Field of Dreams


It’s been called America’s National Pastime. A game that turns grown men into innocent children. I love baseball. I have since I was a kid and that love continues to this day more than 25 years later. There’s something pure and magical about the game. As it’s been often quoted, “It’s hard not to get romantic about baseball.” Being that we’re now in the dog days of August and the final days of summer, it brings to mind an unforgettable baseball season my pals and I participated in 25 years ago. This article is dedicated to baseball and its fans all around the world.


OK maybe not so much a rise :P
OK maybe not so much a rise :P

In April of 1994 I found myself in the thick of 5th grade, and enjoying some of the best times of my young life. That year and that grade had it all. Best friend, check. Best teacher, check. Two cutest girls in the school in the same class, check. Life was pretty good. Just when I thought it couldn’t possibly get any better, it did. That spring the two 5th grade classes began a baseball tournament. Teams were evenly spread out so there would be a fair number of random boys and girls on each team. 8 teams in all. 8 games to be played. Top 4 teams advance to the playoffs.

To call it an exciting time would be an understatement. I was a pretty competitive kid, and so I couldn’t wait to get started and help lead my team into one of the top four positions. And luck be my lady, Jennifer (one of the aforementioned “two cutest girls”) was on my team. I wasn’t sure if Jennifer was any good at baseball, but at least she’d be easy on the eyes. Who knows, maybe we’ll get to bond sitting next to each other in the dugout, talking about whatever.

Watching and talking from the dugout. Good stuff
It promised to be a baseball season for the ages

At the time the possibilities seemed endless. It was classic 10 year old fever… the thrill of growing up while still remaining very much so innocent. The first order of business was to decide on a team name. We agreed upon THE BULLDOGS. Unoriginal, I know, but hey it was a proven classic.


I remember lunch that very same day. My best friend, Nelson, was on another team. That was about the only thing that didn’t go my way. Well, it wouldn’t hurt if the other cute girl was on my team too, but hey, you can’t get too greedy now, can ya? Anyway, Nelson was what you would call “big boned.” His team was indecisive and still hadn’t come up with a team name. I was sitting next to him in the cafeteria that afternoon when he suggested to his teammates, “How about the Orioles?” He was a fan of the Baltimore Orioles, or their team logo anyhow. Or, at least he liked the name anyway.

A fair play of homophones, good sir. Oh that Joshua....
A fair play of homophones, good sir. Oh that Joshua…

His teammate, and resident class clown Joshua, said jokingly “Oreo’s? Can you please stop thinking about food for ONE second?!” Everyone at the table cracked up. Nelson took it in stride. The great thing about the 5th grade classes that year was we all shared a common bond. We had a camaraderie that was truly special; after all, most of us had known each other since Kindergarten. And anyone who came into the fold after that was immediately taken in with arms wide open. So our ball busting jokes never carried any ill intent in the least. It was a bit like CHEERS to be honest. Everyone knew everyone’s name and a little (or a LOT) about one another.

The first game was set to be played next week. I remember hanging out with Nelson that weekend, talking excitedly about how we would both start out 1-0 (1 win and 0 losses). We were probably shooting the shit, playing SNES together, or off at the mall being carefree kids. Spring was in the air, Major League Baseball was just starting, summer was right around the corner… it was a great time to be 10 years old enjoying the simple pleasures of life.


Some folks just don't take losing too well
Some folks just don’t take losing too well…

The first game of the season came and went. The Bulldogs won 8 runs to 5. Herman, my friend and teammate, was even more competitive than me. I never met anyone so crazed about winning than Herman. Little did I know then that it was a major foreshadowing of events yet to come…

In contrast, Nelson’s team lost their first game. Imagine the bragging rights I had that afternoon!

Playing sports can teach you a lot about life itself. You learn about fair play, how to win (and lose) gracefully, how to work together with different teammates, and so forth. There was a real beauty to it, but especially when you came out on the winning end.


Things went south and fast
Things went south and fast

It’s amazing how quickly the tide can turn. We went from playoff darlings to the laughingstock of the league. The Bulldogs went on to set the school record for longest losing streak. We started out hot smelling like a rose, but it all went downhill from there. And no matter how hard we tried, or what we tried, we couldn’t stop the losses from mounting like a snowball rolling downhill.

At first we dropped game 2 and fell to an even 1-1 record. Ah no worries, we thought at the time. It was a close loss, but surely we’ll get ‘er next time!

