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Directional Hitting in MLB The Show 20

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Old 03-13-2020, 02:15 PM   #9
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Re: This game feels like it wasnít designed to be played on directional hitting

I hit just fine beat Orioles 5-1, it took until later innings to get it going and this was using my sliders from last year to see how they worked on MLB 20.
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Old 03-13-2020, 02:54 PM   #10
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Re: Directional Hitting in MLB The Show 20

It seems I am having trouble pulling the ball on anything but early? Even good timing good contact are all going Way oppo. Anyone else seeing this with directional?
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Old 03-13-2020, 05:27 PM   #11
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Re: Directional Hitting in MLB The Show 20

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Originally Posted by Therebelyell626
I have used directional hitting for a few years now. It feels like this game was only designed to be played with PCI control on. Everything feels like weak contact, even with perfect timing. Does anyone else feel like this?
Directional or Zone is personal preference. As far as the main hitting engine goes, both interfaces are identical (Directional simulates your PCI placement for you and passes it to the engine). In Zone hitting you pick the timing and PCI location. In Directional you pick the timing and influence PCI location (or if you don't influence, it picks for you). For this reason it is better not to influence than to influence randomly and get it half right and half wrong (in that situation you are better off paying attention to location and taking pitches).

I would compare it to manual vs automatic shifting for driving. If you are below average in stick shifting, you are better off using automatic where it handles it for you. Your disadvantage is 'forgiven' though you gain nothing extra for it. If you are above average in stick shifting, you are better off using stick to 'earn' that advantage. This is why professional drivers have to use stick to compete at the highest levels because even a small edge adds up, but you can drive perfectly well either way. In fact automatic accelerates faster than manual and doesn't lose energy to shifts, losing out only because manual is smarter and more efficient in other ways.

For this reason, some players succeed more with Directional, others succeed more with Zone. As you approach Legend difficulty, it becomes more important to use Zone because you have 2 ways to outperform rather than 1 1/2. There is no inherent disadvantage to Directional but you miss out on 1/2 a way to shine. So Zone is not significantly more successful in general. For beginners, Directional is often more successful. To be precise, it depends on if you are above or below average in skill at PCI placement (compared to your 2 other skills - timing and take pitch).

Last edited by Brian SCEA; 03-13-2020 at 05:31 PM.
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Old 03-13-2020, 05:37 PM   #12
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Re: Directional Hitting in MLB The Show 20

Quote:
Originally Posted by Therebelyell626
It seems I am having trouble pulling the ball on anything but early? Even good timing good contact are all going Way oppo. Anyone else seeing this with directional?
A few years back we changed timing feedback so that Good is wider, so it includes some concept of both 'good early' and 'good late' (this depends on pitch location - on an away pitch being slightly late is fine). Unfortunately there isn't a good way to show both meanings of timing: a) your timing was good for that pitch location, b) the exact early/late/direction of your timing more precisely. We've experimented but simple beats out the other versions we tried.

Essentially, the direction of the hit off the bat will tell you the more precise early/late timing you had, after factoring in location. The swing analysis timing field tells you something more that isn't as obvious.

Last edited by Brian SCEA; 03-13-2020 at 05:40 PM.
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Old 03-13-2020, 06:05 PM   #13
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Re: Directional Hitting in MLB The Show 20

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian SCEA
Directional or Zone is personal preference. As far as the main hitting engine goes, both interfaces are identical (Directional simulates your PCI placement for you and passes it to the engine). In Zone hitting you pick the timing and PCI location. In Directional you pick the timing and influence PCI location (or if you don't influence, it picks for you). For this reason it is better not to influence than to influence randomly and get it half right and half wrong (in that situation you are better off paying attention to location and taking pitches).

I would compare it to manual vs automatic shifting for driving. If you are below average in stick shifting, you are better off using automatic where it handles it for you. Your disadvantage is 'forgiven' though you gain nothing extra for it. If you are above average in stick shifting, you are better off using stick to 'earn' that advantage. This is why professional drivers have to use stick to compete at the highest levels because even a small edge adds up, but you can drive perfectly well either way. In fact automatic accelerates faster than manual and doesn't lose energy to shifts, losing out only because manual is smarter and more efficient in other ways.

