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Three years ago, it seemed laughable to think Acclaim's upstart All-Star Baseball series would be able to match -- and even beat -- the Griffey series from Nintendo and the Triple Play series from EA, both venerable veterans of the videogame baseball world. Yet today, there is only one series left standing in the rubble: All-Star Baseball. While many baseball fans will be disappointed to find out that ASB 2001 plays very much like last year's version, there are enough small improvements once again to crown the ASB series as the best there is on the N64.
Go figure. On the system everyone counted out when it came to sports, Acclaim released the best console baseball title ever - All Star Baseball. Regardless of the lack of competition among N64 baseball titles, ASB proved that cartridge gaming did not preclude quality sports games. Not content to rest on their laurels, Acclaim and High Voltage are back this year with All Star Baseball 2001, and once again, it's not on the PlayStation or the Dreamcast but on the Nintendo 64.
Overall, ASB 2001 is still the standard when it comes to baseball on the N64. It's quite an accomplishment for Acclaim to have warded off EA Sports, Konami and even Nintendo itself in the baseball genre this year. High Voltage could've easily gotten away with rolling out the same game as last year but the effort they've put into ASB 2001 shows and it's worth it.
This is the best baseball game on Nintendo 64 and PlayStation that I've played so far. If you even have a remote interest in baseball is to pick up this game. If you like playing baseball but don't like watching this could still be up your alley. I didn't start watching baseball till just recently which inspired me to pick up this game and I'm glad I did. It's one of the most graphically impressive games on Nintendo 64, and while the audio could use a little work, the excellent gameplay, massive amounts of features, and decent replay more than make up for that.
Optisch konnte ASS 2001 unserer Meinung nach sogar noch ein klein wenig zulegen: alles wirkt einen Tick geschmeidiger und noch feiner aufgelöst als letztes Jahr. Soundtechnisch wäre allerdings einiges mehr drin gewesen. Das hat man nun davon, wenn man aus Kostengründen 256-Mbit-Module scheut. Wie dem auch sei, Freunde der Sportart, die die 2000er Version ausgelassen haben, greifen bedenkenlos zu, der Rest wartet geduldig auf die Baseball-Spiele der NextGen-Konsolen!
In the end, I've decided to let Acclaim off the hook for not doing much here. A big part of what we love about baseball is that things stay the same.
We are in the dying days of the N64. That is certainly reflected in the dwindling number of titles coming out on the platform. In fact, this is the only baseball title released for the 2000 baseball season. With no competition you would think that Acclaim could dump any product onto the market and it would be soaked up. But we lucky N64 owners can relish in the fact that even though this is the only baseball game in town, it is a good one.
For enthusiasts, I recommend All-Star Baseball. The stat tracking and fantasy options are phenomenal. Just let it be noted that this engine is starting to show its age. Nothing flashy this year - just a decent baseball simulation.
All Star's pace is slow, and games take too long to play. The commentator constantly refers to home plate as "the dish", which is about the most annoying expression I've ever heard. All Star Baseball 2001 is clearly a case of Acclaim "mailing it in", making this a highly questionable "upgrade" for owners of All Star Baseball 2000.