But then it happened. The ship was sinking fast and so was team morale. The results of the next handful of games were not pretty. In fact, they were downright brutal. We were…

Slaughtered in game 3.
Bludgeoned in game 4.
Annihilated in game 5.
Crushed in game 6.

And then… Game 7 happened…

That’s when things really hit the fan…


There I was guarding the 3rd base line on a hot spring afternoon. As usual, we were down, but lo and behold, we were in the game. For the first time since game 2, we had a shot to win the game. It was in the later innings. We were only down by one run. But they loaded the bases with 2 outs. If we could just escape this inning unscathed, Herman and I would be batting the next half inning down only one. We could actually pull it off!

I pounded my fist into my glove, anticipating the play. The runner on 3rd base started chirping, talking trash, but it fell on deaf ears. The pitcher went into his wind-up motion. Here we go…


It sounded like a gunshot reverberating through the hills. The ball was smacked into center field where Herman was fielding. Like everyone else, including the base runners, I stood there and watched with eyes and mouth wide open. Herman was streaking back as fast as his legs could take him… he had a chance to make the CATCH OF THE CENTURY.

We all watched the ball sail....
We all watched the ball sail high…
Herman streaking back...
Herman streaking back…
And what a catch! Well, I wish
And what a catch! Well, I wish…
Herman reached out and...
It felt as if time had froze for all eternity

As Herman made a diving attempt for the baseball, I watched in horror as it sailed JUST PAST his outstretched glove. The runners were off immediately. I heard a sickening THUD as Herman’s body pounded the grass like a car falling off the Empire State Building. It was a class-A belly flop. Amazingly, Herman got up immediately. But even more mind blowing was what took place next…


As the runners rounded past me on 3rd base I saw something I’d never forget.

Herman retrieved the baseball and stopped dead in his tracks. Jojo from left field screamed “THROW IT HOME THROW IT HOME!” The commotion caused the runners to actually stop running to see what the hell was going on.

Then, it happened.


Instead of throwing the ball toward home plate, Herman turned around and let out an animalistic cry as he threw the ball as far as he could into center field. I tracked the ball as it sailed high in the blue sky. A sky so blue that afternoon that it hurt my eyes just squinting at it. Herman stormed off the field in a fit of blind rage, leaving everyone speechless. Not to mention the ball 300 feet away from all of us. It was one of those moments that spoke for itself. A moment none of us would ever forget.

Once again, the Bulldogs lost. But this was more than a mere loss; this was a total meltdown. Made me glad there was only one game left in the season.



We were a pathetic 1 and 6. The worst team in the tourney by a country mile. Although the season was a wash, we all agreed we had to try and salvage what we could. Ending the season with a win would ease the pain. No one on my team had talked to Herman since game 7’s ugly incident. None of us knew where his head was at. Speculation ran rampant. Until Herman finally shattered the silence.

In the dugout prior to the final game of the season, Herman issued a heartfelt apology. Said he lost his cool in the heat of the moment. We understood. We also knew we were now playing for a little thing called PRIDE. The Bulldogs, win or lose, were going to go down swinging… together.

We played loose, we laughed, we rallied
We played loose, we laughed, we rallied

Jojo started the wave at some point in the dugout. It was a great time. And believe it or not, the Bulldogs won the final game of the regular season. We started and finished the season with a win. In-between? Lots of devastating losses but they only served as an invaluable lesson: how to lose gracefully and bounce back from adversity. Baseball taught us far more than what we could have learned in the classroom. For that reason alone, and ever since that fateful day, I have always loved the game of baseball.

I can’t remember which four teams advanced to the playoffs or who even won it all in the championship game. But what I do remember is that the Bulldogs finished an unimpressive 2 and 6, but underneath that horrible record, lied a team that truly felt like winners in the end.


My favorite film of all time
My favorite film of all time

June 2001. I’d just graduated from high school and spent that summer working at Blockbuster Video with my good friend Eddie and the “high school slut.” Interesting times they were. See Memories of Renting for more on those halcyon days.

One night I was closing up and made my usual last minute DVD run. As an employee I received 5 free rentals a week, and never failed to take advantage of such luxuries.

As I scanned the aisles for my late evening entertainment, Field of Dreams caught my eye. I had heard over the years what an awesome movie it was but I had yet to see it. Memories of the epic 5th grade baseball tournament came rushing back to me. Kevin Costner seemed to wink at me from the DVD box. Looks like a date, good sir.

Soundtrack was absolutely stellar, and haunting
Off to the races!

