So, confession to make.  One of the reasons that I’ve started writing on the blog again is to get my brain back into a writing mode.  I’ve had a few ideas for screenplays working their way through my head over the last few months and I had heard tell from many people that working on your writing muscles can sometimes get those ideas further along.  Lo and behold, that’s what’s happened.  Last night I was getting ready for bed and WHAM almost the entire plot, from beginning to end, of one of my ideas hit me and the feeling was awesome.

I have absolutely no belief that it will amount to anything beyond written words on a page, but it’s been so great to feel good about the process.  Within a few hours I had a 7 page treatment.  That does not mean that I have any chance of turning it into a functioning screenplay, but it’s the first time that I’ve felt really good about something that I’ve personally done in a while and it has definitely helped me get out of a bit of a funk that I’ve been in.

Without a doubt, I’ll be back here hammering out some mundane thoughts about games that I’m playing or sports that I’m watching, but I wanted to thank you all for being here to help me with this process. You may not have known it, but you helped give me the kick in the ass that I needed when I wanted to try and do something different, so thank you for that.

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Quick Monday note

Things  have been pretty crazy around the house in the past few days.  Lots going on with the family and then my parents came to town on Friday evening.  Tomorrow things should settle down a bit and I should have a chance to post something more then.  Cheers!

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I have no idea how many of you that read this site have it (cricket… tumbleweed,) but I have been absolutely loving the the PSVR purchase that I made last June.

For the first few months after picking up the system, I would pick up a game here and there when they would go on sale and each game offered a little something different to the experience.  From the group game play experience of ‘Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes’ to the wonderful environmental puzzle games like ‘GNOG’ and ‘We Expect You to Die’ to the shooters such as ‘Superhot,’ ‘Doom VFR,’ and ‘Farpoint’ to racing games like ‘Driveclub VR’ and ‘Dirt: Rally,’ the games have done an amazing job of putting me in another world when I need a bit of an escape from some of my day-to-day events.

Today, Wipeout Omega collection was updated with a free VR update and it is absolutely amazing.  I never would have thought that a game that moves that quickly would work so well in VR, but I was shocked at how easily I was able to adapt to the speed of the game and loved every second of it.  All that adds to the fact that it is the ENTIRE GAME, without any restrictions, being given the VR addition.

With Sony announcing a $100 price drop on all of the VR bundles, I can’t speak more highly of the PSVR setup.  I know that VR doesn’t work for everyone, but if you don’t have a weak stomach and have the means to pick it up, you won’t regret it.

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New phones

No idea if this is the case for most people, but getting a new phone used to be pretty simple.  I’m not even talking about 10 years ago when you got some funky cable that allowed you to transfer contacts from one flip phone to the other.  I’m talking about 2 years ago.  The process that I’m going through at this point is just crazy.

My new phone, a Google Pixel 2 XL, was delivered to my office around 3 in the afternoon today.  After taking the cable and adapter that it shipped with, I was able to hook it up to my old phone and transfer my email accounts, photos, music, etc. within about 25 minutes.  Very slick process and completely painless.

After that, the pains began.  It only copied over a few of my most recent text messages (and I’m a text message pack-rat) so I had to back those up manually on my old phone, save the file out to Google Drive (because the cable that you get with the phone is USB-C to USB-C so you can’t hook the phone up to a PC) and then import that file back onto the phone.  Not terrible, but a bit time consuming.

Next up was Google Authenticator.  Being a (good) IT guy, I have multi-factor authentication set up for almost every single account that I have.  At this point, it’s upwards of 20+ accounts that are stored in the app, all cycling the second factor password every 60 seconds.  The issue that you run into with a new phone is that there is no way to export the authenticator for each account.

So, for your Gmail account, you need to go into your settings and tell it to generate a code for a new phone, scan it, and then enter the code to complete the process.  Again, not too bad even with 4 gmail accounts on the phone.  Next up, Origin.  Origin’s process requires you to shut off your MFA, then turn it back on again.  The problem with that was the fact that the code that you were supposed to scan with your phone didn’t render, so you had to type in a 20 character password to get it to add the account.  Unfortunately (through bad planning over the last 10 years,) I have 3 Origin accounts (and they can’t be merged) so I had to repeat that process three times.

