How to make it thru the winter (Play OOTP baseball)
Most of you know I am very active on twitter and I mostly tweet about baseball but often you will get my take on a movie, tv show, restaurant or just about life in general. But, a few weeks ago I tweeted out about a season I was having in a game called OOTP baseball.
When I was in 5th grade I created a game called Card Baseball. I would line up all of my Topps Cards like a real line up and keep score on a notebook. (I still have plenty of the old box scores) if I didn’t have a card of a certain player I would draw his card. I was always a pretty good artist so this allowed me to use my creativity. Often, I will still go over some old baseball cards and run past a card I drew of a guy like Steve Hammond when I was a kid. As I got older the game I created became a 4 dice game instead of 2. I would allow stats to become a part of the game and a 17 was a hit for .300 hitters but a fly out for lesser talents. It wasn’t perfect but it made the game more fun for me. I played this game when I had spare time through high school and into college. I even had a girlfriend who took an interest to baseball and I would teach her the game by playing card baseball.
So, have I earned my nerd cred yet? Keep in mind I was a very active kid playing 3 sports in high school and baseball in college so I wasn’t just some lazy kid who was afraid of the outdoors and wanted to be inside. I like being busy and feel multi-tasking is a true talent I possess. But, yeah this game eventually went away and quietly was replaces by games like RBI and High Heat. (oh, btw I kept stats for those too)
Video games became more and more complex and for the most part were not realistic enough for me. I preferred the strategy games that allowed me to run a ball club. In the late 90s I started playing a game called Diamond Mind Baseball. I really enjoyed this game quite a bit and over a year period or so I would replay every game of the season I chose. I played the 72 thru 76 seasons over a 5 year period. I did not need immediate results but just enjoyed the idea of turning on my computer and running a game or two. Eventually, Diamond Mind Baseball stopped trying and did not evolve with the new computers. I gave up the game and now had a baseball size hole in my imagination.
I remember our intern for the Royals post game show (Jack Dempsey) would sit above us in our private booth at Royals games playing OOTP baseball. He would tell Robert Ford and I all about the great season his 2016 Royals were having. How a RF named Nelson Arrenado finally broke Steve Balboni’s record and how Luke Hochevar had become a 20 game winner. I was intrigued by Jack’s enthusiasm but left it at that.
I bought an I pad 2 years ago and was going thru my apps about 6 months ago and found that OOTP baseball had a game specifically for the I Pad. I tried it and was hooked pretty quickly. The difference is I don’t have to write down anything. Every little detail is in this game. Line ups vs RH, vs LH. Depth charts, the draft, everything. You can play GM for one season or for a dynasty. The dynasty is pretty cool because each year a group of made up players enter the draft with full scouting reports. I have played as the Expos, Royals, and now am in year 11 of my 1969 Padres franchise.
I began with the 1969 Padres and have traded, signed, or developed a pretty good franchise. I drafted a OF named Marvin Simmons and saw him play for my team from 1970 thru 1980 making 6 All Star Teams and winning the MVP (batter of the year) in 1972. I made a trade for a young lefty named Fred Webber in 1972 and saw him win 144 games for me over a 8 year period. I saw my young rookie SS get off to a hot start batting .409 over 13 games before he got hurt. A few days later I received an announcement that said “Earl O’Donnell will never play baseball again” those were the words of my team doctors. “the young SS sustained a career ending injury in yesterday’s game against Los Angeles at Dodger stadium. It happened making a defensive play.”
Every time, I play as a new team I usually play them up until the current year and I move on. Each game takes minutes and you can simulate as many games as you want stopping them if you have to make a move like placing a guy on the DL. This is addictive and feeds my easily bored brain. Trust me, I still do my job well and spend quality time with my wife and kids and stay active. But, if I am in wind down stage it is so easy to just grab my I pad and see what my team will do in the next big series.
So…if you are interested OOTP is ready for 2013 with complete 2012 rosters with all the new rule changes including an AL West Astros. Each season has unique story lines and players get better or worse over time. If a player is unhappy with his role on the team they will let you know. The longer you don’t address the issue the more serious this headache can become. Do you trade a player to make that guy happy or do you dump the malcontent? You can do a random historical draft where a player like Roberto Clemente can all of a sudden show up in the 2016 MLB draft. The game, I am told, is more in-depth on your lap top but I certainly have really enjoyed the quick fix I get on my I-Pad.
If you are community driven OOTP has a terrific neighborhood of fans who are constantly creating new player cards, stadiums, and other neat things. Some of the big league players that are fans of the game include Pat Neshek and Curt Schilling. The game is 19.99 for the rest of the Holiday Season and if this game becomes popular with our readers we would definitely consider creating a page for all of us to tell our stories on. Or, maybe even create a PTP league.
By the way
iOOTP, the iOS game for iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch, is $1.99 for the winter. The $19.99 price is for the PC/Mac game.
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