I’m usually not a fan of sports games in general, especially on mobile. There are many reasons for this. For starters, sports games usually take way too long to play and I don’t like being on my phone that long for games. I like games that can be played quickly because usually, I only have a few minutes of free time between doing whatever it is throughout the day. Second, I’m usually not fond of how the CPU “cheats” in sports games where it seems like they just can’t miss. However, I wanted to give BASEBALL 9 shot after seeing it in the Play Store because the graphics looked pretty good and the gameplay reminded me of RBI Baseball, which I loved on the original NES and probably my favorite baseball game of all time.
To start this off, the first thing that drew me to BASEBALL 9 was the art and graphic style. It has a very Japanese style look to it. By that I mean big heads and small bodies (chibi-style) with faces that look very Mii-like. I think this style works very well for the game, even more so that something that looks too realistic, mainly because I think it draws in more players and doesn’t seem as intimidating to look at.
While the game may seem like it wouldn’t be that realistic based on the graphics, the gameplay is actually very deep and requires quite a bit of skill. What I like about it that most of the game focuses on pitching and batting while fielding is mainly automatic. However you still need to choose which bases to throw the ball to. I like this approach because this is still a mobile game and let’s be honest, the most exciting parts of baseball is the pitching and hitting and I must say that it is very good.
Pitching requires that you choose the type of pitch you want and then as you throw it, you can move the little cursor around to control where the ball goes. It’s fairly intuitive and also simple to do on a touch screen. Hitting is pretty much the same way where you choose the type of hit you want to do, and you move the cursor to where the ball is going to hit it. You do have to tap the swing button, but you need to time when you tap it to hit the ball. It can be difficult at first so you just need to learn the timing. You’ll probably be a bit frustrated at first, but practice will make it better.
Aside from the gameplay, there are other parts to the game that is present in most free-to-play games. Mainly the earning of in-game currency, trading those in to recruit new players as well as upgrading current players. Of course, there are also in-app purchases with real currency, but not sure yet if it’s really necessary to do that. I’m mainly just playing the game for the hitting and pitching aspects.
Anyways, I know I said I usually don’t like sports games, but I do like BASEBALL 9. I like the pitching and hitting parts of the game and I think the game itself looks really good graphically. And while I did say I do not like lengthy games, at least BASEBALL 9 lets you stop playing at any moment and you can continue with the current 9-inning game when you come back, even if you close the app completely. You’re also able to have the CPU automatically “simulate” the game for you, which takes about a second. Winning and losing here is random so if you’re trying to win all the time, you may not want to do this. So with that said, BASEBALL 9 is actually pretty fun and I can play it at my own pace and leisure.