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MLB The Show 22 - Review


Contrary to what one might believe, keeping a franchise relevant through annual installments is not as easy as it seems. As well as having to find a way to reinvigorate the series with new additions, it's also important to stay true to the series in order to retain the already installed user base. Sony PlayStation's San Diego Studio has managed to balance these two elements almost perfectly,

Once you launch MLB The Show 22 for the first time, you will be greeted with an intuitive menu and settings that will allow you to customize the gaming experience to suit you. You will be able to adjust a lot of adjustments individually, from the way you hit, to the way you throw each shot. The truth is that I was surprised to see all these accessibility options and how well they work, particularly with new players.

In fact, I'll tell you once and for all that this game does a great job of introducing you to each of its mechanics, so new players will have a fairly smooth introductory experience without too much hassle. Of course, there are also options to disable all of these aids, to the point of making the interface completely invisible, something veterans of the franchise might want to try. Regardless of your preferred playstyle, MLB The Show 22 won't penalize you in any way, so feel comfortable playing however you feel like it.

One of the main game modes is the famous Road to the Show, where you must create your own player, start in the minor leagues, and work your way up to the big leagues. Your player will start out with an average level, and it's up to you to level them up each game. You will have to choose between pitcher or batter, and you will only be able to take control of your player in this mode, so think very carefully about what you want your position to be.

Additionally, MLB The Show 22 now features a much more extensive customization system that goes beyond cosmetics. Depending on whether you're a batter or a pitcher, you'll be able to choose different perks for your character that increase your stats like speed, accuracy, stamina, and more. These perks are divided into categories of bronze, silver, and gold, obviously the latter being the best of the three and the one that offers the most benefits. You'll be able to unlock more perks by leveling up and through card packs, but I'll tell you about the latter later.

The rest of the main modes consist of Diamond Dynasty, which we could think of as the FUT equivalent of FIFA, March to October, where you play as an existing team from March to October, completing certain challenges and reaching certain milestones along the way. , and finally Franchise Mode, where you will become the manager of a baseball team.

Obviously we also have other traditional game modes like the classic exhibition matches, Retro mode, Legends mode, and so on. When it comes to new additions we have the online co-op mode, which will allow you to play 2v2, 3v3 and even Diamond Dynasty matches.

There are essentially two ways to play MLB The Show 22: as a hitter and as a pitcher. Playing as a hitter your goal will obviously be to hit the ball and try to hit home runs, but there's also this other mechanic where you have to move your player around fourth base. This last process can also be automated, if you prefer. There are several options on how to hit, and each one will give you different results. This mechanic can be as simple or as complex as you want, since you could assign each type of hit to a button on the control, or even assign them to certain movements of the joystick.

While when you throw, you will also have to choose a type of throw that you can also assign to any of the buttons on the control. In case your opponent hits the ball, then you will automatically change it to a fielder, where your objective will now be to catch the ball and pass it between the different fielders to disqualify the rival. Yes, this process can also be automated.

For Diamond Dynasty mode it is now much easier to get cards of any type thanks to its intuitive tutorial and progression. Initially, your objective will be to acquire the famous Face of the Franchise cards, and to achieve this, you just have to play any of the modes that the title has for you. Obviously, this allows collectors to have fun while collecting these cards at the same time, something every game should do.

One of the novelties for this mode is known as Mini Seasons, a series of offline matches where your Diamond Dynasty roster will have to face off against others previously generated by members of the community. In other words, they are offline matches against teams of real players that play an important role in collecting because the rewards they offer are usually much better.

I think that MLB games have always stood out for their incredible graphics and MLB The Show 22 is obviously no exception. Despite being a title that still reaches the last generation of consoles, it is clear that Sony San Diego paid important attention to the new generation, because now we have an audiovisual section that is really worthy of the PS5 and Series X|S. Not only do the character models look better, but the attention to detail on every conceivable element has also been vastly improved.

On next-gen consoles, MLB The Show 22 runs at native 4K resolution and 60FPS, without the ability to modify these display options. Fortunately, the game runs without any problems, and it seems that bugs and glitches are a thing of the past for the franchise. Yes, from time to time I saw some strange animation, the same case with the facial expressions of certain players and the behavior of the audience, but it is not really anything serious that breaks the experience or anything like that.

In the case of the PlayStation 5, MLB The Show 22 also makes use of DualSense, and I think it was significantly improved here as well. While in MLB The Show 21 the functions of this control felt implemented a bit crudely, with this year's installment they have been refined quite a bit and now you will feel different types of vibrations depending on your actions. For example, the intensity with which you hit the ball will also determine the intensity of the vibration, the same case when you are playing as a pitcher or outfielder. There are also more subtle uses of vibration in menus and in the interface. The theme of adaptive triggers wasn't really tapped into here, as there isn't much you can do with them.

Of course, the controls also feel responsive and precise in the hands, and regardless of which settings you use, I can assure you that you won't have any problems with any of them. As I mentioned at the beginning of the review, the extensive accessibility options that this game has are truly impressive and it shows how much Sony San Diego thought not only of new players, but also of veterans of the franchise.

With stunning graphics, sensational controls and a diverse catalog of game modes, MLB The Show 22 is another strong installment in this saga that Sony San Diego has been perfecting little by little for years. There is still a long way to go, but with each new release you can feel how the franchise is evolving, even if these advances are not that significant.

Fans of the sport will find great value with everything this game has to offer, but what about new players? Well, as I already mentioned, the wide accessibility options allow anyone, even without much knowledge about baseball, to enter it without too many problems, but veterans have not been forgotten either and they will also find their own settings to customize the gaming experience as you see fit.


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