The Diamond Mind Baseball game window sets aside an area for displaying an image of the ballpark in which the game is being played.
When version 10 began shipping in June 2010, we included image files for all of the parks that were in use during the 2010 season plus a number of historical parks, for a total of 126 images. Since then, we have developed park images for new and renovated stadiums. Those new images are available as free downloads using the links on this page and can be used with either version 11 or version 10 of Diamond Mind Baseball.
The role of image files in the game
Diamond Mind Baseball contains a database of ballpark information that is used to ensure that realistic results are achieved for games played in each park. How does this information relate to the image files?
Each of our season disks includes detailed information about each park, including the distance and height of the walls at seven outfield locations, the prevailing weather patterns, and statistical park factors that govern how often left- and right-handed batters hit singles, doubles, triples and homers in that park. To maintain the highest levels of realism and statistical accuracy, DMB always uses this park information when determining what happens during games played in that park.
We've also created images for all of the parks used in the past 25 years plus some parks from further back in time. Those images are drawn to scale to match the information in the database, and they are included to help you feel like you're at the park. But the images themselves are not used by the game to determine the outcome of any play. If you substitute another image, one that does not match the information in the database, it will make no difference.
If an image file is not available for a given ballpark, you will still get realistic results for games in that park based on the park information in the database. But DMB will display a generic park image in place of the actual one for that stadium.
How image files are distributed
We distribute park images as part of the game (rather than as part of our season disks) and through our web site.
Each image file is about 100 - 200 KB in size. Because these files are in JPEG format, they are very attractive and highly compressed. A bitmap file of the same image requires over 1MB of disk space. Because the JPEG format is highly compressed, it's not possible to compress the files any further when we package them for shipment to customers.
In this case, at least in our opinion, size matters. A modern season disk would contain 32 park images (30 parks plus the generic ones). That several megabytes of park image files that would need to be distributed with every season disk we ship. That's not a problem if we're shipping on a CD, but it's a big problem for customers who request email delivery, many of whom have limits on the size of the attached files they can receive.
If the parks changed every year, it might make sense to ship the images with every season disk anyway. But they don't, and it doesn't make sense to ship 30 new images with each season disk when most customers already have 90% of those images installed.
Each time we release a new version of Diamond Mind Baseball, we include any new park images that we have developed. That way, when you install the game (or an upgrade), you'll get our complete library of image files, and you won't need to visit our web site to download any new ones. Between game releases, however, we'll use the web site to distribute any new image files that are needed by our season disks.
The price is right
Some of you know that many game companies charge extra for color images of ballparks. But even though we're spending good money to have a professional artist prepare these images, we're not charging for them. Using the web site to distribute these images files is one way to keep our costs under control so that we can continue to maintain this policy.
- Tags: About The Game
- Jim Wheeler