IOOTP Baseball 2013
Developer: Out of the Park Developments
Publisher: Out of the Park Developments
Genre: Sports Simulation
Release Date: 05/03/2013
IOOTP Baseball 2013 for iOS is the “on the go” version of the critically acclaimed baseball simulator Out of the Park Baseball 13. Last year I wrote about the second iteration. While I enjoyed the experience, there was definitely room for improvement. Did the gang at Out of the Park Productions refine their effort?
The answer is: yes. IOOTP 13 improves upon its predecessor in one major factor: easy navigation. The ability to use gestures to access previously viewed screens is a big help. Additionally, the screens are easier to access. This may be due to my change from an iPod to an iPad, but there were fewer times that I ended up not being able to go from one screen to another due to layout limitations.
But, you ask, what about the baseball?! Relax. The OOTP experience comes through in spades. While playing, the interface is natural. The touch commands are well thought out and organized as such to make it very intuitive. The ability to jump into the 2013 MLB season, with accurate rosters, means that a person could just pick up and play.
Fictional leagues are similarly a snap to get started. You simply go through the prompts (choosing league size and whatnot) and the game creates teams, logos and players. As an admitted fictional league junky (I’ve had leagues go for around 100+ years of solo play), the near seamless, and streamlined, league creation process makes diving straight into a league a snap.
Some people may balk at the sheer amount of in-app purchases that IOOTP Baseball 13 for iOS has, but those in-app purchases are confined to season and era content. The lack of the ability to import databases (like Cato’s) makes historical simulation kind of a pain in the butt. Having the option to access historical seasons is a big boon – and one that isn’t integral to general play.
You could argue that OOTP Productions could have made more of the seasons free, but I feel that the optional nature of historical sim (and the sectioning of the content by era or season) makes this a nitpicky point of contention. The development team is small, and making sure the databases work and are accurate takes time. They aren’t too expensive and the game isn’t broken without them – they enhance rather than necessitate.
There are a couple of issues I had with the game, though. I found that the touch screen menu response would sometimes scroll me back too far. This would cause minor irritation and a tad bit of frustration, but isn’t game breaking.
The other issue? The line up system could be a tad unresponsive. I would have to insert a player and it may take a couple of taps to do so. Aside from those issues, IOOTP Baseball 13 for iOS is a must buy for baseball junkies.