Top Critic Average
If you only have a Xbox One and need a baseball game with the MLB license, I would say rent it first to see if you like it. But if you are PS4 owner, I cannot recommend it over The Show or even over Super Mega Baseball 2 on either system.
RBI 19 is another step forward for the returning series, and it's still the only game in town on the Switch if you want a baseball game. But for a game that fancies itself as more arcade than simulation, it's still a bit bland to play for my liking. They either need to fully commit to the Arcade-stylings or try harder to be a sim. I'd expect RBI 20 to be more of the former.
While there are improvements across the board, R.B.I. 2019 still falls short of being a must-have baseball outing. It's fun without being deep, and the lack of online play will be unforgivable to many players. It also struggles technically, which is a shame given that it's hardly the most visually stunning Switch title. Still, if you like the sport then go ahead, buy it and enjoy a game of baseball. Slap a few whoppers. Dominate a Home Run Derby. Have some fun. Just don't expect that fun to last; you'll get fed up quickly and become envious of those dastardly PS4 owners.
R.B.I. Baseball 19 is once again a disappointment. The extremely low production values, lack of game modes, inconsistent animations, and uninspired gameplay result in one lackluster delivery. R.B.I. Baseball 19 would be a hard sell at $19.99, which incidentally is the same price you can currently nab the superior MLB The Show 18 for. But for the launch price of $29.99? Don't even consider it.
While this isn’t the game you play to expect a top-notch simulation of a baseball game, I feel there are certain things RBI Baseball 19 can touch up on in that department to help the crowd their trying to attract with this series.
The lack of depth in RBI 19's basic mechanics has a crippling effect on the whole experience, first as frustration when trying to get used to timing-based batting, then with boredom after you're familiar. On top of that, it's an arcade baseball game that's presented like a sim, but without the depth to back that up or a hook to set it apart from actual sim games, it just feels barren and empty.
Apparent from my extensive collection of sports-based video games, I am a huge fan of sporting titles. From NBA to Madden, and NFL to FIFA, I have always been a follower of sport and the competitive gameplay that these video games provide. One of my favourite memories of my teenage years was playing Brian Lara International Cricket 2005 – what a game that was. Now, that being said, my eclectic mix of sports games has never extended as far as Baseball.
R.B.I. Baseball 19 is a lazy, clunky, uninspired mess of a game. The controls are overly simple and leave little control to the player. The physics are unrealistic and the players contort their bodies in Silent Hill-esque horror after each swing. The format is tired and outdated, and the game bears no resemblance to a competent baseball experience aside from the skeleton of game it presents.
Don't take yourself out with this crowd. For unenjoyable baseball video games, maybe it should be one, two, three strikes, you're out. I don't care if it ever gets back.