For the third straight year consumers will have the option of buying a combo pack featuring MLB and NBA games. Sony announced today that PS3 versions of MLB 14: The Show and NBA 2K14 are being bundled for $90 to release on April 1.
Last year 2K Sports offered a MLB 2K13/NBA 2K13 bundle for $80. The year prior it was MLB 2K12/NBA 2K12 for $70. The cheaper prices with those deals were meant to entice consumers who had an interest in NBA 2K to buy the far less desirable MLB 2K along with it. The combos represented good value by artificially reducing the price of MLB 2K without simply dropping the price which was prohibited in the licensing deal.
The value of this latest combo is not as a strong but features a far better baseball game. NBA 2K14 on PS3 can be bought new for $40 or for cheaper if buying a used copy meaning at most the deal saves $10 and that probably isn’t enough to get someone who has passed on 2K14 for six months to jump on this pairing. In order to add another selling point $10 worth of in-game currency is being included with $5 of The Show’s “Stubs” and $5 of 2K14′s “Virtual Currency”.
There has still been no comment from SCEA regarding a PS3 and Vita combo deal (available for MLB 12 and MLB 13 for $80) or a “trade-up” promotion for those interested in buying the PS3 version before moving on to the PS4.
The LineÂ DriveÂ is a weekly collection of news, links, deal alerts, and updates that didnâ€™t necessarily warrant their own postings.
â™¦The PlayStation 4, which is still not readily available, is currently in stock at Amazon.
â™¦The recent Press Row Hangout recapping the first two PRP Madden NFL 25 Online Franchise seasons can now be downloaded in MP3 form.
â™¦Join the PP March Madness Tournament Challenge – winner gets $20 Amazon GC.
â™¦Some features the NFL has forced EA to remove from Madden are discussed at SI.
â™¦Check out the latest fighter screenshots for EA Sports UFC in the FB album.
â™¦New developer blog goes over response to the closed beta for The Golf Club.
â™¦New tutorial video demonstrates how to deepen bunkers in The Golf Club.
â™¦New tutorial video demonstrates how to create a lake in The Golf Club.
â™¦Check out the latest wildlife screenshots for The Golf Club in the FB album.
â™¦New developer blog discusses the face scanning being done for NBA Live 15.
â™¦New developer blog lays out Diamond Dynasty enhancements in MLB 14: The Show.
â™¦Special Press Row Podcast talks with the creative director of 2014 FIFA World Cup.
â™¦The FIFA 14 patch that went out to the PS4 in February has gone live on Xbox One.
â™¦Earn extra “pucks” by completing new NBC Matchups in NHL 14.
â™¦The Jaguars are installing the world’s biggestÂ HD LED video displays at EverBank Field.
â™¦Check out the uniforms for the new Los Angeles Kiss team in the Arena Football League.
â™¦Blu-ray/DVD releases this week are headlined by Frozen and American Hustle.
by Brendan Wilhide
In the freemium iOS game NBA Rush, you control an NBA star and fight back against an alien invasion using dunks, crossovers and sprints. This arcade game is short on story but long on the â€śjust one more turnâ€ť feeling and thatâ€™s a good thing for casual fans looking to kill a few minutes.
The game itself is slight variation on the runner genre–you control a player as they run through the environment, dodging obstacles, collecting coins for points and taking out aliens along the way. The controls are simple: tap left to go left, tap right to go right, etc. You can also jump over or slide under obstacles.Â Read more
With both MLB 14: The Show and RBI Baseball 14 making reduced time to complete games a selling point this year a poll was posted earlier in the week to gauge how important that is to consumers interested in baseball. Â The final tally after collecting votes from over 3K respondents shook out with a near even split which essentially means it is important but the perfect solution either doesn’t (and can never) exist or hasn’t materialized yet.
In total 53% feel that it’s important to speed up the games while 47% do not.Â Options are important and The Show is offering two of them in Quick Counts and Player Lock but in the end they also severely limit the experience. Comments made regarding the topic varied from those who require a shorter experience to others who feel that doing so compromises the integrity of the sport and its sim gaming representation.Â Obviously with over half of voters believing this to be a critical issue – and baseball games failing to reach a more mainstream audience – developers have no choice but to attempt and address it in various creative ways.
A total of 45% plan to try Quick Counts and/or Player Lock. 55% do not – with a significant portion of that group desiring shorter games but not interested in the new options.