With stunning cinematography and a stellar soundtrack that absolutely haunts and mesmerizes, Field of Dreams easily became my #1 favorite film of all time. More than just a baseball movie, it’s actually about life, second chances and father-son relationships. There’s also a touch of the supernatural thrown in for good measure. Everyone was perfectly cast. It’s just a damn near perfect movie.

No film gives me more goosebumps than this one
No film gives me more goosebumps than this one
One of my favorite shots in cinematic history
One of my favorite shots in cinematic history


One early evening out in the stalks of Iowa, simple farmer and family man Ray Kinsella hears “The Voice” for the first time. This spooky voice simply tells him “IF YOU BUILD IT, HE WILL COME.” Ray is understandably disturbed, and begins a wild journey to get to the bottom of things. Was this a mere hallucination, a simple prank or… something of the supernatural sort?

And so begins a magical yarn of adventure
And so begins a magical yarn of adventure

Ray decides to pursue the Voice’s wish, tears down a good portion of his live crops and builds a baseball field smack dab in the middle of his farm. The locals think Ray has finally gone over the deep end. Only his incredibly loving and supportive wife, Annie Kinsella, stood behind him. But even then, she had her moments of struggle. Who goes and builds a baseball field in the middle of their farm!? Nutcases, that’s who, and now her husband, Ray Kinsella. But was Ray a looney, or was he on to something here…


No doubt the field was gorgeous, and a hell of a sight with the corn swaying in the wind in the outfield. But as the seasons passed, nobody came as the Voice promised that it would. Ray and Annie grow impatient, and restless, as they saw their income from the crops dwindle due to the baseball field eating up their real estate. Times were starting to grow lean, and the looming danger of the bank foreclosing became an ever increasing burden on the Kinsellas.


And then it happened. One cold night, Ray looked out his bedroom window and spotted a haunting figure standing in the middle of his baseball field. It appeared to be an old timey ball player from 1919. But this was 70 years later, 1989. What in the world is going on here??


The ghastly visitor turned out to be Shoeless Joe Jackson, who played for the Chicago White Sox back in the early 1900s. Long dead, Ray realized there truly were supernatural forces at play here. Ray Liotta absolutely shined as Shoeless Joe, stealing every scene he was in.


The Kinsellas couldn’t believe it. The baseball field that was eating into their precious earnings, was finally serving a purpose. What that purpose was, they had no idea. But after their encounter with the night phantom, they knew they had to keep the baseball field erected to see what cosmic forces may yet occur.


It wasn’t long until Ray received a second message from the Voice: “EASE HIS PAIN.” Of course, the Voice doesn’t offer explanations or clarifications. This sets in motion the next beat of the film, as Ray researches whose pain it was he had to ease. This leads the Kinsellas to a PTA meeting discussing the merits of censorship and book banning.

As an aside, the pictures above and below were taken at a Field of Dreams screening this past June. It was the film’s 30th anniversary. I had the honor of seeing it for the very first time on the big screen :)


Over the course of the PTA meeting, Ray realizes whose pain he had to ease. Terence Mann, a great author of his time, who is now a recluse. Fun fact, W.P. Kinsella based this character in his book Shoeless Joe off real life author, J.D. Salinger. Another fun fact: Ray Kinsella is the name of a character from a short story J.D. Salinger wrote entitled A Young Girl In 1941 With No Waist At All. There was also a character named Richard Kinsella that appeared in The Catcher in the Rye.

Love love LOVE this book
Love love LOVE this book
So stoked when I ran across it in a book store!
So stoked when I ran across it in a book store!

This leads Ray to make a cross country trek to track down the reclusive Terence Mann. Shenanigans and hi-jinx ensues, including a classic scene where Ray uses his finger to poke his jacket pocket to stand in as a gun in an attempt to persuade Mann to leave the fine comforts of his sanctuary.


After “kidnapping” Terence Mann, played by the impeccable James Earl Jones, Ray Kinsella takes him to a ball game. The setup for this is classic, classic stuff. Costner and Jones shine in their roles, and their back-and-forth banter is both charming and wildly entertaining. Once situated at Fenway Park, Ray hears his next message from the Voice: “GO THE DISTANCE.” But what in the hell does that mean, go where and how far?


Thankfully, the Voice offered a little more insight this time as a special message is displayed over the giant screen that only Ray Kinsella can see. Apparently, the Voice was talking about an old ball player by the name of Archibald Graham, or Moonlight Graham as he was known in his day. Moonlight Graham was a real life ball player who played only one game in the Majors, but had 0 at-bats. It is certainly a unique and fascinating story of almost achieving one’s dreams but not quite. After jotting down the information on his scorecard, Ray asks Mann if he heard or saw anything. Mann says no, and Ray apologizes. “I’m sorry, I guess you didn’t have to be here.” Confused and relieved yet disappointed, the two leave the game early.


