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MLB09 The Show Community Preview Event

Ramone Russell's Avatar + Posted by Ramone Russell on Feb 13, 2009 // Community Manager, SCEA San Diego Studios

Hey everyone, Ramone Russell here, Community Manager for the SCEA San Diego Studios. Last Thursday and Friday marked the first time we here at SCEA opened the doors of the studio to the general public. We decided to do this for a multitude of reasons, some not as obvious as others.

We care a great deal about the people who purchase our games and what they have to say about them, good and bad. We are always striving to take the MLB09 The Show franchise to the next level of realism and authenticity as an MLB simulation. With these and other goals in mind we spent a substantial amount of time over the past several months overhauling the developer/consumer relationship at the studio. The culmination of which is our first Community Day here in San Diego, involving the MLB Development team and members of the “Shows” community.

The purpose of the event was to give fans of the franchise an in-depth look at how the game is made, and who it’s made by. We let the attendees pick the brains of the development team and give feedback on the game for future use. In contrast we picked the brains of the attendees to help give us a feel for what people are expecting from the franchise and how we can make it better moving forward.

The event is just one part of a comprehensive Community Initiative we have adopted this past year. The relationship between a development studio and the consumer base/community is one that can be mutually beneficial to all parties involved. We love making great games and I’m sure everyone out there loves playing great games. Moving forward we look to build upon the relationships we have and create new ones.

I’m sure you are thinking, “How did the event go?”

The attendees were Edwin (a.k.a. Pared), Bryan (a.k.a. Pastapadre), Michael (a.k.a Knight165), Bob (a.k.a. Nemesis), and Jim (a.k.a. Jim416), all of whom are members of various community fan sites across the net.

After the event was over, I asked them this question: Could you sum up your experience at the SCEA San Diego Studios?

“The trip to SCEA San Diego Studios is beyond what I was expecting. Between visiting other companies and Sony’s long-standing closed-door policy, I was surprised to see how inviting and willing to share everyone was with the members of our gaming community. Between long detailed discussions about the most intimate details to the joking around while watching others play, Sony really provided a welcoming atmosphere throughout the entire trip. I think the event left all of us completely impressed.” – Edwin

MLB 09 The Show Community Day edwin

Edwin enjoying the game

“I guess what impressed me the most is that you guys are businessmen with a passion for your product. The facilities that we visited did not ooze gaming, they oozed people hard at work and dedicated to a game they obviously have a passion for. Your kindness and patience with us was appreciated. It was crunch time for you guys and to set aside time like that was gratefully appreciated.” – Jim

MLB 09 The Show Community Day Jody

Producer Jody Kelsey left, and Jim right going to head-to-head on MLB09 The Show

“To begin, I know that Sony was a little apprehensive in letting the general public in for such an unprecedented look at the development process and access to the developers themselves. I hope that the results of Community Day allay those fears for the future. To me, I think the Community Day was a great success. It gives the buyers of the game…a much better understanding (through the members who attended) of just how difficult each process actually is and how much time it does take to complete tasks that will eventually turn into an aspect of the game.

As good a time as we had in the studios, I hope it was apparent to the dev team (and in turn the Sony Corp) that we, the Community Leaders took the opportunity seriously. We each tried to come into the event with a plan to get as much information as we were allowed to as many of the members of the community as possible, and it wasn’t just the four of us, but the entire community through us. The Community Question thread was a great example of that…but the Community Answer thread, I think shows just how much buzz it got and what a great success it was. From the comments I read…the community also saw the event as a great success.” – Michael

MLB 09 The Show Community Day Ramone

Community Manager Ramone Russell left and Michael right. I’m enjoying the beating he is taking on the new Legend difficulty level in MLB09 The Show.

“I really appreciate the opportunity to check out the game and take in a greater understanding of everything that goes into their development. The open access to the MLB 09 The Show producers was especially impressive in that so many floated in and out over the two days actively answering questions and considering feedback all while sharing in the enjoyment being had. It was great to have such a significant amount of time dedicated to playing the game and the discussion that came out of that. I definitely would like to thank everyone involved in putting it together and making it such a positive experience that will only pay dividends for the game and the community in the future.” – Brian

MLB 09 The Show Community Day Brian

Brian far right, your friendly neighborhood CM left and Senior Producer/Designer Kolbe Launchbaugh top left.

“This being my first exposure to a community event, I really did not know what to expect. After spending some time, I immediately saw how valuable these events can be. Anytime you can bring the developers and the consumer together face to face you gain a wealth of information on where each party is coming from. I know how something like this could make certain individuals a little apprehensive because you are exposing the game so to speak. But as community leaders and having time to spend with the developers and the game only strengthens the relationship. The developer gets to see how the customer base is playing the game and we as gamers get to ask questions about the thought process of why things were developed a certain way.” – Bob

MLB 09 The Show Community Day team

From right to left sitting down Lead Animator Chris Clements, Bob holding the controller, Edwin, Brain. Standing up from right to left Producer Jason Villa, Senior Producer Chris Gill, Designer Greg Batalucco, Producer Jody Kelsey, Director of Product Development MLB Chris Cutliff and Designer Lourne Asuncion. Bob is enthralled in a close game on Legend that he eventually lost. The room went nuts when he couldn’t pull it off.

