A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this is a massively multiplayer online game (MMO) in which you play and manage baseball teams. The content in the game itself is acceptable for any child old enough to read and understand the rules of baseball, but this is an online game, so there's potential profanity and adult commentary through the chat function. Because of this online chat aspect, we have set the age appropriateness at 12 and older. This is a review of the game while it is currently in Beta, so don't expect the game to be smooth sailing -- it isn't yet.
What's it about?
MLB DUGOUT HEROES is a free-to-play online game with all the players and teams in Major League Baseball, and that's exciting news for baseball fans. The online, multiplayer universe concept lends itself perfectly to the game of baseball, where stats, trades, tournaments, and series' play invite team effort and competition. And this game does a good job of combining arcade-like gameplay and a friendly graphic style with the sometimes obsessive resource management that strategy and role-playing games are known for.
On the field, players control pitching, batting, baserunning, and throwing the ball once the fielder picks it up. To swing the bat, you simply click the left mouse button; to pitch, left click to stop a moving power meter bar. By playing a few games, your team and players will \"level up,\" growing in skill. You'll also earn \"Nuts,\" the game's currency, which will let you purchase player and team upgrades. These off-the-field elements of the game are as engaging as the head-to-head competitions, and add a necessary dimension of play.
Is it any good?
MLB Dugout Heroes is currently in Beta, so don't expect smooth, glitch-free play. For instance, it may appear your fielder caught a fly ball only to have it ruled a hit. What's more, social play (in which players chat in real time) is nearly impossible as the game doesn't allow players to pause and talk. Lastly, the graphics are a little outdated. These may seem like serious gripes, but very likely the bugs will be worked out soon (and players might be charged a subscription fee). The big win here is that MLB licensed teams and players are in effect, and the play is fun and easy to jump into.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the variety of elements that influence your team's performance: substitutions, weather, equipment, batting order, and lots of other factors that you control. The shuffling of resources and nitty, gritty management of the team is really the most fun part of the game and the particulars merit discussion and analysis, especially for the baseball stats fanatics.
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.