As they sit in Ray’s Volkswagen van, Terence Man asks Ray Kinsella, “What’s it you’re not telling me?” Ray replies, “I’ve already taken up too much of your time.” Mann stares quizzically at Ray for a moment before exiting the vehicle. Closing the door behind him and draping his jacket and arms over the side, Mann spits out some reflective prose. “I wish I had your passion, Ray. Misdirected though it might be, it is still a passion. I used to feel that way about things but…” His voice trails off as he ponders his current life state and how he got to be the way he got to be. Then it hits him.

“You got another message, didn’t you?”

“You’ll think I’m crazy.”

“I already think you’re crazy. What did it say?”

Mulling over whether to tell him the truth or not, Ray decides to tell a white lie. “It said the man’s done enough. Leave him alone.”

And thus, the two fellows shake hands and Ray pulls his Volkswagen van away from the curb and into that cold Boston night…

"MOONLIGHT GRAHAM!" Instant goosebumps
“MOONLIGHT GRAHAM!” Instant goosebumps

Ray is stunned when he finds Terence Mann blocking his path. Even more stunned to hear Mann utter the name “MOONLIGHT GRAHAM.” Looking at Mann bewildered, Ray shouts “YOU SAW IT!!!” This turns Field of Dreams into a road trip movie. They’re heading to Minnesota to find Moonlight Graham. Good stuff.


Mann heads to Iowa alongside Ray Kinsella, and there he encounters the field of dreams for himself. He is instantly transformed from a social recluse to a grinning 10 year old boy as he watches his heroes of yesteryear play an evening game of baseball.

Mann can't believe his eyes
Mann can’t believe his eyes


Who could ever forget the classic climax where James Earl Jones launches into a soliloquy like only he can. Pontificating on the importance of baseball and how it’s been a marker for American history throughout the ages, you can’t help but feel drawn to his passion and convictions. Even if you’re not a baseball fan, in that very moment you suddenly are. And that’s the true mark of a magical movie.



The ending, where Ray is reunited with his father (who’s long passed), never fails to tug at the strings of my heart. “Hey dad… want to have a catch?” has got to be cinema’s most emotional 7 words ever spoken. Truly the stuff that reduces grown men to crocodile tears.


“Is this Heaven?”

“No, it’s Iowa.”

But then Ray glances back to his house, spotting his wife and daughter hanging out on the porch having a grand old time. He ponders the question again. Maybe this IS Heaven after all…


Ray and his dad have a game of catch late into the night as the camera pans overhead and we see thousands of cars in bumper-to-bumper traffic coming to the ballpark.




In college I minored in Theatre Arts and for my Final, I had to perform a monologue. Naturally, I selected James Earl Jones’ baseball speech from Field of Dreams. Had a blast reenacting it and putting my own spin on it. Fun times.








Not a hoax or prank... it's truly happening!
Not a hoax or prank… it’s happening!

Announced earlier today (August 8, 2019), Major League Baseball announced that the Yankees and White Sox will play an actual regular season game at the famous Field of Dreams ballpark in Iowa. This monumental event will take place on August 13, 2020. I wish I could go but tickets will be limited and through the roof. I’ll definitely have a front row seat in my living room, though, and will be plenty satisfied with that!

"Aaron Judge... COMES TO IOWA." Not the same effect as Shoeless Joe but I'll take it
“Aaron Judge… COMES TO IOWA.”
Not the same effect as Shoeless Joe but I’ll take it



Looking back on my times spent with the sport of baseball, I cherish all the great memories it has given me along with all the great lessons it’s taught me. Summer is quickly coming to an end as Major League Baseball hurtles its way to the Fall Classic. The game may not be as popular today as it was when I was a kid growing up, but I hope the kids playing baseball today take away from the game as much as I did 25 years ago.

