EA and 2K Games need to take notes from MLB The Show’s Diamond Dynasty

Nick Farrell
mlb op edSan Diego Studio

In a world where ultimate team is the premier game mode in many sporting titles, MLB The Show has set themselves apart from the pack with their commitment to free content for players and unique events. 

The lure to creating your own team within sports games is something that many of us have been attracted to over the years, and this has been especially prominent within FIFA, Madden, and MLB The Show.

While the former two have been touted as extremely pay-two-win, San Diego Studios have been making a name for themselves with the flurry of content present within MLB The Show 21.

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Throughout the game, there’s a wide array of free content, making it incredibly accessible, yet challenging, to field a competent team without spending any money. Forking over cash to build your perfect roster isn’t the problem, it’s the dishonesty towards players that they can make a formidable ultimate team without dropping stacks that’s irritating.

SDS goes a different direction with The Show, and it’s a tactic we should see other companies embrace moving forward.

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Team Affinity season 4San Diego Studio
Team Affinity is one of the many ways players can earn amazing cards for completely free.

No money spent is king within MLB The Show

The goal within ultimate team game modes is to form a roster of players from multiple teams, generations, and other qualities that’ll be formidable against any opponent.

In other titles, players would normally open packs or complete programs to earn some stellar cards. But a lot of the time, these packs can be expensive for the ordinary player. Meaning they wouldn’t normally gain access to some of these cards.

In MLB The Show, however, SDS offers numerous ways for players to earn some of the best cards in the game completely free of charge, and a large portion of the game’s best cards have come from Player Programs or Team Affinity.

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The game doesn’t force you to spend money on cards, but this isn’t to say players don’t spend money on The Show. If you’re able to spend excess cash on the game, then you’ll be able to earn cards faster to progress along with your collections.

However, SDS also gives their players a viable way to complete those same collections simply by playing the game and grinding out the amount of stubs (in-game currency) to purchase cards necessary to complete those sets.

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mlb the show 6th inning boss packSan Diego Studio
Inning programs are one of the many ways we can get free cards within Diamond Dynasty.

While Diamond Dynasty is undoubtedly a grind, there’s a ton of ways for players to earn XP and compete against other players with a similar lineup. Conquest is one of the offline modes that received an overhaul this year, and more often than not, SDS adds lucrative packs hidden in the map for players to find, allowing them to have the chance to obtain a card with over 100,000 stubs sometimes.

The problem that exists with games such as Madden and FIFA is the immediate advantage players receive if they aren’t hesitant to spend money on opening countless amounts of packs or purchasing in-game currency to obtain some of the best players.

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This has ruined a lot of the enjoyment that players could have with ultimate team, since facing an opponent with a significantly better roster often ends in a one-sided affair.

With all this said, MLB The Show is far from perfect, but the changes they’ve made over the years have enabled Diamond Dynasty to become more inclusive for players of all skill levels, and one that is far from P2W.

About The Author

Nick is a former Dexerto Games Writer based in Newfoundland, Canada, who covered a wide array of games and esports. Nick has published bylines at multiple outlets such as G FUEL, NME, Gfinity.