For this reason, some players succeed more with Directional, others succeed more with Zone. As you approach Legend difficulty, it becomes more important to use Zone because you have 2 ways to outperform rather than 1 1/2. There is no inherent disadvantage to Directional but you miss out on 1/2 a way to shine. So Zone is not significantly more successful in general. For beginners, Directional is often more successful. To be precise, it depends on if you are above or below average in skill at PCI placement (compared to your 2 other skills - timing and take pitch).
Thanks for this Brian! This is the most in-depth overview of Directional Hitting we've ever gotten, and this includes when you guys originally introduced the feature a few years back.

It's good to know what I am potentially leaving on the table by not using Zone Hitting (1/2 bit of control).

I have been on HoF hitting the last 2 yrs, after struggling on All-Star for years prior on MLBTS. I have found how to take as much control as I can using Directional Hitting and have seen the desired results.

I don't like Zone Hitting because I don't like the idea of "aiming" the bat. While in your write up you mention this as level of wanted control. However, I see the inability of me not being able to control the EXACT bat placement as the level of randomness that the players ratings, and baseball in general, dictate. All I can control is timing, when to influence hit direction, and the rest is essentially the hitters "hand eye coordination" (vision).

In real life no one aims the bat, they simply guide their bat, based on reflex to the general area the ball is in. I feel that is what Directional Hitting is replicating for me.

Like you said it's personal preference, but seeing your explanation actually makes me appreciate Directional Hitting a bit more, because its more gracefully implemented than I envisioned.

Last edited by El_MaYiMbE; 03-13-2020 at 06:15 PM.
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Old 03-13-2020, 06:08 PM   #14
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Re: Directional Hitting in MLB The Show 20

Quote:
Originally Posted by Therebelyell626
I have used directional hitting for a few years now. It feels like this game was only designed to be played with PCI control on. Everything feels like weak contact, even with perfect timing. Does anyone else feel like this?
Not at all. I even hit my first HR with a pitcher, ever....in any video game!

I play on Hall of Fame, and I hit a Perfect/Perfect HR with Jon Lester, who has 0 contact and 3 Power!
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Old 03-13-2020, 06:08 PM   #15
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Re: Directional Hitting in MLB The Show 20

So Brian just to clarify for directional it best to donít influence and just worry about timing correct ? Cuz I tried zone and I feel Iím not doing that correctly. I been playing mlb every year and I always go thru this with hitting lol.
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Old 03-13-2020, 06:25 PM   #16
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Re: Directional Hitting in MLB The Show 20

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Originally Posted by COMMISSIONERHBK9
So Brian just to clarify for directional it best to don’t influence and just worry about timing correct ? Cuz I tried zone and I feel I’m not doing that correctly. I been playing mlb every year and I always go thru this with hitting lol.
I'm not the best hitting coach, but this is from my answer to a similar question:

The more important goal starting out is to focus on taking bad pitches and getting the right timing. When you have that down, then focus on pitch quadrant and influence. I.e. the learning progression being: a) not swinging on a ball, b) using good timing when you do swing, c) reacting to pitch location (with timing + influence).

When you try to learn all three things at a time, I don't think you'll do well. If you want to learn to juggle 4 balls first learn how to juggle 2 then 3. But maybe someone else knows better.

All I can speak of is to how things are implemented and designed. For example, bad influences hurt and good influences help - so influencing randomly isn't going to be better than focusing on timing alone. Whereas consistent good influence input is better than no input. The interfaces are designed to also reward individual multiple skills a through c, so that you can progress in skill and hitting has a wide differentiation between skill levels. And moreover, each player has a way to showcase his individual strengths even when he has the overall disadvantage.

To give one example of the result of that design, I think last time we gathered the data a Legend player compared to an Allstar player is something like hitting .355 versus .250 with all other things being equal. Rookie would be .145 (comparable to a pitcher hitting). Or put another way, Legend vs Allstar is like .250 versus .145 - an MLB team hitting against a team full of pitchers hitting. Of course, any one of those pitchers can hit a home run and any one of those top players could strike out - we're talking only over the long run.

The moral is - what you do matters, and skill matters (in the long run).

Last edited by Brian SCEA; 03-13-2020 at 06:29 PM.
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