|Release date(s)||JPDecember 7, 1983|
NAOctober 18, 1985
EUSeptember 1, 1986
Baseball (ベースボール, Bēsubōru) is a video game developed by Nintendo, initially released in 1983 for the Famicom in Japan, and later one of the launch titles for the United States launch of the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1985. Due to this, Baseball is often seen as a key figure in the success of the NES. The American version changed the letters that represented six Japanese Central League teams to ones that were closer to six Major League Baseball teams; the Oakland Athletics (A), the St. Louis Cardinals (C), the Los Angeles Dodgers (D), the Philadelphia Phillies (P), the Kansas City Royals (R), and the New York Yankees (Y).
Baseball, as the name implies, is traditional Baseball playable on the NES, including each of its normal rules and regulations. The game begins with the first team pitching a ball to the other team, who is adjacent to the pitching player. The adjacent player, referred to as the "Batter", must swing their bat in order to strike the ball back. If successful, the pitching team will attempt to catch the ball, which denotes how many bases the batter can run to, gaining one point after running from three bases back to the home base. If the ball goes out of the park or reaches a certain distance, a Home Run occurs, and all players currently stationed on a base will automatically run to Home Base, gaining a substantial amount of points. Alternatively, if the batter fails to hit the ball, they will receive a strike, and if they gain three strikes, the batter is out of the game. When three batters are given outs, the teams switch roles, and the process repeats.
Since its release, Baseball has garnered mixed to positive reviews. IGN gave the game a 5.5 out of 10, noting that the game itself is "simulation", and while it is considered limited today, it was "robust" when first released, and also noted the game's emphasis on pitching controls but lack of fielding controls. However, its support of two-player gameplay as well as its "intact sense of fun" has given the game a redemption.
In a more critical review, GameSpot gave the game a 4.2 out of 10, criticizing its lack of fielding gameplay and statistical values.
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