Our review of Out of the Park Baseball @ootpbaseball

UPDATE: The developer emailed me with some comments related to issues about the game we raised in the software. Please see just below for a transcript of those comments.

You can hear some of the HHS folks review the great baseball simulation software, OOTP Baseball, on the latest episode of our podcast–Episode 10. (Get to that by clicking on the podcast tab near the top of the screen.)

If you’re interested in buying the software, please use the links in the right sidebar.


In the iOS game that runs on iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad, teams don’t move between cities and expansion doesn’t happen in historical replays, but in the PC/Mac game, those things happen.
RE the easiness: You can make trading and other things more difficult in the PC/Mac game too, vs. the iOS version. There are options for that in the PC/Mac game, but you can’t in the iOS version.
(The 2013 version of iOOTP is the current one, BTW – 2012 is last year’s version.  In the PC/Mac game, version 14 is the new one and 13 is last year’s. I know, our naming convention is screwy and we should change it at some point, but it’s something that was established before I started working for them.)
In general, the iOS version is geared more toward casual players whereas the PC/Mac game has many more customization options, as well as the ability to set up online leagues.  Also, you can have the computer take over a lot of things you don’t want to do, such as handling your minor league system.  (In Manager Options.)
I noticed that you talked about those things later in the review, but I just wanted to point those things out for the future.  I hope you don’t mind.  We’re really happy you guys covered the game.

10 thoughts on “Our review of Out of the Park Baseball @ootpbaseball

  1. 1
    CursedClevelander says:

    I’ve always been a Baseball Mogul guy, but haven’t been a big fan of this year’s edition. How would people compare the two? I’ve seen reviews on other sites, but I trust my HHS brethren to steer me in the right direction.

    • 2

      I’ve played both Baseball Mogul and OOTP, but I have a 10-yr. old version of the Baseball Mogul desktop software, so it’s not a really fair comparison vs. a fairly recent version of OOTP (albeit just the mobile version).

      You probably know much more about Baseball Mogul than I do, but my main frustration there was the setting for the expertise level of the opposing manager. When I set it at lower levels, I dominated, but when I raised it to higher levels, I struggled. And it wasn’t that I was being out-managed (I don’t think), but that it affected the performance of the players, which baffled me. Perhaps I wasn’t patient enough.

      Keep in mind that I only bought one version of the software and never upgraded, so I’m far from an expert on Baseball Mogul; or OOTP, for that matter.

      As I said on the podcast, OOTP (at least the mobile version where you play against the simulated manager) became a little too easy to dominate as well. So perhaps my criticisms are similar, except that OOTP doesn’t allow you to increase the expertise level of the opposing manager.

      Visually, it seems OOTP does not measure up to Baseball Mogul, but I think the simplicity of the some of the GM-related functions make OOTP a little better. Although, you might consider this a point in BM’s favor.

      The bottom line is, I probably don’t know enough about either product to sway you one way or the other, but since I talked about both on the podcast, I thought I should respond to your comment.

      Let us know if you decide to make the switch and what you think as a result.

    • 3

      Perhaps you’ve seen these, but Bradley Woodrum at Notgraphs did some pretty thorough reviews of both:



    • 6
      brp says:

      I’ve played a fair amount of Mogul 2011 and much more 2013; however I think I may give OOTP a shot… there are some complaints I have with BBM, and it would be interesting to see how I feel about OOTP.

  2. 4
    Brad Cook says:

    I sent in the developer comments quoted above and wanted to add to Dan’s comments to say that in the PC/Mac version, you can, for example, change the trading difficulty if you want more of a challenge. It tends to be harder to dominate on the PC/Mac side – the financials are more complicated, too, and owners don’t tend to be as lenient with money. (Also, you can get fired in the PC/Mac game, although that’s an option you can switch off.)

    The iOS game is geared more toward casual play, and as such, we erred on the side of “have a fun time winning a lot of World Series” whenever we could (without it being too tough – I’ve had some 100-win-plus teams get knocked out in the playoffs). Also, you can’t really cheat in the iOS game, whereas in the PC/Mac game you can turn on commissioner mode and, for example, put all the best players on your team, or wreck the ratings of players you hate, or otherwise muck around with things like a 100-foot-tall Bud Selig stomping across the MLB landscape.

    • 5
      Brad Cook says:

      That ahould say “without it being too *easy*,” rather than “too tough,” above.

    • 8
      Jim Bouldin says:

      I’m curious about the grain of resolution of the game simulation engine itself. Does it get to a pitch by pitch, location and movement type of detail, based on pitch f/x data? Or something coarser, and if so, how coarse? I read what info I could find but it didn’t help much.

      • 9
        Brad Cook says:

        Hi Jim:

        When playing out a game, there’s a pitch sequence box that shows you the location and type of each pitch in an at-bat. It doesn’t quite go into the detail that Pitch F/X offers, but you’ll see, for example, that a pitch was an 80 mph slider on the inside corner of the plate.

        For each at-bat, you can go pitch-by-pitch or one-pitch – the latter gives you the result of the at-bat. You can switch between the two, so you can go one-pitch until, say, you have a runner on base and want to figure out the best time to steal.

        Hope that helps.

        – Brad

  3. 10
    RichW says:

    As a long time OOTP player my bias is obvious. However if any of you have ever wanted to create your own baseball world this game is the only one capable of letting you do it in so many ways for a very reasonable cost.

    Historical leagues can be replay types like other games but you never have to buy a “season” disk so you can play any past season or play 100 years or more. You can play “alternate history” where you let players develop and age and get injured via the game settings. You will see some unfamiliar or obscure names become stars and some legends fail to materialize. You can start in any year or era and play into the future with fictional players if desired.

    You can play with different baseball era statistical outputs and strategy settings. Don’t like the steroid era numbers or pitcher usage today? Just apply settings from an era you do like. Want more stolen bases, or less HR? that can be adjusted within the general settings.

    I play fictional player leagues that have more complete games, more steals and less home runs than current baseball but still project a sense of realism along with some 70’s and 80’s numbers and a great fictional history.

    I hope some of you will give OOTP a try.

    I should make it clear that I’m not associated with OOTPD in any way. Just a fan of the game and the company.

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