iOOTP Baseball 2011, a popular baseball management sim ported to iOS by Out of the Park Developments, is now available from the app store. If you’ve ever had aspirations of helming a major league team and making any and all decisions about the operations of the club, you’ll feel right at home with iOOTP. If you’d rather swing some pine and flash some leather, you’re gonna want to look elsewhere.
iOOTP Baseball 2011 Pros:
- Tons and tons of detailed statistics
- Plenty of controls over any and all aspects of running a team
- Absorbing and immersive, easily sucks you in
- Three modes and plenty of replay value
iOOTP Baseball 2011 Cons:
- Stats can get a little overwhelming
- Geared toward hardcore fans
iOOTP features no action whatsoever, instead relegating you to making decisions via the entirely menu-based system. There are 3 game modes available to experience: Major League, Fictional League, and Historical Replay (which contains only 3 seasons to start – 1923, 1965, and 2004 – with more to become available via IAP in future updates). Major League utilizes current 2011 rosters, while Fictional League has a few league types created from made-up players. It is the type of game that really allows you to determine your level of involvement and willingness to submerse yourself in the fun. You can actually play out each and every game, micro-managing lineups, depth charts, and other in-game decisions such as when to send in the reliever, when to send a runner, etc. You can also simulate several games at a time or full seasons if you like. If you prefer to simply let the games play out without your intervention, you can feel free to manage player contracts, trades, free agency, drafts, and all of the other behind-the-scenes minutiae for which the GM is responsible. You’ll even need to keep an eye on the news scroll bar to see what other teams are doing and consider how it can affect you.
As you can imagine, you’ll spend a lot of time staring at numbers, numbers, and more numbers. After a while, the menus can start blending into one another, but if you have an analytical mind and an interest in sports, this could become a permanent fixture on your mobile device. It’s hard to describe the appeal of this type of game, but we found ourselves utterly engrossed. There are menus upon menus worth of info to help you make your decisions, and it’s really satisfying to see risky decisions that you make pay off. In some ways, this experience can be just as heart-racing or heartbreaking as following the real-life action of your favorite team.
Visually, iOOTP is like the back of a baseball card gone wild. The various images used help to break up the monotony of looking at what amounts to spreadsheets, and the colors also help to spruce things up a bit, too. The course of each match-up plays out like following a ball game online, with play-by-play text to indicate what is occurring during the game. It feels very organic how it all plays out, which shows just how much thought and effort has gone into creating a realistic experience. There is no audio, which should be remedied in an upcoming update. Controls are all tap-based and quite responsive. Navigating can get a little confusing at times, but for the most part, we were able to find what we were looking for without too much trouble.
Replay value is great, as the whole experience is fairly addictive and begs to be played season after season. The possibility of grooming players who may one day end up in the virtual Hall of Fame is a great touch that adds a clever replayability aspect. Universal support should also be added in a future update, as the devs seem quite invested in providing a top-notch game. Priced at $4.99, iOOTP is a 4.5-Dimple pennant-winning sim.iOOTP Baseball 2011 Review,