RBI Baseball 20 Nintendo Switch Review

"Portable Park is Alright"


March 19, 2020 at 3:58am
By Jason Stettner

This is the latest entry in the rebooted RBI Baseball series that has been on the Nintendo Switch for a number of years now featuring some improvements this year as it moves closer towards a generally solid release for the platform. I thought last year’s entry on this console was alright, though it did have some performance issues and they’ve worked on making it smoother this time around.

There are a number of changes with this iteration, but largely the same experience as the year prior when it comes to content. You get a play now for quick matches. There’s Home Run Derby for a tournament style mode where you aim to get the most home runs. They have a franchise mode with ten seasons to play through and also post-season where you can work through the play-offs. That’s about the same modes as usual, with it being worth noting that franchise mode offers free agent usage and trades.

I would like to see more depth there in the future, or some level of personal customization. This version of the game does not feature online multiplayer, but it does offer local multiplayer. This also includes over 165 MLB Legends and Legend Teams as well as up to date rosters from the main league. This is an aspect I imagine might be impacted to some degree due to the virus situation currently going on.
RBI Baseball 20 Nintendo Switch cover


The big change-up this year are modern control options for both batting and pitching. I didn’t find the batting changes to be all that intriguing, though I did quite like the adjustments to the pitching mechanics. You can switch between the options and play however you’d like which is great. Pitching has neat choices for the style and I also liked the feedback system that you get when you’re batting or pitching. They did also add the option to dive for balls in the outfield which is a nice small addition for more control.

The base running controls have also been streamlined. In general, small adjustments to the mechanics which are nice to see integrated. Keep in mind that this is an arcade style of baseball so it’s more of a casual type of game control wise providing limited button options, that’s the goal for this type of experience. They’ve also slightly improved broadcast and animation elements here. When it comes to the crowds we once again get a 3D audience, but they look really rough on this platform. They’re like blobs, and it’s especially bad when you’re pitching. I’m not sure why there’s such a downgrade on this platform. There’s a lot of work to be done there.

Other smaller visuals have been upgraded such as unique hair styles and dirt elements when players interact with the field. They capture the atmosphere of the MLB, but there are some visual and performance issues. It looks about the same between undocked and docked situations. There are some rough jagged edges on the field and minor ones on the players. That being said, the player models do actually look sharp. I did also notice some performance issues in the outfield, but it’s far better than last year there. For music they have a fairly solid soundtrack from over twenty distinct artists.
RBI Baseball 20 Nintendo Switch Review Xbox Wallpaper Screenshot

The Conclusion

RBI Baseball 20 Nintendo Switch is a welcomed improvement over the previous year, capturing that arcade style of the sport and refining some elements of game. It doesn’t necessarily provide a vast upgrade over the last version, but it does improve on some elements and adds a bit more polish to the package.

There are a number of modes to play, but they have been largely untouched with this release. At some point it would be nice to have multiplayer included, and for them to add something new modes wise. The visuals are a step down from other platforms which is expected, I just wish they could get the performance in the outfield leveled out more. The new control elements were nice to see and it’s neat to be able to play this version on the go.

I just wish this would have added something when it comes to the content included, but I do appreciate the upgrades that are present within this year’s release. I feel they’ve really got the arcade action down, have what’s required league wise and just need to innovate on the experience further going forward.

Read our MLB The Show 20 Review
View our RBI Baseball Hub

RBI Baseball 20 Review on Nintendo Switch
Review Code Provided by HighWater Group

Rating Overall: 6.7

Gamerheadquarters Reviewer Jason Stettner