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Out of the Park Baseball

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Out of the Park Baseball, abbreviated as OOTP, is a text-based baseball simulator for career, historical, and fictional play. OOTP was originally written in 1998, when lead developer Markus Heinsohn sought to combine realistic replay baseball simulation with career play to satisfy hardcore fans and casual gamers alike. OOTP does not hold a license from nor currently have any affiliation with Major League Baseball.

History

The first version was released in May 1999, with the help of sportswriter Sean Lahman, who sold the game through his website. This initial version received attention from several online gaming sites. The breakthrough release came in 2001 with OOTP 3.

In 2002, Heinsohn joined with other independent developers to form .400 Software Studios to publish OOTP 5. Heinsohn and a few others split from .400 Software Studios in mid-2003 to continue work on the OOTP series as Inside the Park Baseball.

In 2005, OOTP was purchased by Sports Interactive, makers of Football Manager and NHL Eastside Hockey Manager, though Heinsohn remained the game's primary creative force. Out of the Park Baseball 2006 was released on May 31, 2006. Sporting a rewritten codebase and several new features, it was met with mixed critical reaction.[1]

Out of the Park Baseball 2007, the eighth iteration of the game, was released on March 23, 2007, to much better reviews than its predecessor.[2] Out of the Park Baseball 2007 is Metacritic's second highest rated game on the PC platform,[3] scoring higher than The Orange Box, second to Half Life 2, regarded as some of the greatest PC games by critics and users alike.[4] Some feel that OOTP has received biased attention from critics, with many angered by the games' ranking.[5] It's high score is attributed to Metacritic's ranking system, where games with at least 5 reviews can appear in the top 20 list. The game has in fact only received 5 reviews globally, all generally positive.[6]

On September 20, 2007 Sports Interactive announced the amicable severance of relations with Out of the Park Developments and the OOTP franchise.[7]

In December 2007 Out of the Park Developments released Out of the Park Baseball 8, a simple update of OOTP 2007 that adjusted for the split from SI and added a few new features.[8]

Since OOTP2006 the user interface utilizes the P.I.S.D. Ltd platform libraries for cross-platform portability.[9]

OOTP Developments released OOTP X (10) on June 5, 2009. OOTP 11 was officially released on April 14, 2010.

Some renowned sports figures have played the game, including writer and statistician Bill James, sports journalist Roy Firestone, and retired MLB pitcher Curt Schilling.[10][11]

Gameplay

OOTP presents a minimal graphic depiction of a baseball diamond with text indicating positions and on-field action. Scrolling text allows one to follow the game as it unfolds. The game offers HTML reporting ample enough to engage baseball fans. Third-party developers have contributed utility programs that assist gamers in creating leagues, players, logos, and other game enhancements.

Other versions

In 2001, a retail (physical media) version of OOTP3 called Season Ticket Baseball was released.[12] Released a year later was its sequel, a retail version of OOTP4 titled Season Ticket Baseball 2003.[13]

In 2004, Heinsohn released Inside the Park Baseball, which tracked the progression of an individual baseball player. Gamers followed a player’s career from before the draft, through the minor leagues, until possibly called up to the Major Leagues. Inside the Park Baseball was designed to work alongside OOTP 5, whereby one might insert a player into an OOTP 5 season.

References

External links

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