Even got a poster of the film :P
Even got a poster of the film :P
Long live baseball and dreams
Long live baseball and long live dreams

Super Bases Loaded 2 (SNES)

Pub: Jaleco | Dev: Tose | February 1994 | 12 MEGS
Pub: Jaleco | Dev: TOSE | February 1994 | 12 MEGS

Here at RVGFanatic I relish the opportunity to talk about my favorite SNES games. In particular, I love shining the spotlight on those obscure games that flew under the radar. There are many Super Nintendo games that one could classify as such, but here’s one that is criminally overlooked. It’s so far below the radar that it honestly blows my mind. On the other hand, being a sports game it kind of automatically slips through the cracks. 16-bit sports games aren’t everyone’s cup of tea. But I’ve always loved a well made one, and Super Bases Loaded 2 certainly is that. I’m going on the record to calling this the second best baseball game on the SNES, only trailing the epochal Ken Griffey Jr. Presents Major League Baseball. Obviously, if you don’t care for 16-bit baseball titles, this may not sway you in any way. But for everyone else, read on and more importantly, play the game yourself and see if it doesn’t become a favorite of yours as well.



Last night Major League Baseball put on its 88th annual All-Star Game.

APTOPIX All Star Game Baseball

Robinson Cano hit the go ahead home run to put the American League up 2-1 over the National League in 10 innings.


Baseball has a funny way of repeating history in the most bizarre of ways.

July 11, 1967: Tony Perez hits an extra innings homer to lift the NL past the AL in the All-Star Game by the score of 2-1 in Anaheim.

July 11, 2017: Robinson Cano hits an extra innings homer to lift the AL past the NL in the All-Star Game by the score of 2-1 in Miami.

Not a single extra innings home run in-between those 50 years. Not only that but before Tuesday night’s All-Star Game in Miami, baseball put together a ceremony to honor the game’s Latin American history. Eight Latin-born Hall of Famers threw out first pitches to eight Latin-born All-Stars.

In one group? Tony Perez. In the other group? Robinson Cano. Yup, only in baseball. It’s no wonder so many diehard fans have the same mentality: “It’s hard NOT to get romantic about baseball.”


With summer currently in full swing, I decided it was time to start a 162-game season. Normally I play Ken Griffey but this time I decided to pull a different baseball title off my shelf. Over a decade ago I remember playing Super Bases Loaded 2 briefly and thinking that it was pretty enjoyable. I decided to give it a more thorough look and ended up having an absolute blast with it. Let’s see why it’s one of the most underrated sports games on the entire Super Nintendo.



Bases Loaded originated on the 8-bit Nintendo. It went on to have three sequels on the NES. The series was immensely popular, selling more than five million copies worldwide.

Bases Loaded
Bases Loaded
Bases Loaded 2
Bases Loaded 2
Bases Loaded 3
Bases Loaded 3
Bases Loaded 4
Bases Loaded 4

The series naturally moved to the SNES.

Super Bases Loaded
Super Bases Loaded
Super Bases Loaded 2
Super Bases Loaded 2
Super Bases Loaded 3
Super Bases Loaded 3

Neat little fact #1: Many people associate Jaleco with the Bases Loaded series but it’s actually TOSE who developed all of these games. Jaleco picked up the publishing rights.

Neat little fact #2: Super Bases Loaded 2 is the only game in the series not originally intended to be part of the series. TOSE developed Super Professional Baseball 2 (the actual sequel to Super Bases Loaded) in August 1992. They then developed a stand alone baseball game, Super 3D Baseball, in October of 1993. Jaleco decided to publish Super 3D Baseball here in the States as Super Bases Loaded 2. Interesting that they skipped over Super Professional Baseball 2. This explains the drastic shift in style and look for Super Bases Loaded 2.







Jaleco made the right call to port Super 3D Baseball rather than Super Professional Baseball 2.








Customize the game as you see fit: it is very player-friendly. The first Super Bases Loaded suffered from not having a battery backed memory. This game fixes that. Although the players aren’t real nor the teams, it’s still fun to play.







Select from 18 teams. I personally enjoy using the L.A. Cyclops. Four teams are customizable but more on that later.







Choose from three different stadiums to play in. I wish each team had its own field but the three here all play differently. This one is the biggest and is good for triples galore. Also has the tallest wall of the three.







Standard park with all your modern amenities.







Classic ball park with the shortest distance to straight away center field.



Set your batting order carefully. Players do vary in terms of ability to hit base hits, home runs, swipe bags, throwing power, etc. Unfortunately, there’s no way to discern this other than trial and error. The stats do help sometimes, but it would have been nice to see a rundown exactly. This is my preferred lineup. The green icons indicate players who feel locked in for that particular game. On the flip side, the orange-yellow icon shows players who aren’t feeling so hot. This doesn’t mean they still can’t perform well, but their odds go down. It’s an interesting system that Extra Innings also had.







Players charge the field. It’s a nice little touch.













