MLB 17 The Show has been out nearly a month, but its servers are as spotty as ever as increasingly angry fans have begun venting their frustration at Sony San Diego.
Players of Diamond Dynasty—the game's Ultimate Team mode—have been hit the hardest. In the early going, "access token" errors made it impossible to even access the online servers. Now, completed games are being sent to a "processing queue," where they either delay stats-based missions or disappear entirely.
But events have been the real tipping point, says Operation Sports community manager Chris "MilleniumOS" Gunther. Billed as a way to earn prizes by winning games with a prescribed team, events have been emblematic of MLB 17's problems on the backend from the start. The very first event, a Bronze-only competition that was scheduled to go live April 4th, was shut down and delayed for 24 hours due to improper restrictions that enabled players to use stacked lineups. Since then, servers have twice gone down completely, and games have continued to disappear into the processing queue.
Community reaction has ranged from anger to frustration to exhaustion, says Gunther. "All of these feelings are just as many users spent considerable money on the mode already. However many of these users have taken to social media to dole out personal attacks to many of the developers who have personal accounts ranging from Twitter to Facebook. The absence of direct communication from Sony combined with the lack of strong community leadership due to the relative age of the Diamond Dynasty game mode has led to the feedback becoming more and more toxic as the days pass."
When I reached out to Sony to see what was going on, I was directed to a "Note for our Community" containing their official comment on the matter.
Since launch, we have identified and addressed a number of issues related to online gameplay-from freezes and hangs, to longer than normal wait times for the game processing queue. We're still all hands on deck working to remedy outstanding issues.
The note also covers issues like the processing queues, and promises a new patch designed to address the issues, as well as "in-game content."
Comments have been predictably harsh. In one of the cooler-headed notes, a player wrote, "I can't speak for everyone but honesty goes a long way with me. It's been a little frustrating watching other people go thru their missions and unlock cool things you guys have added to the game while I've basically resorted to sticking to franchise and RTTS because those are the only modes I haven't had many problems with. Server errors have made 'flipping' for stubs much more difficult than last year - I'm hoping that's not by design but maybe it is? I think what the entire community can agree on is that we want to play this game the way it was meant to be played."
Some things never change.
But you might want to decide whether you care more about framerate or visual fidelity.
Meanwhile, over at the MLB The Show subreddit, a sticky post simply titled 'Server Status' asks: "Should we sacrifice a Spring Training division player to the server gods? We're running out of options."
Server issues, of course, are nothing new in MLB The Show. Online play has been a major sticking point for the series going back to the PlayStation 3, and only recently have things stabilized enough to make Diamond Dynasty a worthwhile venture. What makes The Show 17's server problems notable is that they've persisted for weeks now, making the game virtually unplayable for a large swath of the general population.
Absent the server problems, of course, MLB 17 The Show is generally very good, as I noted in my review. The fans seem to agree, making the current problems all the more frustrating.
More problematic though, says Gunther, is what the community perceives to be Sony San Diego's comparative lack of engagement on the issue, which he likens to to screaming at a brick wall. "It's going to take a team effort from members of the community with large followings and Sony San Diego to repair some of the self-inflicted wounds."
Sony San Diego has not given a timeline for the release of their patch. We'll let you know when we hear more.
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