What to Expect from MLB 2K13

Posted January 11th, 2013 at 11:30 am

The announcement of MLB 2K13 made earlier this week caught everyone off guard and for good reason. The third party league license that had been signed in 2005 expired and Take Two (parent company of 2K Sports) had long expressed their disdain for the deal which the leadership inherited as they lost over $30 million every year. At the same time they made clear their intention to turn towards projects which were based on owned IP rather than licensed properties. A deal with MLB was not immediately renewed and a period where the series had been internally cancelled stretched on for months. 

At some point since then – and from what I’ve been told that happened in late fall of 2012 – MLB came to their senses and agreed to a deal with Take Two that presented much more favorable terms making the project a viable one. 2K Sports already had the series in place where upgrades could be made in a short turnaround period allowing for an MLB game to release on the Xbox 360 on time. It was the only way the league could have representation on the system. The licensing deal is for this year alone and MLB will reevaluate options going forward.

Had a deal been reached with another company then it would have been spring of 2014 as the earliest a game could have been ready leaving the market leading platform absent the presence of MLB. The focus for said company would also have to be on the next generation of systems even though the product would be expected out on the 360 and PS3 as well. That is a major project for any company to take on and time is tight to even achieve that unless the MLB 2K series somehow survives this one year reprieve and marches on.

Expectations for MLB 2K13 will be understandably low and even Kotaku has now laid the groundwork for that. Last year 2K appeared to be putting the series out to pasture with MLB 2K12. The game’s big new mode was MLB Today Seasons which never actually worked properly, MLB Today as a whole lost support before the season was over, and there were so few enhancements that the soundtrack was cited as being one of the five primary features. 2K even stated the main focus had been to refine the game with authenticity rather than spend time building new features and they failed to even clear that low bar. The $1 Million Perfect Game Challenge was mired by a cheating controversy and there was only a single patch released and even that took three months to arrive.

The arrival of the initial features list has done nothing to alter the negative perceptions about the title’s potential and may have even solidified them. The move of the Astros to the NL West and year-long interleague scheduling are obviously going to have to be reflected in the product. Beyond that though, if there isn’t going to be much in the way of additions and improvements, justifying the $60 will be difficult. They didn’t really even try to do that last year so it would figure to be a similar approach here as well.

2K Sports didn’t anticipate they would be in this position and it showed with how they treated MLB 2K12 and further eroded any support base they had remaining. That was followed by the series being buried only to unexpectedly get one more shot when the MLB came to the realization that they needed to fill the temporary void on the 360. With a constrained development cycle and little reason for the company to invest in the product given its uncertain-at-best future it would be wise to temper hopes that MLB 2K13 will be any different.

  • smsixx

    It didn’t catch me off guard at all.

    Go back to any of the old threads from last year and you will see that Keith and I were making the argument that if you did any google search for “MLB2k series being cancelled” the ONLY results you got were to this site. You claim that your “sources” all said the same story…But lets face facts…IT WAS ALL SPECULATION because the license was up. We told you and about 50 other users that there was nothing offical from the company itself, and until there was be ready for the game to release…Our reward??? Being called “morons” and “2k fanboys” even though we both play MLB The Show.
    Look whos laughing now? 🙂

    • Why are you laughing? Who cares…

    • Keith.

      Exactly. Well said.

    • AcCte

      Are you psychic? So you somehow knew that the canceled series would eventually come back and start being worked on in November. Something 2k and MLB didnt know. Right lol…

      • smsixx

        It dosen’t take a psychic to have common sense.

    • Keith.

      And speaking of the Show, it looks like McCutchen is going to win the cover (voting ends later this afternoon). That’s pretty cool for long-suffering Pirate fans.

    • Amen_Ra

      This is actually a true comment. Anyone thumbing his down is hating.

      On another note: Pasta why do comments take 2 hours to show up? I know you are moderating now, but some of this stuff is basic

      • Sometimes its within minutes, sometimes not and periods will stretch on long…I do sleep or have to be away from access at times!

        • Amen_Ra

          Ok, my bad. I didn’t know you were the one actually moderating

    • Just a guy

      Ummmm who cares. Nobody cares what anyone says on the comments on Pasta’s website anyway. 99% of the time it’s just people bitching about getting had by big companies and calling devs lazy.

  • arrt

    this is going to be a roster update of a terrible game. anyone who pays 60 bucks for it deserves what theyll be getting

    • Riley

      12 wasn’t terrible. It simply wasn’t anything great. I would agree with you that it is a fancy roster update.

    • I’m not just paying $60 bucks, I’m paying $79.99 for the combo pack. Mlb 2k for life. 2k12 was great.

  • trimd

    Canceled game gets resurrected just so there is a game for a year. Man this is going to be SO BAD

  • clubguru

    There probably won’t be much new to this years mlb2k13 but that’s been the case with MLB THE SHOW for the last 3yrs. i havent seen much improvement in there game and it’s boring to say the least(IMO).I can honestly say at least i have fun playing mlb2k12.

  • HustlinOwl

    Wake up people take a stance, I stopped purchasing EA Sports titles after the NCAA Basketball debacle not support and a dead game.

  • Greg

    Anyone that buys this game should check into a mental institution.

  • clubsteve

    so this was a power play by 2k with mlb all along?….they forced their hand for a better deal on the license?

    • They had walked away. Not even really a power play cause they didn’t want anything to do with it anymore. But MLB needed them to fill the void for this year and made them an offer that made sense for 2K to roll out a new version even though it’ll be compromised by lack of time.

      • clubsteve

        they walked away….mlb needed them……hmmmm. either way i’m happy we have a new title this year, but skeptical whether or not it will be just a roster update with 2k13 on the cover.

      • The real question is why EA didn’t have a baseball game ready to roll out in advance of the expired license.

    • 2K obviously doesn’t have an exclusive license. MLB is probably paying them to make a game rather than the other way around.

  • Mike

    What to expect ? Inaccurate shades of team colors, game crippling glitches, sub par gameplay, and funny faces all for $60.

  • MoneyMayweather

    game is fine.

  • Daniel Kinkaid

    Welcome to the exclusive era, MLB!

  • clubsteve

    if mlb 2k13 had the world baseball classic mode (like 2k6), then that would be a great addition, especially with the world baseball classic starting right when the game comes out…..

  • yoyoyo

    Im skipping 2k13 and maybe 2k14 because they make such little updates

  • Ronny i

    there still isnt any word that 2k and the new features.. i dont believe that 2k is going to rush and try to put out the game and add a new mode or any advancments to it.. so just exspect roster updates and maybe a fix on mlb today

  • mac

    There is only one baseball game the show. If any one picks 2k over the show they dont own a playstation, are brain dead, or suck at the show and revert to arcade baseball. Jus sayn

  • Ciara Pickhardt

    Anyone else realiz they sold us $65 patch? that they literally did nothing but update the rosters, music, & take away League Play? They have no numbers listed to call & complain only email, There will be a class action lawsuit, their reasonings are FUNNY! Blow them up lets get a class action lawsuit going and get our $65 back for a SHITTTTY GAME! 2K Sports Tech Support #1-866-219-9839