MLB 09 The Show Community Day artists

Character Artists from left to right Eric Heim, Joel Benjamin and Michael Jones. We are all heckling Edwin because he’s losing to the Yankees as the Mets ten to zero.

In closing our first Community Preview Event was a huge success and a major step in the right direction as we continue to push the envelope of developer/consumer interaction here in San Diego. Thank you for reading and stay tuned – this is just the beginning.

//Add Your Own

31 Comments

1

+ Pared on February 13th, 2009 at 12:35 pm said:

Lies! The Yanks never had a lead on me!


2

+ RedGiant17 on February 13th, 2009 at 12:43 pm said:

Another good update. Tons of new features this year make this a must have for baseball fans.

Is it too late to add an asterisk (*) to A-Rod’s stats?


3

+ skynidas on February 13th, 2009 at 12:45 pm said:

The demo was awesome guys, you did a really good job developing this game.


4

+ PhillyManOfSteel on February 13th, 2009 at 12:48 pm said:

All you Sony guys rock!!!!

Thanks for making the best sports video game in the world!!!

And alos a huge thanks to Pared, Knight165,Nemesis, Jim416 and Pastapadre for giving us all the great info on the MLB 09 The Show!!


5

+ chanskie on February 13th, 2009 at 1:12 pm said:

Wow…..Jim is cute~~~! i will buy this game just for him….lol


6

+ EnigmaNemesis on February 13th, 2009 at 1:26 pm said:

@4

/agree

Thanks guys. And Sony, keep up the great work. Loved the demo, and looking forward to March 3rd.


7

+ riZe- on February 13th, 2009 at 1:46 pm said:

Stunning.. no words. It’s just sad to see that this epic adventure does, in fact, eventually end. Hopefully they continue the series after this one somehow. Props again guys.. wow.


8

+ riZe- on February 13th, 2009 at 1:47 pm said:

Oh damn, wrong blog.


9

+ NEfanman on February 13th, 2009 at 2:04 pm said:

Great….can I go next year….I’d be happy for some SD weather and playing the demos. As it is I have played the demo of Rays/Phillies about a 1,000x over. Enough already, can I get an advance copy?

Hey..worth a shot.


10

+ Major01 on February 13th, 2009 at 2:30 pm said:

Thanks for all your hard work on this game guys. Day one purchase for me, cant wait.


11

+ Dehshizknight on February 13th, 2009 at 2:38 pm said:

Best baseball game!

Now lets go for best basketball game :)


12

+ Sereal_Killer on February 13th, 2009 at 2:54 pm said:

i love mlb the show and with the updates and comunity support u guys have been giving i see no reason not to buy this game.

im glad that more devs are following in the footsteps of warhawk , ubcharted , socom and KZ in giving good support and comunications with its fans.

i only wish sony would keep us more up to date with firmware tho the way home is being handled is not a bad start


13

+ wizeguy22 on February 13th, 2009 at 5:05 pm said:

cant wait for this game (go Yanks)…. thanks to sony for having blog posts like this, i like these posts the most.. ( i rhymed ) :)


14

+ GoodFella2487 on February 13th, 2009 at 5:26 pm said:

I asked this on the last blog and never got a response, even though the posts before and after me did. Could you please tell me if the FPS drop during the pitcher/batter sequences will be in the retail version of the game?

The framerate drop conflicts with the timing of the swing. Please let me know if it’s been eliminated.


15

+ Jeigh on February 13th, 2009 at 5:41 pm said:

Hey, hey let’s leave A-Rod out of this. The only reason I say so is because he used to be a star player for the Mariners, back when I even marginally paid attention to sports. Keeping that in mind, having official players doesn’t really affect me all that greatly- for all I care, drop the MLB license and just go crazy with extra money making up fictitious players, making custom bats like swords, guns and spears, and whatever crazy ideas you may have. Actually, what is the Hot Shots team doing at the moment- I don’t think they’ve ever made a baseball game and I’m thinking it’s time they did. (What can I say? The bright colors attract nitwits like me. =P)

On a side-note to Jeff, that article from CrunchGear isn’t exactly the most flattering thing. Even Gamespot’s is slightly less demeaning (read: slightly).


16

+ Bruno911 on February 13th, 2009 at 7:09 pm said:

I was never a fan of sports games but hey this game is really good looking. Good Job!


17

+ acerazer1 on February 13th, 2009 at 8:07 pm said:

Poor A-Rod, one day he’ll be synonymous with steroids in the average idiot’s mind, just because of what people made him out to be: Savior of the Home Run Record. Oh well, he’s the richest athlete ever, I’m done pitying him.


18

+ Jeigh on February 13th, 2009 at 8:30 pm said:

@ acerazer1

Huh, that’s a good point. I’d gladly be tarred with the epithet of “steroid user” if it meant earning as much money as he has- let the tar fly. :P


19

+ KinG-SwifT on February 14th, 2009 at 9:57 pm said:

please add the eye toy to this game ALREADY!!!!!!!!!!!


