MLB 07: The Show
features nearly all of the play modes found in the PS2 version. In addition to standards like Quick Play, Season, Franchise and Online multiplayer, MLB 07
also features a Manager Mode and a really cool Career Mode.
Franchise Mode gives you control over every aspect of a team. Not only are you responsible for management decisions like roster changes, pitching line-up and player contracts, but you'll also have to negotiate TV deals, arrange promotions and set prices for merchandise and food. On top of that, you will have to stick to a budget and meet fan expectations and team goals. If this all sounds overwhelming, well... it is. On the plus side, you can delegate responsibilities like a true manager, so if there's something you don't want to deal with, you can let the A.I. handle it and focus on other aspects.
The main attraction in MLB 07 is its Career Mode, The Show. Here you create a player and try to earn a spot on a team. Although you still take part in games, the catch is that you only play when your created character is on the field. If you are a pitcher, you can only pitch when the manager decides to put you on the mound. The same goes for other positions as well. After doing your thing on the field, the game goes on until your next turn.
In Career Mode, you don't just play your position; instead you try and meet a series of assigned goals. These include striking out players, making a double play or any number of other things. You also have goals for your at bats like batting a runner in or just getting a hit. As you complete goals, you earn points that you can then spend on training your player. Which stats you choose to improve depend on your position. Reaching goals also raises your stock as a player. The better you do, the more difficult your goals become. Eventually you'll get the attention of a team and earn a contract offer from a team.
Career Mode is different from what you would usually expect in a baseball game, but the change is welcome. It took a while to really get into the mode, but once I changed my mindset, I was able to get a contract. And, while Rick Vaughn Jr. didn't have quite the impact as his old man, he still had a pretty good career.
Oddly enough, one of Career Mode's bigger problems is the camera. It always focuses on your player, or at least it tries to. Sometimes it is successful and gives you a great view; other times it finds the most awkward position and forces you to make the best of a bad angle.
MLB 07's online experience is great. After creating your profile, you can play in either Ranked or Unranked games as well as create leagues, share settings or even check out news from around the league. Games generally run smoothly, though lag will rear its ugly head every few games.