This updated chapter of baseball is a true home run of enhanced gameplay, improved modes, and extras that will thrill baseball fans and bring newcomers to the digital ballpark. MLB The Show 19 has clearly spent time in the training room, because this is the best presentation of the pastime in years. For one thing, more attention has been paid to the defensive side of the game, so players will really have to time their swings to drive a ball into a gap or past the infielders. You'll see outfielders making more subtle adjustments before a pitch to react to sluggers so they can rob hits going over the fence or reaching the wall. So knocks that would've gone for extra bases in last year's game aren't so easy to make now. Improved visuals and the addition of MLB Network's Heidi Watney to the announcing team as a dugout reporter round out the presentation of the on-field game. Similarly, the Road to the Show mode has been vastly revamped, with larger role-playing game mechanics. This time around, players will pick their archetype (like a Flamethrower for a pitcher that tosses fastballs, or The Anomaly for power hitting speedsters) and can express themselves with personality traits. These have a larger impact this year: Not only can you boost the stats of yourself and your teammates, you can even start rivalries with other teams, which will make athletes play harder when they face each other. You'll also get dynamic challenges during at bats, like driving in runs or advancing runners, which boost your stats. Honestly, the mode just feels brand new.
That would be plenty, but two other modes are also noteworthy. The March to October mode accelerates play for a season, leaping into key moments during games, like trying to mount a comeback from a certain number of runs. Managing to successfully accomplish these goals contributes to a momentum meter, allowing your squad to go on a hot winning streak. Lose these challenges, and your squad goes on a cold losing slide. It's a great way to fly through seasons and test your skills. Finally, the addition of MLB Moments is a fun way to explore historical moments in MLB history. Players are tasked with meeting or surpassing moments in history, such as hitting a number of home runs with Babe Ruth over a four-game series or actually getting Tom Seaver the perfect game that slipped through his fingers in 1969. Sony plans on adding more historical moments along with events from the current season for players to test their skills. Simply put, MLB The Show 19 overflows with gameplay and modes that sports fans and baseball fans will love. It's worth a PlayStation owner's time to head out to this digital ballgame.