By Cameron Brooks
As a follow up to Tap Sports Baseball 16, MLB Tap Sports Baseball 17 includes a complete MLB license, allowing the game to feature all 30 teams and their logos. This is in stark contrast to last year’s game which would have players wearing a bland gray jersey with no logos. The game was released to the App and Google Play store on March 28, however; I reviewed version 2.02, the most current version as of September 5. The developer, Glu Mobile, kept the same basic game and premise from the last game. The task is to just play offense and worry about getting hits, rather than pitch or play defense, which is all simulated. The game definitely made sure to show you that it can use official teams and logos, as the loading screen is a picture of Kris Bryant wearing a Cubs jersey and batting helmet. You also get to choose your favorite team the first time you open the game. Although the game is free to play, which usually means that it’s junk unless you continually pay for microtransactions, I found that Tap Sports Baseball was better than most, since you can get fairly far into the game without having to worry about spending money to have a chance to win.
The game is very basic, in that you pick your favorite team and play a 9 inning game against another opponent making sure to be patient at the plate and knowing when to swing. You get a small reward each time you win which can either be cash, the in-game kind, gold, or a franchise player coin. Cash and gold allows you to purchase a draft pick with a late round pick costing 1000 cash, a second round pick costing 4000, a first round pick costing 100 gold, and first overall costing 300 gold. Gold is extremely difficult to come by in large quantities, so I ended up getting second round picks, which can still yield you some good ballplayers. You use these picks in the game and when you win enough you move into a tier and your players get a little bit better. You can also spend some cash to upgrade individual players. Players are judged on 3 categories: hitting, speed, and power. These states can range from 0 all the way to 400 with most players hovering around a 50 overall in the start of the game. Once you move into a tier, their stats increase from being in the 50s to the 70s and 80s. Overall, MLB Tap Sports Baseball is an effective time killer, especially for baseball fans which is not crowded with microtransactions. The only real flaw I found with it is the matchmaking system which will sometimes give you somebody way worse than you and sometimes somebody much better than you. However, it is still very enjoyable considering it is a free game that does not try to do too much and does what it should exceptionally well. Overall I would give it an 8/10.