Its my favorite time of year again. Its baseball season. Let the boys of summer out of their holes and put me back in mine. I’ve got some baseball games to play!
Well. The selection is getting smaller out there. Which keeps the quality higher, but I liked having many to choose from. However, not all of the baseball titles are availble yet.
Of course, none of this really matters. No matter how many baseball games we had in the past. The king of the virtual baseball diamond has been the same crowned jewel for the last six years. Of course I’m refering to Mike Piazza’s Strike Zone, No. Its EA’s Triple Play series. Since 1996’s Triple Play 97 on the PlayStation it has been the baseball game to beat. And year after year, however close some came, no one has yet to beat EA at their own game. Triple Play is so big now and EA is simply calling this years edition Triple Play Baseball. That’s right, no year. Sure, its fully updated, but Triple Play is so big it doesn’t need a year. Its good all year, any year. Okay, truthfully, I don’t know why the name change. But it sounded good.
Triple Play Baseball (2002) is available on both the original PlayStation and PlayStation 2. The PS2 edition is simply mind blowing. I poped it in and it popped my eyes out. The players look so amazing. I had to remind myself I was playing a game. The stadium’s are the most realistic to date.
Sega’s World Serires Baseball 2K1 looked like crap in comparison. The only flaw I found was the replays are repetitive. After a Homerun we see the same players reactions over and over. The cut scenes like that are a bit manaquin too.
The sound has changed a great deal for the PS2 edition. The classic EA sports announcers are gone and in Dusty Baker. The PS2 Edition also has a whole new pitcher/batter interface. Don’t panic, its easy and its great. They have added both pitching and batting cursors along with a visable strike zone. The fielding has also improved. One button power sensitive throws is interesting. Takes a little getting used to, but will revolutionize the game. EA has packed this one with an impressive sound track too. Hear tunes from Fastball, (only fitting) Utah Saints, Chuck D, and hear and see Vitamin C.
Triple Play Baseball (2002) for the original PlayStation is great as well, but a lot less revolutionary. In fact. It plays, looks, sounds, much more like the Triple Play games we’re all used to. Which is not a bad thing. It is still the best baseball game on PlayStation.
Triple Play Baseball was the first baseball title to hit the shelves for the PlayStation 2. I only had to play it once to know that this was the definative baseball game on PS2. High Heat and Acclaim’s All-Star returns to the PlayStation this baseball season too. But I do not expect either one of those titles to beat the reigning king of summer. You can be sure, that I’ll be back with reports on those titles in the near future.
PUBLISHER: EA SPORTS
PLAYSTATION / PLAYSTATION 2
GRAPHICS: 8 / 10
MUSIC & SOUND: 8.5 / 9.5
CONTROL: 7 / 9
SECRETS: 10 / 6
ORIGINALITY: 7 / 9
FUN & REPLAY: 10 / 10