Like most baseball titles these days, MLB '06: The Show
uses the standard setup of the behind-the-batter view for hitting, and the camera switching to a three-quarter view when fielding. There are multiple game modes in MLB '06: The Show
, including Exhibition games, Season games, and Franchise games. A new mode to the series is called Rivalries. Rivalries is the perfect setup for tracking your records if you and a buddy tend to play a lot of games together. Youíll be able to set up Rivalries to track many different numbers of games, from a modest 7, to as high as 162!
Another new mode is called King of the Diamond. This is a three-inning slug-fest, where itís you against the computer in a ladder-match style competition. Here, youíll have two minutes to score as many runs as possible in a basic field that contains only dummies to play defense. The time is relative though, because if you hit certain targets, youíll add to your overall time (while other targets may take time away from you). Youíll also be able to set up challenges, in which you can either clear the bases of runners or steal time away from the batters while youíre controlling the pitcher. King of the Diamond is actually a fun and addictive way to play baseball, while offering a pretty good challenge at the same time, because the hitting gets more and more difficult as the tournament wears on.
Of course, every baseball game released has its own style, batting, and fielding system. As someone who has played quite a few videogame baseball titles, I can say that I truly had mixed feelings about the batting system. When at the plate, the batting system can be quite frustrating at times. On the other hand, it allows for a naturally difficult feel at the same time. With the advanced batting setup, youíll have to aim your swings into one of the nine spots in the strike zone, while also trying to refrain from swinging at the bad pitches. This is a great way to help simulate the difficulty in hitting Major League pitchers, but also has a huge learning curve if youíre not used to that sort of thing. What I really liked, however, is the incorporation of being able to "read" the pitcher. If you guess the pitch or the zone that it will arrive, youíll get an on-screen hint at exactly where the pitch will be, giving you a great chance at making a nice attempt on the ball. Home runs are then quite possible (and in fact, can happen too often in some cases).