veteran to Hall of Famer
MLB The Show 16 offers baseball fans the chance to become the player they have always wished they could be. It is a game that can exhilarate with the best of the sports games and is certainly worth the time of baseball fans who also play video games. However, it only releases on PS4, so sorry about that Xbox owners.
While on your journey to Cooperstown, make sure you remember the three suggestions that will help along the way. Make sure to:
- Use the perks system
- Turn off guess pitch
- Turn on the reticle feature for hitting
By doing all of that, you will ensure success and start performing like an all-star. MLB The Show 16 releases for PS4 and PS3 tomorrow. Play ball!