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Next Level Gaming
Sean usually takes the helm when it comes to All Star Baseball, but this year I was so blown away by the game myself that I wanted to help him review the three versions out there. And so, a conversation struck! Think of it like Roger Ebert and his partner.
Once again in 2003, Acclaim has established themselves as the frontrunner in the overcrowded race to be the best in baseball video games. Even more competition has jumped into the fray this year, so it is becoming harder and harder for one title to stand out above the rest. All Star Baseball has consistently been at the top for the last two years, and its latest incarnation not only makes sure that this series stays at the top of the mountain, but it actually raises the bar and challenges itself to be bigger and better. Where it once held the crown because of nice graphics, deep game options and realistic gameplay, it has now added a plethora of features that will keep even the most hardcore baseball fan intrigued for months. All Star Baseball 2004 is as good as you are going to get with this year's crop of baseball titles.
All-Star Baseball 2004 boasts the most features of any baseball game currently available. The people at Acclaim Studios Austin have done an excellent job of ironing out many of the gameplay quirks that were evident in last year's game, but the most obvious selling point for this year's release is its variety of options. The sheer number of available teams, modes, and bonuses is absolutely staggering.
All Star Baseball 2004 is a solid baseball simulation and will appeal to all fans of the sport, and even fans of games of the sport. This year's version offers a whole host of improvements over last year's version. Thankfully you can now perform in-game saves, which means you can enjoy the game even if you have a limited amount of time to play. The franchise mode is particularly impressive and can be tailored to your liking. All in all it's a very good Baseball game.
For indecisive PS2 baseball fans, this might be a troublesome spring. There are plenty of ways to enjoy our national pastime, and for the first time I can remember, most of the titles are pretty good. New to the console is the long-awaited World Series 2K3 from Sega Sports and MLB 2004 from Sony's own 989 Sports. Add to that a completely revamped MVP 2003 from EA Sports and the deepest version yet of 3D0's High Heat Baseball and you can see why the baseball shelf at your local Electronics Boutique is more crowded than Barry Bonds' trophy case. Acclaim's All-Star Baseball has been around for a while and has consistently delivered, but can the aging franchise still bring the heat against the current lineup of baseball titles?
This has got to be the most competitive year for baseball games in the history of the market. Not only has 3DO already released the aging but valiant High Heat Baseball 2004 to a legion of adoring fans, but Sony, Sega, and Electronic Arts are fast on its heels with excellent offerings of their own. The next contender in a year of hardball greatness, however, is Acclaim Austin's returning favorite All-Star Baseball 2004. And while it's possible that this version could boast the most features of any title in the category this season, it shares quite a few threads with High Heat in the fact that it's beginning to reveal some geriatrics (though in an entirely different light than Double H).
Fortunately for us sports gaming fans, we’re in the middle of a really interesting year of baseball titles with new innovative features and improvements in various fronts. It’s beginning to become increasingly difficult to pick a title out of the lineup, but if it’s a game rich in baseball history you’re looking for then All-Star Baseball 2004 has what you’re looking for so batter up, diamond fans.
All-Star Baseball is a perennial fan favorite, and the home crowd will not be disappointed by this year?s entry either. All-Star Baseball 2004 fields a scrappy game of baseball that?s good enough to make it a contender in three divisions?PlayStation 2, GameCube, and Xbox.
All-Star Baseball 2004 is a game that I really wanted to like. It's got more extra features than any other baseball game out there this year. It's got some of the better commentary that I've heard in a baseball game this year. There are plenty of stats to be had. Creating an expansion team is very cool. The virtual tours are fun to watch. All of this is great, but what it all boils down to is the game of baseball and how it's played—and All-Star Baseball 2004 simply does not play as good a game of baseball as its competition does this year. If it was possible to mix the extras from All-Star Baseball 2004 and the gameplay from MVP Baseball 2003, this would be a baseball game for the ages.
Digital Entertainment News (den)
Some baseball games may offer online play, some may offer sharper graphics or more voice acting, but no game offers a deeper, more realistic simulation of Americaâ€™s oldest pastime. You'll be able to overlook the flaws thanks to generally excellent execution in what ASB 2004 does offer. Great stuff. If Acclaim can patch up the holes I point out in this review for next year, ASB 2005 has a chance to be next yearâ€™s perfect baseball game! In the meantime, this yearâ€™s version is still a must-have if you like your baseball sim-style.
This game is for those of you that love franchise modes, but not necessarily for a pick up and play game. The gameplay problems really hurt this game, especially from the defensive perspective. Overall this is a good game, but not a great one in the 2003 baseball battle.
Game Freaks 365
Combined with a good development team and bad ideas, All-Star Baseball is only an average game compared to MVP. Sure it may be the most realistic, but sometimes a game can be too real and that just doesn't work. You may enjoy this game for its features, but you won't play it long, if you play MVP soon there after.
As I mentioned before, I see the sheer amount of options and the difficulty (even on 'rookie' and with simple batting) putting the casual player off, and even with ASB2003's handy optional on-screen tips the game is likely to remain unfathomably American to some - But stick with it and learn the finer points (there's a lot of it on British TV at the mo) and Baseball is a truly great game. We found that ASB2003 really comes into its own when 2 (or more) players compete - the panicky errors in pitching, running and fielding that only a human opponent would make bring the game to life, and made it much more fun.
When all is said and done, All-Star Baseball 2004 is a solid game, with outstanding batting but sub-par fielding. It’s not the king of the diamond this year, but a solid game in every respect.
All Star Baseball 2004 est une simple mise à jour de l'édition 2003. Elle n'intéressera donc que les joueurs qui ne possèdent pas déjà la version de l'an passé. C'est-à-dire pas grand monde malheureusement.
Cheat Code Central
I'm going to step up to the plate right now and tell it like it is. All-Star Baseball 2004 is about as good as it's every going to get. I'm talking about the series and not comparing it to any other baseball games out there. The All-Star game is full of options, modes and all kinds of baseball nuances but it's built on the same old engine. If you're looking for some radical improvements, then I suggest you look elsewhere.
The Next Level
With all of the problems, you may be shocked to learn that I actually did enjoy the time I spent with ASB 2004. This is a solid but unpolished game of baseball with more than enough modes and options to keep any baseball fan busy for months. Hopefully, next year Acclaim will focus on ironing out the gameplay problems to bring that aspect up to par with the rest of the package.