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MLB the Show 19: Bryce Harper's Cover, Latest Trailers and Soundtrack

Chris Roling@@Chris_RolingFeatured ColumnistMarch 22, 2019

Philadelphia Phillies right fielder Bryce Harper runs to the dugout during the second inning of a spring training baseball game against the Detroit Tigers Wednesday, March 20, 2019, in Clearwater, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
Chris O'Meara/Associated Press

MLB The Show 19 is the next evolution of one of the more prominent sports titles in the annual gaming catalog. 

The March 26 release promises big facelifts to a number of familiar modes and mechanics. Fittingly, developer SIE San Diego tied itself to Bryce Harper for the cover of the latest release, which means a shift of sorts for the cover, too: 

MLB The Show @MLBTheShow

Breaking News: Harper, Phillies reach agreement: https://t.co/fCHLTdfb4J https://t.co/PCYVTx5j2u

Simple and to the point, as are some of the big changes coming to the game this year. 

The new "March to October" is all about keeping it simple, after all. Players pick a team and only get thrown into the fire during the course of a regular season at its most critical moments.

Granted, a simulation where players can step in when they want to have an impact as opposed to playing every single second of the calendar before the playoffs isn't anything new to sporting games. But SIE San Diego has put its own twists on the idea, with a player's performance tied to a momentum mechanic that then dictates how the team performs when the simulation picks back up again. 

IGN recently took a deep dive on the mode: 

The idea is superb. Simming seasons is a pastime in sports video games—so is frustratingly starting the simulation over because it didn't go the way a player intended. If MLB The Show 19 pulls this off properly with its streamlined approach, this won't be a concern in baseball games, at least, any longer. 

Slight facelifts also apply elsewhere. 

Road to The Show is once again leaning into the fan-feedback crowd and tweaking the experience. This time it is the further implementation of more RPG mechanicsplayers not only have more control over their created player's stats and performance but their off-field approach as well. 

A gameplay session hardly passing the 20-minute mark showcases the new workout minigames and roles players will have to juggle, both from a player archetype and locker room relationship standpoint: 

As always, the usual upgrades on the field will make an appearance. 

This year, said improvements come away from the batter's box for the most part. Factors like arm strength and motions will play a part in helping defenders stand out from each. More importantly, the changes will mean players better match their real-life counterparts on the field, not just when at the plate. 

Some of these changes made a new gameplay trailer: 

In the quality-of-life department, the soundtrack is always one of the bigger talking points of a sports game. MLB The Show 19 has been an industry leader in this regard for a while now and the next edition of the game doesn't figure to disappoint. 

While nothing is official yet, the game's Twitter account gave a recent nod to producer Mike WiLL Made-It, featuring some of his music in the background of the latest release's new gameplay videos. It's far from the only time the game has thrown out some of the producer's hits on the lead up to release, even offering up game playlists on Spotify

In other words, players can expect another strong, versatile soundtrack with a name like Mike WiLL Made-It involved, as well as the option to throw their own songs into the mix. 

With new features, a streamlined process and customization on tap as the apparent themes for MLB The Show 19, the latest edition in the longstanding series again seems set to launch with plenty of praise and a versatile experience sure to last a variety of players deep into the summer and beyond. 

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