What to Expect from Pro Yakyū Spirits 2024-2025 - TheFamicast.com: Japan-based Nintendo Podcasts, Videos & Reviews!


Sunday, April 14, 2024

What to Expect from Pro Yakyū Spirits 2024-2025

Konami has finally lifted the veil on the next entry into their realistic baseball series, Pro Yakyū Spirits 2024-2025. While very little is known about the game as of right now, we’re here to break down what we currently know and to let you know what to expect from the game. Let’s get into it. 

As of right now, at the time of making this preview, Konami has yet to reveal exactly what the Pro Spirits 2024-25 will offer in terms of modes. Regardless, I think most of what will be in the game can be deduced by taking a look at previous releases. Modes that we can expect outside of exhibition and home run derby are Pennant (for up to 30 years), Koshien Spirits, Star Player and Live Scenario. 

For a little bit more explanation on some of these, Koshien Spirits has appeared in the previous two titles and allows fans to play as a high school student on their journey to Japan’s storied baseball tournament. Along the way, you’ll increase your skills, build relationships with teammates (and the lady folk) and get checked out by scouts. In previous games, this mode was very text heavy but did allow for some short mission based gameplay sections. 

Star Player is similar to Koshien Spirits with the main difference being the focus on professional baseball as opposed to high school. Taking control of a created or existing player, gamers are tasked with building up skills and chatting with several NPCs. Again, like Koshien Spirits, this is pretty text heavy, but you will have some chances to play through a variety of missions. 
Live Scenario, one of my favorite modes from this series and Power Pros, opens up all of the games from the Nippon Pro Baseball season as every team through key moments. These are updated almost on a daily basis (sometimes Konami took their time on these during the Japanese Series, but I digress), so it was always easy to jump in and out of a game. For those of you out there that follow Japanese baseball closely, this mode is great. The only downside is that the scenarios can only be accessed during the year that they happen, perhaps due to licensing with the players. 
While it’s entirely possible that Konami could surprise us with some completely new features, I think it’s safe to say, at the very least, these are some of the modes that you will find in this game. 

Two Year Release Cycle
If you’ve played a western developed sports game anytime in the past few decades, you are well aware that companies pump out licensed sports games on a yearly basis. While not always the case, this leads to a lot of very minor updates year after year that make gamers ask whether or not the changes (if any) are worth the money they’re paying. Konami has been doing things a bit differently for years with their baseball titles with a two year release cycle. For those unfamiliar, Spirits and the Power Pro Baseball series have both seen one game released every two years for the past several iterations. For gamers, this leads to less of an investment and allows Konami more time to come up with new ideas for the subsequent releases. 

Visuals & Audio
Konami is bringing the heat with the visuals in Pro Spirits 2024-25. On top of their impressive previously developed 3D laser scanning technology to bring both players and stadiums to life, the company has built a completely new engine to bring the series to the next level visually. Called the “eBaseball Engine,” this is responsible for bringing all of the sights, sounds, characteristics of both professional players and stadiums in Japan. The company is also using the Unreal Engine to make the game even more realistic with high fidelity visuals for the hair and skin of character models to realistic rain effects for the stadiums. Hopefully we’ll see some native 4K support for the game as well. 
From the limited look the company has given gamers, Pro Spirits 2024-25 really seems to be taking things to the next level visually. Not only that, but audio is also seeing improvements. Honestly, I don’t quite have the ear for some of these things, but the company is working hard to replicate stadium sounds depending on where the games take place. Crowds will sound different depending on where you play the game - i.e. playing in a dome versus playing in an outdoor stadium. You can actually check this out over on Konami's website for the game here

Of course, Konami has confirmed that this next generation baseball title will be available on both PlayStation 5 and PC via Steam. We do not know what kind of specs are necessary to play the game on PC, but from just the look of the game, we can tell that the game looks fantastic. Even with that said, Konami has not shied away from taking this series to systems with lower specs. We saw this in 2019 with the simultaneous PS4 and Vita release of the game and Pro Baseball Spirits 2021 Grand Slam exclusively on the Switch. At this point, if there were going to be a Switch version of the game, Konami would have said something by now. With the Switch successor likely arriving in 2025, I think that the company would be willing to put the game on that platform exclusively. At heart, Pro Baseball Spirits is about showcasing what Konami can do technologically. Of course, whatever Nintendo is working on will likely be a step back from the PS5, but I think not releasing the game on the Switch successor would be bit of a mistake. Sure, things like the Steam Deck are available in Japan, but handheld gaming (outside of mobile phones) is almost exclusively synonymous with Nintendo here. We’ll see, though.

Of course, more details for Pro Yakyū Spirits will be revealed over the next weeks and month leading up to the release of the game, but I just wanted to help everyone set their expectations accordingly. Some of this might be conjecture on my part, but most of what has been discussed here seems more likely than not. 

But let’s turn things over to you. Are you excited about this entry into the Pro Spirits series? Will you be picking it up? What platform? Sound off in the comments down below! We’d love to hear from you. 

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