October 4, 2012

OOTP Baseball...a Review

Oh, Draft Day, you've come and gone and left nothing but the promise of a championship in your wake.

Hold the phone.  I know what you're thinking...it's October and we're closer to Christmas than we are any sort of draft day.  What gives?  Well, Monday, The Out of the Park (OOTP) Laundry League held its inaugural draft and I was fortuante enough to take part.

The Laundry League is the brainchild of friend of The Hall and Seamheads.com founder Mike Lynch.  It was Lynch who came up with the idea that each team owner would only know what “laundry” (team) they would represent...but not the players.
 
"I've run online OOTP leagues in the past, so this time I decided to mix it up and let my owners pick their teams but not their players," Lynch said.  "We'll have the game run the draft and fill the teams, but we'll allow trading, so I'm sure there will be a lot of back-and-forth as everyone tries to lock up their favorites."

And with me busy trying to build a Laundry League dynasty with the Oakland A's, I've asked David Spencer (on loan from Crafty Lefty), to share his thoughts as to why you, too, should be playing the latest installment of OOTP.

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With the playoffs here, it means the baseball season is almost over.  I am not much of a football fan and with the hockey season in serious doubt, how does one span the time between the last out of the World Series and the time when pitchers and catchers report?

Simple, Out Of The Park Baseball 13.

When you open OOTP13, you have plenty of options. You can start just a regular season, you can play a past season (ever wanted to know what the Montreal Expos would do in 1994 had there been no lock out?), you can play a pre-configured game or you can make your own rules.

This is what makes OOTP13 great, you can play however you want.

Say you just want to play a regular game, using 2012 rosters. You get to name yourself as the General Manager to which ever team you would like, or you can act as the Commissioner and take temporary control of a team.

After that, hold on for the ride.

If you select the "General Manager" option you can choose any, and I mean any, team to manage. Want to be the GM of the Jamestown Jammers? Go ahead. The Richmond Flying Squirrels? Go nuts! The Pittsburgh Pirates? Clear the deck, cannon ball coming!

OOTP 13 has every team, league, player, coach, you name it. You can even make sure you never get fired!

As the GM you have as much control as you want. At the start of the season you are told by your owner what his expectation is and from there it is up to you to make good, or bad, on that. You can make trades. Demote players. Promote them. Release them. Everything a GM would do. And if you do not want that much control, you can set the AI to do that for you.

As I said earlier, OOTP is what you make of it and that is what makes this game so much gosh darn fun. The ability to cater it to what you desire it to be. You can do everything or just a little bit. You can play each game individually or you can simulate through them.

I only have two knocks against the game.

The first one is that it is too real. In my first season as the Oakland A's GM (I wanted to challenge myself) I had to use my disabled list often, forcing me to really use trades, waivers, and the farm system. I also forgot to check the contracts of all the minor league coaches, so I found myself having to hire a completely new set of coaches in the off-season.

The other knock, is that it takes up some much of my time! It's impossible to simulate just one day. It's always just one more game, just one more week.

I guess that last one isn't really such a bad thing.

Want to challenge you friends online? You can do that. If you are of the tech savvy type, you can setup an online league and compete against other OOTPers.

Are you on Twitter? Need help? They have a Twitter account that is among the best, offering tips, suggestions, and trouble shooting. All you have to do is ask.

So when you find yourself bored and/or needing a baseball fix over the long, cold winter months, consider OOTP baseball. You will not be disappointed.

You can check out OOTP13 (and I strongly suggest you do) over at the Outside of the Park website.

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Oh, and if you're curious how the Laundry League draft panned out or if you'd like to see my roster before I offer each player $300 to grow out a mustache?  Here's the link.


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