When it comes to sports and gaming, it seems like the sentiment is always the same among gamers: that we are paying $60… or even $70 for a roster update. One series has been able to avoid some of this criticism and that is San Diego Studio’s MLB The Show franchise. While this game does feature a similar microtransaction influenced mode like Madden Ultimate Team or NBA 2K’s MyTeam, MLB The Show’s Diamond Dynasty mode is often forgiven because of how generous the mode actually is. However, with this year’s title, it is clear that the dynamic is shifting a bit.
While the game does feature multiple gameplay improvements seen over hitting, pitching, and fielding, I would not blame you if you didn’t notice them. They are relatively minor updates but you can tell the game does feel better overall. Graphically, the game looks great. Not a huge improvement over last year, but as far as next generation baseball goes, it looks decent.
The game does make one major changeup (pun intended) and that is with the broadcast team. The voices of MLB The Show have been replaced with a new team featuring Boog Sciambi and Chris Singleton. Overall, the change is a welcome one and it will probably only get better with each future installment, however there are some audio glitches where they will say things out of context and line repetition is getting old.
If you recall with the newest version of Madden, the fans were outraged by the lack of support for Franchise mode and basically demanded that EA Sports do something, and it worked. I really wish the MLB The Show community would band together and demand something similar of San Diego Studios because once again, Franchise mode has been mostly neglected. Another fan favorite, Road to the Show, has also seen very few improvements. Instead, it seems like most of the innovation and development went into Diamond Dynasty, which I’m sure is their big money maker.
This year’s Diamond Dynasty shakes things up. The fan favorite Team Affinity is gone. The Innings Programs are gone. The daily moments programs are gone. Instead, everything is wrapped up into one Featured Program. The programs cycle in and out over a specific period of time but one could be 7 weeks, the next could be 3 weeks. There is no rhyme or reason for it. At first glance, this move appears to cut back on the amount of free cards the players can earn. The mode continues to be grindy but the rewards, if you’re into that sort of thing, seems to be worth it.
Overall, this does feel like a roster update with minor improvements. Perhaps the looming MLB Lockout played a part, perhaps COVID played a part, perhaps they’re running out of new ideas for a video game about 150 year old sport. Regardless, the game is good, but you played MLB The Show 21 and can do without the newest entry, you would probably be okay.
MLB The Show 22 Review
San Diego Studios takes another swing at MLB The Show
Overall, the game is good, but lack of attention to Franchise and Road to the Show modes make this feel like an expensive roster update.
- Gameplay feels solid.
- Graphics looks great on next-gen consoles.
- Diamond Dynasty continues to prove you can have modes like this and not be scummy about it.
- Minimal updates overall.
- Franchise and Road to the Show ignored.