Manager games are well suited to portable devices when you are on the go. Previously I have tried most titles concerning management of soccer teams. Now the well established OOTP Baseball franchise has moved onto iOS with the almost compulsory i added.
What you get is the deepest baseball management simulation crammed into a nifty portable shape. I am new to the game, and so far I don’t want for any features that the computer version might have. For old-time fans of the franchise some aspects might feel watered down. No matter if you are new or an avid fan the game captures the strategic aspect of baseball. To me this is great, as baseball is a small sport in Europe. I get to play around with tactics, roosters and trades and I see that it affects the results. This can be done without that much knowledge of the game, stats and tactics due to a lot of graphs showing skill and form of players.
There is virtually limitless gameplay in iOOTP Baseball 2011. You can play the 2011 season Major League, create a fictional league or replay classic scenarios. There are also a lot of scenarios available as in app purchases. Needless to say this is a long time investment, or at least until the next installments hits the App Store.
Managing the team is really fun, but it takes a special type of player to enjoy it. The presentation is sparse, and the payoff is shown in numbers instead of dazzling stars or replays. Games are only shown as lines of plays in a play by play broadcast. You can choose to quickplay the game, but that means you miss out on making important decisions. The field is shown between batters, and you can see trends and tendencies. This is the information you then use to change the lineup, or other tactical decisions.
The presentation lacks flair, and to those used to Football Manager or other soccer simulations iOOTP looks stale. This is perhaps the biggest problem in attracting new customers to the franchise. Loading, and simulation times are ok, but just barely. I think the game should move quicker on an iPhone 4 than it does. I know there are loads of information to simulate, but then at least give me some stimulating information to watch while the game thinks.
There is no music, and no sound effects in the game. At least the game is mute to me, and I find no settings for sound. You are free to play your own music at least.
iOOTP Baseball 2011 is a deep simulation with a lot of gamelife. The basic presentation, and lack of sound hurts the overall impression. You can’t go wrong with it though if you are a fan of baseball, and simulation games.
iOOTP Baseball 2011 $4.99
Seller: Out of the Park Developments GmbH & Co KG