Sony has cornered the baseball market as of late and for good reason due to their consistent commitment to fantastic baseball titles year after year. MLB 10 the show for the PSP has its heart set on continuing the success of the console version by bringing the same exceptional baseball experience to the handheld market. Do they succeed in this goal? Or is it another story where ambitions outweigh execution? Read our full review to find out
I don’t know what it is but I still find myself in a place where I cannot believe traditional sports games have any chance of being good on the handheld systems. I still think that handhelds are for RPGs and puzzle games, but just like I was proven wrong with Little Big Planet on the PSP, I again must eat my words for MLB 10. Not only is it the best baseball title on a handheld so far, it is just as fully featured as the console version, which is no small feat.
Almost everything from the console version of the game is included and fully featured in the handheld version, which was a very welcome surprise. Initially I thought the game was going to be much more bare bones and featureless, but thankfully I was incorrect. From a features standpoint, almost nothing is missing from this game other than online play, which was disappointing but in the grand scheme of things understandable. Even the fan favorite Road to the Show mode is included so players will likely drop hours upon hours into building their own pro and controlling them through the minors and majors just like on the PS3.
Not only is the game full featured, but the gameplay is smooth, fast, and solid with no hiccups or lag to speak of at all. The controls are well designed, and it’s relatively easy to control your players with the minor exception of the analog stick which sometimes makes aiming a bit difficult. It’s hard to ask for more in a handheld game when it comes to gameplay and it’s safe to say they really nailed it this year.
Another welcome surprise was the graphics because for the most part they look fantastic. The stadiums are fully formed and player models look fantastic. There are tons of broadcast presentations that make you really feel like you are watching a game on TV, or at least as close as the graphical power of the PSP can bring you to that goal. The only real problem I had with the visuals were the awful looking crowd, but most games do that even on consoles so it’s really hard to fault the developers for not fully forming a crowd, although it would be nice eventually.
The players themselves look really good for a handheld game and they feature some really fluid animation that helps separate the visuals from the pack.
The inclusion of color commentary and custom soundtracks is also a really great feature that I found myself really enjoying because these features add a lot to making the game feel more polished. Nothing is better than being able to listen to your own music in menus and they thankfully include this vital feature. The sound quality is good for the PSP and it is good to see these kinds of features being offered in handheld games because they are very enjoyable.
If you happen to enjoy the console version then you will be right at home with the PSP version because there are little to no changes between the two when it comes to control or with the amount of fun I had. I found myself really enjoying the fact that I was able to play Road to the Show in little bits and pieces when I was on the go instead of having to wait to go home to play. If you are a gamer who enjoys baseball then it is very likely you will have a great time with MLB 10: The Show for the PSP.
MLB 10: The Show really surprised me in the way that it featured a very solid baseball title for the PSP. I originally didn’t think this was possible, but now I am convinced and excited to see what they have in store for us next year because I have a feeling it will be quite good. If you are a baseball fan or just a fan of great games then you should definitely consider picking up this title for your PSP.