20

+ BaseballBreather on February 15th, 2009 at 7:04 pm said:

Yeah, im Phillip and im fifteen, ive always been waiting for the addition of rain, rain delays, etc. as a high school baseball player myself i encounter rain situations and tornadic weather, and when happenings like that occur playing a video game draws you to the allure of having a great aspect such as that. Baseball is an awesome sport. I mean the more you like something the more you go in-depth about that “something.” Ive noticed the improvement on the game of 09 the show as far as signature stances, pickoff attempts, camera shots, updated replay angle, rounding off base hits in the field, and the amazing legend mode, which makes gaming so much more addictive. Im a fan of 2ksports also. I have heard and have seen some of the improvements in their games so far but will they capitalize? The one thing that separates you game from their that might actually get gamers to purchase 2k9 is the fact that there are rain delays, and COLLISIONS, which i have never seen on MLB The Show. Please take this into consideration. I would appreciate the help. Thankyou.


21

+ ramos1224 on February 15th, 2009 at 10:32 pm said:

Thanks guys mlb 08 was awsome…09 looks even better this game by far is gonna be the best game for ps3..good job…mlb fan for life!!!


22

+ ramos1224 on February 15th, 2009 at 10:36 pm said:

great game again guys! I wanted to know will mlb 09 be updating rosters on a daily basis when playing online, if not when?


23

+ BestKevin on February 15th, 2009 at 11:42 pm said:

I was wondering if when you make a player, if there is going to be “voice recognition” for both first and last name? Instead of the announcer only saying the last name.. Get it?


24

+ Vinny_77 on February 16th, 2009 at 2:51 am said:

My only wish for this years game that hasn’t already been announced is an option to enter the draft in Road To The Show. It would be much more realistic and more fun for several players to enter the draft and have to work your way up through the team that drafts you instead of the team you choose. This would give players another goal to one day get to play for their hometown and should be an easy option to implement into this year’s game.
Regardless, MLB 09 The Show will be a MUST BUY ASAP! Keep up the good work Sony!


25

+ Exodus_Lang on February 16th, 2009 at 9:40 am said:

@24
Check out the MLB 09 blog post from Jan. 27, 2009.

“Once you’ve settled on your player’s look, you now have a choice – enter the draft and let your fate be decided by the powers that be, or for those OCD heads not willing to let fate decide, you will still have the ability to select your favorite team.”

http://blog.us.playstation.com/2009/01/27/mlb-09-the-show-%E2%80%93-road-to-the-show-enhancements/


26

+ lucky_the_kat on February 16th, 2009 at 12:19 pm said:

Hey guys, I love this game. Each year it keeps getting better and better! I am impressed with the new additions such as the 40-man expanded roster, the lighting effects, the mascots, and the cheers/jeers capability. Those things are awesome! Also, I have bought MLB THe Show every year since 2006 and twice that year: once for the ps2 and once for the ps3. In fact, your game is the sole reason I got a PS3! Here comes the but…actually think of it as constructive criticsm…I am curious to know why the questions about HR Derby and old stadiums have been ignored? Are you guys avoiding the questions for some reason? I understand that there may be licensing issues with the old stadiums but you did have them available for the ps2, and for that matter HR Derby was also in those games? I just don’t understand and would like an explanation please? I mean if it is a matter of time to implement these things, could you put them out as dlc. I’ll wait…shoot I’d even pay extra for these things as dlc. Anyways, thanks for making the greatest and most addicting game in the world. Peace out. Oakland A’s 2009 Champs!


27

+ boots0718 on February 16th, 2009 at 4:01 pm said:

Hi Guys. I was wondering if you fixed the freeze issue at the load screen on mlb 08. I hope I can play this game this year.


28

+ boots0718 on February 16th, 2009 at 4:09 pm said:

I SHOULD HAVE SAID. FIX FREEZE ISSUES AT LOAD SCREEN FOR MLB 09, PLEASE!!! GREAT DEMO.


29

+ JsiN79 on February 16th, 2009 at 5:35 pm said:

Question?.. if you’ve got a created player in the Road to the Show mode ’08, can you still play that saved player in ’09?


30

+ TheBigBadWolf76 on February 18th, 2009 at 5:41 am said:

HI,

One question. If I’m playing an on-line game, will that person hear my walk up batter music that I have put in for that specific batter or the chants that I have up loaded?

Thanks,


31

+ BI1975 on February 19th, 2009 at 2:22 pm said:

I agree that hopefully the freezing issue that plagued the 08 and 07 versions with folks who had wireless routers will be addressed. Currenly in order for me to play the game, I have to go and shut down my computer, my router and my modem for a few minutes and then bring them online one at a time and the I have to run in and power on the ps3 to get the game to load up, it really stinks. I would love to know if this issue has been finally fixed after 2 years of games and endless amounts of people talking about it on other forums on the sony website and not a single person from Sony or SCEA ever came on the forumns and acknowledged the problem and if you called Sony about it they claimed “network traffic”. I just don’t want to be jerked around again with this game because once you finally get it up and running it’s a great game. SCEA, please respond to us and let us know that you finally addressed this issue…PLEASE….


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