After Origin, was Uplay.  Just about as bad as Origin.  Log into your account, remove the MFA, then re-add it.  Again, through poor planning throughout the years, I have 2 of those accounts.

It just kept going like this.  Facebook made you remove the MFA and then re-add it.  Nintendo made you remove it and then re-add it.

Snapchat was just about the only one that made it very easy as you do everything through the app and the process is pretty damn simple.

By the time that I was done with getting all of the authentication codes working for all of my accounts, almost 3 hours had gone by… and I hadn’t used a single account yet.  And all of this was before I re-configured the Blizzard authenticator (because they won’t use Google,) and the Star Wars: The Old Republic app.

At this point I feel like I will keep this phone until I retire.  Ugh, what a process.

Oh, and for the 5 minutes I have had a chance to use the phone… it seems nice.

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Quick Monday notes

Head over to the Humble Store and get a free copy of ‘The Darkness 2’ until they run out of keys.  In fact, I have an extra key if someone wants it.  Just email me at glen @ sportsgamerblog . com and I’ll send it to you.   I know the guy who wrote it, and he’s a swell guy and more people should read (or play the games) that he has been involved with.

I meant to write up a few things that came up over the weekend, but they’re a bit more involved than a quick note wrapup.  I should have something up later tonight.

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Just one game

Tonight I had had a chance to play a single game of MLB: The Show 18 against a friend of mine, and it made me realize how great that game could be… if every game was played against a person in the same room.

The matchup was the Brewers against the Cubs and it was a wonderful game that ended with Ryan Braun hitting a walk-off inside-the-park home-run in the bottom of the 9th when the Cubs center fielder misplayed a ball to the outfield to allow Milwaukee to win 5 to 4.

What kept striking me throughout was the fact that the game isn’t nearly as much fun when you are playing against a person who you can’t razz or harass when they make a mistake.  I’m a 43-year old man and I’m not going to jump up and mock someone when I make a good play, but it is a much better experience when you can actually enjoy a good play (or mock a bad one) when you’re in the same room as someone.

One of the best moments of the night happened when the person that I was playing against was making a pitching change.  Instinctively I turned away from the screen to prevent myself from what he was doing.  Old sports game habits die hard, it would seem.


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OOTP 19 is out now

I’ll have some thoughts on it later today, but here’s the press release.

