New Baseball Emulator
I have been coming here for a while and it's the best source for vintage ballpark info and general baseball talk. I thought I should join so that I could show the community the computer game I have been developing. It's not a simulator, in fact it has no data base yet at all. It is just a game engine as of now but I would love to hear some feedback from all the knowledgeable folk here, and maybe use this forum as a way to continue to develop it. I just recently added two, I think you will find, very familiar ballparks. You will need flash installed to play. Please give it a spin and any comments (good or bad) are welcome. Also if there is something that I can do to support this forum, let me know.
Neat game, Jeff. However, I looked at your video that argues in favor of your game. I don't necessarily agree.
I'm guessing you used a 2K game as the comparison. I play MLB The Show. Like your game, there is pitch speed, movement, timing, depth, and individual batting traits.
--Speed: speed can be varied using a meter or the analog stick of the PS3 controller, depending on which mode you play.
--Movement: fastballs, sinkers, sliders, curves, knucklers, and everything else can be used according to what a pitcher uses in real life. These not only have to be placed, but players must anticipate how the pitch moves. For example, if you locate a curveball below the batter's knees, it is not going to land below his knees. Rather, you must anticipate the curveball's drop, meaning that particular pitch would end up in the dirt.
--Timing: everything depends on timing. Like your game, late swings result in opposite-field fouls, etc. Players use different pitches in their pitcher's repertoire to upset the batter's timing. It's great that you use actual times for the pitches, but this can be adjusted according to preference in most video games. The Show uses a slider called "pitch speed." When shifted to the right, pitches do not change in velocity, but the reaction needed required to hit them increases.
--Depth: I'm no physicist, but without any distinction between high and low pitches, I don't see how there can be much depth. MLB The Show uses high, low, in, out, and every combination of them. Considering that there are also generated figures, I'd say it's a bit more 3D than your numbered circles.
--Traits: I really like that your game uses individual traits. But other baseball games have much more intricate traits. There is speed, base running ability, bunting, and even differences for handedness. Some players are better or worse than others at contact/power against lefty or righty pitching. The Show also uses plate discipline and plate vision traits. The higher these are, the better a batter can discern between balls/strikes and hold up check swings.
Your game is great. I really enjoy it. I only rebut your arguments because I admire it so much and because I think it shares the necessary qualities for a great game. I just don't think it's superior.
Thanks for the reply. The mere fact you use The Show as a comparison is really flattering. I admit the physics reference in my video is a bit tongue in cheek, but I stand by my view, based on the limitation of 2d monitors. I hope you check in from time to time to check on my progress. I plan on adding other features as the development process continues. I really appreciate your comments.
Thanks again -
Jeff, perhaps you could add sliders/screwballs into the mix? That is, from the bird's eye view, pitches that break towards the left/right depending on pitcher handedness?
Also, do all pitches equally exhaust the pitcher?
I don't know how knowledgeable you are when it comes to players, but are you planning to create names in place of numbers? This way you can toy with the offensive stats of eye, power, and speed. If so, I extend my hand should you ever need any help (not that I'm some sort of wizened guru).
I will check back from time to time.
I have programmed a curveball. If the pitcher is righthanded it will drift toward lefties and away from righties - and vice-verse. To use it when pitching just release the button when location is set without clicking a second time. To see it while batting set the difficulty to "hard" in the options panel of the menu.
Pitches exhaust the pitcher equally regardless of the velocity. It would perhaps be more clever to subtract more from the tank for a faster pitch...hmmm. It would be easy to to. Generally, this game is programmed to be able to make changes easily. I try not to code myself into a box. This comes from dealing with fickle designers who can often change their minds in mid stream and ask "would it be easy to....."
Naming players brings up an interesting conundrum. It's certainly easy to program in but I thought of several problems. If I use real player and team names then I run the risk of stepping on MLB properties and if I let gamers fill in the blanks, so to speak, that also can run afoul of MLB potentially. Also, as I have found with other projects, people can not be trusted to play nice when giving the capability of naming things or uploading images. It's a Pandora's box pitfalls.
I developed this because I wanted a really cool baseball game to play myself. It has turned into quite a project and I am actively exploring commercial opportunities, and do have interest. The opinions I value the most come from folks who know baseball intimately, and though it is primarily a computer game, it's built on the knowledge the gamer brings to it of the greatest game in the world.