I have been on the search for decent baseball manager simulator. In my hunt I have played or toyed with half a dozen baseball manager simulation games. These are my favorites. Why so many? Because I view this as getting more “reps” to improve my game time management. Fortunately in the digital age there are many choices. Follow the jump for a short list of games that either has a heavy focus on the manager component or they include a robust manager component.
Here is my list of the top 5 Baseball Manager Simulation Games
Number 5. Strat-O-Matic Baseball
Platform: Table Top.
Where to Find it: Amazon.com, or strat-o-matic.com website.
I love this pen and paper game but it is almost impossible to find anyone to play with. What’s more it can take hours to play a single game. The depth and complexity is amazing. I plan to write a more in depth review of this in the future.
Number 4. Absolute Baseball For Nintendo DS
Platform: Nintendo DS, or Nintendo 3DS.
Where To Find It: Available from Nintendo Store with your DS/3DS via download.
This is an interesting little game in that it is played with fictional teams and you can get right into managing games. It feels very Japanese in the team and stadium names. You can play a single game quickly, however like most of these games the real work is getting into the statistics of the players.
One nice feature, you can “level up” or improve your players.
Number 3. Strat-O-Matic Baseball Express
Platform: Table Top
Where To Find It: Amazon.com
The smaller, friendlier version of Strat-O-Matic. This game gives you enough cards to form two all star teams and then play the game. You get a feel for the core mechanics without worrying about trading for players or managing an entire season. It is great because you can still make many of the decisions that matter to managers and it is less intimidating than the full blown game. Read more about it in my Strat-O-Matic Baseball Express Review
Number 2. iOOTP Baseball
Platform: iOS (iPad/iPhone)
Where To Find It: iTunes, ootpdevelopment.com
Out Of the Park Baseball is a nice little simulator. It is very comprehensive. It has a big brother on the PC and Mac. I have probably played this game the most because it is on my iPhone and iPad and therefore always with me. I like it but it is overwhelming to get started. I am writing a review / tutorial from my experiences playing the game. Check Out iOOTP13 Review Part I
Number 1. MLB The Show 2013
Platform: PS3, PS-Vita
Where To Find It: Amazon.com, Best Buy, PlayStation Network Store / Download.
This is my favorite baseball game, period. And while it is obviously a baseball game it also has built into it one of the best baseball management simulation games ever made. What’s more, it has two incredible features. First, it has THE BEST rules manual I have ever seen written into the game. Want to know what it means to designate a player for assignment? It’s right there. What does it mean when a player is out of options? The games strategy guide explains all in clear, concise language.
However, MLB The Show has two other amazing features that set it apart and make it worth buying a Vita for alone. First, it will sync to today’s baseball schedule so you get todays rosters for teams you follow with updated stats. I can not tell you how cool this is. Secondly, in manager mode it has a broadcast mode that makes it feel like you are watching a real game and you can jump in at any time to take over as the live manager. That you can transfer saves between your PS3 and Vita via the PlayStation Network is a bonus.
In every aspect, MLB the Show is simply the best baseball game / simulator / educational tool ever made. Period. Get it.