March 22, 2018
Out of the Park Baseball 19 Now Available Worldwide
OOTP 19 features dramatic 3D enhancements, a redesigned interface, new scouting systems, ultra-realistic artificial intelligence, 2018 Opening Day rosters, and more!
Out of the Park Developments, an official licensee of MLB.com, the Major League Baseball Players Association, and MiLB.com, announced today that Out of the Park Baseball 19 is available worldwide, ahead of the start of the 2018 Major League Baseball season on March 29. 
OOTP 19 offers dozens of exciting new features and deep improvements to its award-winning gameplay including a dramatic 3D in-game engine that shows players pitching, hitting, fielding, and running the bases. Images of the new in-game engine can be found in the screenshot bundle and in the trailer.
Out of the Park Baseball 19 includes:
New 3D stadiums and 3D player models with improved on-field movements, including running, sliding, jumping, and throwing.
New in-game screen design for an optimized virtual dugout.
2018 roster sets with all Opening Day MLB rosters, as well as the complete minor league system from Triple-A to rookie leagues and the Arizona Fall League. All Major League (and over a thousand minor league) player ratings will be based on the popular ZiPS player projection system. The 8 international leagues, as well as independent minor leagues in the US, also return this year with accurate rosters.
Rewritten scouting reports that give a more detailed and realistic look at players.
New tournament modes! Create a stand-alone tournament bracket and draw any teams in history into it. The possibilities are endless!
Ultra-realistic AI roster management and in-game decisions.
A reworked ratings module.
User voting for end-of-season awards.
Many more improvements, including:
Redesigned interface, with the ability to choose between 6 different fonts
800 custom team logos for fictional leagues
Improved Manager Home screen, with a more customizable layout and new widget options
A new stat — RA9-WAR (WAR based on runs allowed) — for pitchers
Delayed substitutions for injured players
And much more!
This summer, Out of the Park Developments will unveil an exciting new online mode called PERFECT TEAM. An open Beta will happen this spring, and the company will announce more information soon.
Customers can purchase OOTP 19 for $39.99 from OOTP Developments through this link:
OOTP 19 is also available on Steam:
And on Electronic Arts’ Origin:
OOTP 19 runs on PC/Mac/Linux and like last year it features the American League and National League logos, the World Series trophy, official logos and jerseys for all 30 MLB teams, over 150 Minor League Baseball league and team logos, and historical MLB logos.
OOTP creator Markus Heinsohn conducted an interview for the Out of the Park Developments blog which can be read here: http://blog.ootpdevelopments.com/an-interview-with-ootp-creator-markus-heinsohn/
OOTP 19 predicts the 2018 season
On March 28 at 7 PM Eastern time, MLB Network will feature the results of the 2018 season + playoffs simulation conducted in OOTP 19. Last year, the game predicted that the Houston Astros would win the World Series. Will it make the right call again?
A look back at OOTP 18
2017 was a record-setting year for Out of the Park Developments, which boasted more than 120,000 players of OOTP 18 around the world. More than 3.5 million hours of the game were played on Steam, which equals 405 years. A record peak of 1,147 concurrent players was set on Nov. 9 on Steam, and South Korea is now number two in total sales, surpassing Canada.
The most-accomplished achievement in OOTP 18 was a five-game team winning streak and the three rarest achievements were a player hitting 4 home runs in a game (accomplished by 0.4% of users), a pitcher tossing a perfect game (0.5%), and a hitter having 10 or more RBI in a game (0.6%).
Quotes from OOTP Developments executives
“After nearly 20 years of development, we’re still finding ways to make Out of the Park Baseball even better,” said lead developer, lifelong baseball fan, and Out of the Park Developments CEO Markus Heinsohn. “We can’t wait for our fans to see what we have in store this year.”
“Out of the Park Baseball is unique. Its high quality, delivered over two decades, has created generations of loyal fans who recognize it as the gold standard of sports strategy games,” said Out of the Park Developments CMO Richard Grisham. “Out of the Park Baseball 19 is our best version yet, purpose-built for those fans. We couldn’t be more excited for it.”
About Out of the Park Developments 
Out of the Park Developments is the developer of the award-winning OOTP and MLB Manager series of baseball management simulations, Franchise Hockey Manager, and Beyond the Sideline Football. German-based OOTP Developments was founded by Markus Heinsohn and Andreas Raht in 1999. OOTP Developments has consistently produced games that have met with critical acclaim, including winning Metacritic’s coveted “PC Game of the Year” for the 2016 version of OOTP and “Game of the Year” for the 2007 edition of OOTP, which remains the second highest-rated PC game on Metacritic of all time. Further information on the company and its games is available from the OOTP Developments website, http://www.ootpdevelopments.com
About MLB.com
Established in June 2000 following a unanimous vote by the 30 Major League Baseball club owners to centralize all of Baseball’s Internet operations, MLB Advanced Media LP (MLBAM) is the interactive media and internet company of Major League Baseball. MLBAM manages the official league site, MLB.com,and each of the 30 individual Club sites to create the most comprehensive Major League Baseball resource on the Internet. MLB.com offers fans the most complete baseball information and interactivity across computers and mobile devices, including up-to-date statistics, game previews and summaries, extensive historical information, online ticket sales, baseball merchandise, authenticated memorabilia and collectibles, fantasy games, live full-game video streaming and in-progress and on-demand highlights, live and archived audio broadcasts, Gameday pitch-by-pitch application, Statcast tracking technology, around-the-clock hosted and specialty video programming, complete blogging capabilities, console and mobile video games and the award-winning At Bat and Ballpark mobile applications. MLBAM powers more live events across the Internet than any other company in the world.
Major League Baseball Players Association
The Major League Baseball Players Association (www.mlbplayers.com) is the collective
bargaining representative for all professional baseball players of the thirty Major League baseball teams and serves as the exclusive group licensing agent for commercial and licensing activities involving active Major League baseball players. On behalf of its members, it operates the Players Choice licensing program and Players Choice Awards, which benefit the needy through the Major League Baseball Players Trust, a charitable foundation established and run entirely by Major League baseball players. In 2017, the MLBPA launched Infield Chatter, an innovative social media app created by the Players for the fans and available in the App Store and Google Play. Follow: @MLB_Players; @MLBPAClubhouse; @MLBPlayersTrust.;
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