Version Reviewed: 1.0.0
Device Reviewed On: iPad 2
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I fear I may have underrated last year's version of iOOTP, the baseball simulation game. I played it non-stop for weeks on end. It became an obsession, something that I played instead of other games I should have been reviewing, until I eventually had to put it down for my own good. That I didn't mention it in an end-of-year list can only be attributed to the fact that I had worked so hard to wean myself of the addiction. This was after simulating literally hundreds of games.
Well, the new season is upon us, and with it comes iOOTP 2012. If it ain't broke, don't fix it, and Out of the Park Developments have largely not messed with the winning formula of the original game. Many of the changes come from features that are gameplay tweaks and behind-the-scenes adjustments. The game is universal now, as iPad support was added to last year's version during midseason. Think that simulating one plate appearance at a time is just not deep enough? Well, the game now supports simulating pitch by pitch, perfect for those control freaks.
Cloud saving is not implemented, and given the file size of save data, this may be a bad idea because even tiny file sizes have had issues with iCloud. It'd still be something nice to see in some form, but save games are portable this time around with iTunes file sharing. Other tweaks to accuracy have been added, such as player award histories, accurate schedules for historical seasons, and tweaked AI for roster management and trading. The rosters are not accurate to Opening Day rosters yet, and I noticed at least one missing player, but the developers claim an update adding in accurate Opening Day rosters will be submitted. As well, some top prospects for each team have been added.
The game is really not much different than it was last year, though. It's still a baseball simulation game, there's no real on-the-field action, though that's not the point. This is meant for the player who thrives for the strategy of the sport and to control what's going on, not to swing the bat or throw the pitches themselves. The interface is largely the same as well, just with some minor tweaks, and little things like the background image always being one of Citizens Bank Park and the weather being just a random number, hardly appropriate for the climate (if it was ever 60 degrees in May in Arlington, TX, then there's a good chance a new Ice Age had begun) are still unchanged.
This is a game for baseball freaks first and foremost, and those freaks who loved iOOTP 2011 who want 2012 players and tweaked gameplay will want to snatch this one up right away.