High Heat Baseball 2003
Genre Sport -> Sport
Today's Rank 0
Date N/A
Publisher 3DO
Date N/A
Publisher N/A
With its satisfyingly realistic gameplay firmly intact, this year's entry in 3DO's High Heat series cements its status as arguably the best video game baseball experience available. Graphically, it's better than ever, but what sets High Heat Major League Baseball 2003 apart from the competition is its attention to the little things that make it more believable and fun to play: hits that are random and rarely appear to fall in the same place twice; scores that accurately reflect the caliber of the opposing pitcher; razor-close plays on the base paths and at home plate--the list goes on. Add in wide-ranging, customizable player skill levels and game-tuning preferences (everything from batting and throwing power to error and injury frequency)--not to mention the year of fine-tuning under 3DO's belt after working out the kinks in last season's inaugural PS2 run--and it all adds up to a rewarding experience for baseball gaming purists. That's not to say the game is perfect, as witnessed by graphics that could still use some work to fully exploit the PS2's capabilities. Especially lacking are the dugout and crowd animations that at times resemble lifeless gray masses. Certain stadium skylines also lack depth, particularly in night games (tall buildings behind the stadiums look a lot like their blocky counterparts from last year's version). But these are minor gripes when all is said and done. All the vitals are still there: season, playoff, and exhibition modes (no franchise mode yet, however); home run derby; batting practice; and, new this year, the two-on-two showdown that features a one-inning battle pitting pitcher against batter. And while the game's rosters are nowhere near what they'll be on opening day, the create and edit player features will ensure that everybody's favorite team can be as accurate as the real thing. --Larry White Pros: Unparalleled gameplay realism Improved graphics Innovative two-on-two showdown Create and edit player features Cons: Graphics could still use work Scoreboards are not in real time Sometimes repetitive announcing
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