Franchise Mode in MLB The Show has remained a consistent staple to the franchise year after year. With Diamond Dynasty at the forefront, San Diego Studios invests a vast majority of their time to the content to last the full season within all the programs offered to DD. Franchise can no longer be ignored, as the league in real life has evolved faster than the video game counterpart. Shohei Ohtani is leading the charge for changing the future landscape of the once beloved game mode.
Ohtani broke many barriers during the 2021 season. The game of baseball has not seen this kind of domination from a player since the days of Babe Ruth. We witnessed a player who was a Cy Young contender on the mound, while hitting at an MVP level. The best part is that he followed it up with two more seasons of better production. This has never been seen in the game, and it definitely has never been seen within MLB The Show. The Show has never had to recode the game to allow duel positions before. San Diego Studios had to rewrite lineup creations to allow Ohtani the ability to be in a set lineup but also be allowed to have a spot in the rotation. It took until 2023 to perfect the change.
But Ohtani is not done there. He just signed a contract for over $700 million. MLB The Show spent years not adjusting for in game contracts to be replicated off of real life contracts. The maximum AAV used to be set at $30 million and contract length being 10 years. Over time, we have seen the term go up to 15 years, AAV up to $35 million, and options to backload or frontload contracts.
But with the Dodgers signing Ohtani with only $2 million AAV over 10 years, with $680 million in deferments, this just broke the game again. Franchise has a new challenge facing itself in how contract layouts will be done. Ohtani just created new opportunities for developers and forced creativity which will further push the boundaries of what the game mode can become.
After years of disappointment from diehard franchise mode fans wanting changes and updates, you will finally have them. It is not from the outcries during Twitch streams or social media rants. It is not from content creators like DaddyDimmuTV calling them out consistently to put pressure on the studio for needed (let alone any major) changes. It is likely from one man, who intentionally set himself up for life by breaking every barrier that MLB has up in his way.
He also unintentionally (and hopefully for good) fixed a dying game mode that will now flourish for years to come.