When SCEA revealed the April 1 release date for MLB 14: The Show on PS3 and Vita the company only stated that the PlayStation 4 version would arrive on an unspecified date in May. Now that date is known: Tuesday, May 6.
The early May release is great news for those eagerly anticipating the game. However it will also amplify the necessity of a “trade-up” deal if SCEA hopes for consumers with both consoles to buy first on PS3 before moving on to the PS4. Five weeks between the two will not be enough time for even the most hardcore fans to justify buying the game twice unless a special offer is in place.Â Based on the earlier poll results a significant majority of consumers are planning to pass on the PS3 version altogether and wait for the PS4.
So far there has been no indication that there will be a deal offered – and the time to advertise it should there be one is quickly slipping away – but in the past the PS3/Vita combo deals have also popped up at retailers like Amazon with only a few days to spare.
EA Sports is facing multiple challenges by not releasing 2014 FIFA World Cup on the Xbox One and PS4 and one of them is making a convincing argument that the incoming gameplay improvements are substantial on the Xbox 360 and PS3. After selling next-gen FIFA 14 and touting enhancements that were only possible due to the new hardware now the company must backtrack somewhat in order to promote their latest effort.
Of course for those who haven’t made the jump to the new generation the improvements in gameplay, presentation, and atmosphere could prove worthwhile. EA has released descriptions of five prominent areas of advancement relating specifically to gameplay.Â Read more
Two months have passed from when RBI Baseball 14 was initially announced and now MLB Advanced Media is finally following up with information on the game. As expected it will be a digital download and feature simplistic gameplay and limited features.Â It’ll be out for Xbox 360, PS3, iOS, and Android on April 10 with Xbox One and PS4 said to follow “shortly” after those launch. Price is yet to be announced.
RBI 14 will feature two-button controls and the game modes are limited to Exhibition, Season, and Postseason. There is no online play functionality. It apparently won’t utilize microtransactions which is a relief considering MLBAM’s track record on mobile. All teams and licensing are included but rosters will be limited to 16 players. The focus is on accessibility and making games quick to complete.
Ultimately the hope out of a digital download-only sports game that won’t top $15 is to get some fun out of it. The experience isn’t going to be as rich as a full retail release title and RBI never was meant as a competitor to MLB: The Show. Whether this route with RBI will be seen as appealing to consumers remains to be determined.
[This post has been updated in the days since free agency opened]. It’s been a busy first day of free agency with a large number of quick signings and some big name players hitting the market. DeMarcus Ware, Julius Peppers, and likely soon Darrelle Revis are among those that have joined the pool of available names.
Here’s a chance to see some of the more high profile players in their respective new uniforms with screenshots of them from Madden NFL 25. This post will be updated with more as additional signings become official.Â Read more
One of the most common gripes with sim baseball video games – and something that many believe prohibits a more mainstream crowd from playing them regularly – is how long each game takes to complete. Often a single game will encroach on an hour and a good portion of that won’t be very engaging. While some other sports may find themselves taking nearly as long they don’t feature 162 game seasons making Franchise mode daunting to advance through without considerable simming of the schedule.
With that in mind MLB 14: The Show is introducing two new optional features that go beyond just removing presentation elements to help make the game more inviting. Quick Counts will throw batters to the plate with a pre-calculated count. Not only will that reduce the time spent for each at bat but theoretically result in more realistic walk and strikeout numbers. Player Lock will allow users to play through a game as an individual player as though it was Road to the Show. That could be especially appealing to those who play through Franchise with teams that aren’t stacked with talent and are building for the future.
Of course taking advantage of either option would mean giving something up. Quick Counts will strip much of the strategy and mind games that go on throughout each at bat and the game. Player Lock will remove the majority of the influence a user will have on a game.
What do you think about these features and the desire to find ways to make baseball games faster to play? Leave your thoughts in the comments and vote in the poll below!
Creative director of EA Sports UFC, Brian Hayes, held an AMA on Reddit over the weekend that surfaced some new details about the upcoming launch of the franchise. Though initially the company released info on a lot of features very early in the process (last summer at E3) there hasn’t been much since outside of screenshots to reveal fighters included on the roster. Even the release date remains unannounced.
The game appears to be headed towards a June release date rather than the originally targeted May. If EA keeps to “spring” that would mean June 3, 10, and 17 are the possible dates. The first look at extended gameplay footage may be coming in a few weeks, there won’t be fights outside of the respective divisions, women won’t be able to fight against men, there is no mode that features Pride, and there is the possibility of a PC version down the line.