Super Mega Baseball 4 has finally launched. Metalhead Software's newest baseball game is a blast for veterans of the series and new fans alike. For those who've picked up the series for the first time, here's a quick guide on how to improve your batting and pitching skills.
Super Mega Baseball 4 – Batting
If you've played any baseball game before, then you pretty much know what to expect with SMB4. The batting system is simple and easy to learn even for new players. But here are a few tips that can help you hit some sweet dingers.
Don't Swing at Everything
Pitchers intentionally throw balls outside of the strike zone to get in your head. You need to watch the ball's trajectory and predict where it will land. Sometimes, the best strategy is to just sit still and let the ball do its thing. If the pitch looks like it's going up too high, don't swing. If the pitch is going to hit the ground, don't swing.
By not swinging, you also open the opportunity to get struck by the ball, advancing you to first base. Patience is key in baseball.
Try to have the pitcher throw as many pitches as possible. The more they throw, the more tired they'll get and the more likely they'll make mistakes. You'll eventually force them to substitute. RP/CPs aren't necessarily worse, but they typically have less stamina and will tire out quickly. It's all about making them sweat for their victory.
Learn the different batting types
There are three main batting types in SMB4. Contact Swings are your standard. While they're the easiest to time, they aren't the most powerful. You may still be able to send a few balls out of the park, but don”t expect to break Barry Bond's (or Aaron Judge's) record any time soon. We recommend using this swing on most occasions, especially if you're just trying to get the bases loaded or take the lead in a close game.
Power Swings on the other hand, have more potential to send the ball flying. They're a bit more difficult to land because you have to gather power before you swing. When charging a power swing, you'll notice the a number that quickly goes faster to 100. Your goal is to get that number as close to 99 before swinging to fully utilize the swing. It's challenging, but definitely rewarding if accomplished.
But be sure not to power swing on every pitch. If power swings could work on every pitch then that's all people would do. You should typically wait until bases are loaded, or if the enemy's pitcher is low on stamina. When their stamina is low, they'll throw ball at slower speeds and make more mistakes. That's the perfect opportunity to strike.
Last but not least, there's bunting. It's pretty self-explanatory, but aiming your swing just above the ball will result in a downward bunt. Bunts are great if you just need to advance the runners to the next base, or potentially the home plate. Sometimes this results in you having to sacrifice a player for a scoring opportunity too. We recommend bunting if you're using a pitcher with a low power rating, or if you just need to advance the bases.
It's a great way to set things up, especially if you have a powerful batter like Hammer Longballo up next to bat.
Additionally, hitting the ball will sometimes whack the pitcher out of commission. While in real life we don't condone this, it's okay in the game. In fact, you may lower their stamina and possibly injure them, forcing a substitution. It's tricky to perform this, as there's no definite strategy to doing this.
Learn the Pitching Arsenal
Pitching is a lot of fun in SMB4. The important thing to note is that different pitchers have different pitch types. Most, if not all pitchers in the game can throw a 4-seam fastball. However, not all can throw curve-balls, change-ups, screwballs, sliders, and so on. Every pitcher can only have 2-5 pitches in their arsenal.
If you're managing a franchise or season team, it's good to have pitching depth. Here are the different kinds of pitches available in the game:
- 4-Seam Fastball (4F)
- 2-Seam Fastball (2F)
- Screwball (SB)
- Change-up (CH)
- Forkball (FK)
- Curveball (CB)
- Slider (SL)
- Cut Fastball (CF)
You can customize the types of pitches each player has in their arsenal on the roster page. However, this can only be done in the customization menu, not after you've started a franchise or season. So be sure to edit your team the way you want before you start a season. Obviously, you don't have to do this since it may be tedious. But we figure it'll help if you at least want a couple of players with specific setups.
From our experience playing the game, we feel 4-Seam fastballs, Curveballs, and Forkballs are some of the best pitches to use. Change-ups and sliders are also good, while we typically didn't use Cut Fastballs a lot. That being said, all pitches have their uses so don't be discouraged from using them all and finding what works best.
It's okay to throw balls.
Always throwing in the strike zone isn't the best idea. Sure, you don't throw any balls, but you increase your opponent's chances of slamming the ball out of the field. Throwing the ball outside the pitch zone will still cause batters to swing at times and secure a strike. Mix and match your play style to confuse your opponent.
You can throw three balls free of charge, but the fourth will advance the batter to first base, so be careful.
Listen to your catcher / Watch for Base Stealing
Your catcher will sometimes signal to you the type of pitch you should make. Don't pitch the ball right away after every play. Sit back and wait for a second to see if anyone's stealing a base, or if your catcher's making the signal.
The catcher will usually make the right call with their recommendation. Listening to them will usually award you a strike or foul ball at the very least. And if someone's trying to steal a base, throw the ball well outside the strike zone for a pitchout. You'll then control the catcher, who can throw the ball to the appropriate base and get an out.
Super Mega Baseball 4 launched today for PS5, PS4, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Nintendo Switch, and PC via Steam. The game comes with two editions. There's a standard edition, and the Ballpark Edition, which will add three new stadiums over the course of the summer. EA Play Members can also play a 10-hour trial of the game and get it for 10% off.