Speaking of nice touches, I like how batters receive a quick statistical rundown. It’s a classic, clean look that I really dig. You can check your swing and sometimes this leads to cheap infield singles. Nice!







Jaleco proudly declared on the back of the box that this was the first SNES baseball game to employ the DSP chip. Obviously it’s not really 3D but there’s something charming about the way this game looks. Better yet, you can actually steal bases like a thief in the night.













Power of the DSP chip allows the camera to track the baseball in a “3D fashion.” It’s quite smooth and although it’s not the fastest baseball game around, it works well. Nothing beats seeing the ball land just fair. Cyclops go up 1-0 early.

























Simon crushes the baseball to right field for a two run jack! It’s pretty cool being able to track the ball for those massive home run swats.



















Defense is a make or break aspect of a baseball game. I’m happy to say the defense in Super Bases Loaded 2 is AWESOME. You almost always feel in control and while the infielders move a bit slowly, diving stops work great and it feels so good to gun out a base runner. Most baseball games render themselves instantly obsolete due to poor defense. This one does not!



















Seeing the ball pop off the bat is so satisfying. Is this another home run shot? Nope. Close but no cigar. No matter, it still brings home a run. L.A. Cyclops go up 4-0 on the Boston Kings. Gotta love the fake names. It’s charming in its own way.







Stretching a double into a triple is the best.







Getting beaned, however, not so much. Sometimes the hit batter will even charge the mound and “beat up” the pitcher. No joke. First time I saw that I marked out!













Hitting line drive doubles just inside the foul line is immensely gratifying.













Adding insult to injury is the dribbler that sneaks through the infield for another RBI hit. The camera really lets you see the ball getting pounded into the dirt as it travels just past the defenders. Sweet!

























Perhaps nothing is more demoralizing to the opposition than seeing the ball land in-between two defenders (“No Man’s Land”) and roll all the way to the fence as opposing base runners madly dash around the bases. Oh man does it feel good to do this. On the flip side, it’s crushing to be on the receiving end.



















Unlike many baseball games from that era, it’s actually possible to score on sacrifice flies. Players’ speed and arm strength in this game feel almost “just right” for the most part. I love scoring on sac flies! It also doesn’t ruin the batter’s batting average, just like in real life. Good stuff.













Flashing off some leather! Like I said, the defense in this game is pretty top-notch. You’ll be stealing away base hits from the opponent like a demon. I also like how the outfield switches seamlessly to a more traditional look.













Another sick home run shot. If I had turned on the slaughter rule, this game would have already been over. But there’s no slaughter rule in the pros and I got to get my stats… ;)







Leaping catches are sick. But oh, the agony of letting one through the cracks.













Aggressive base running from the Kings. Down 11-0, they’ve got nothing to lose.







Nothing beats a diving save over the third base chalk line that leads to gunning out the runner at first. So damn satisfying!













Robbing would be base hits is so smooth and natural in this game.







Seriously, this is an awesome baseball game! So underrated.













WOW… FAIR BY A HAIR! It’s such a helpless feeling for the defender as he chases after the ball.







Baseball, like football, can often times be a game of inches. Being on the offensive side of this is a great feeling. Not so much on the defensive side.



















Simon once again terrorizes the Boston Kings, smacking a 2 run double in the gap. The L.A. Cyclops have now scored 3 touchdowns and gone up 21-1. Damn. By the way, you gotta love how the game shows you how each batter performed in his previous at-bats. Especially when a guy has a multi-hit game. Fill up that stat sheet!







Another solid single that barely sneaks past the defenders into right field. It’s so fun tracking your hits since the perspective doesn’t switch until you hit the outfield.













Suicide squeeze up 22-1? I’m definitely getting beaned next time! But check out how you can lower your bunt if you so choose. You can swing or bunt high, normal or low in this game. It all adds to the variety and options.







Gonna be a close play at the plate… SAFE! 26-1, 25 run lead. DAMN.



















Computer’s defense is definitely not the smartest. 2 outs and instead of throwing to first base for the sure 3rd out, he throws it to second base. SAFE. The second baseman then flings it to first but he’s a half second late. SAFE. Bases loaded for a crack at a Grand Slam and 30 runs…







Patton steps up to the plate having had a monster day. A single, two doubles and a home run already in the books, could he go 5 for 7 with a Grand Slam to boot? Uh oh… look at that swing! Look at that ball fly… could it be?!



















HOLY SHIT Patton did it! The ball stays just fair to give Patton a Grand Slam and a monster game for the ages. The L.A. Cyclops are spanking the Boston Kings 30-1!

























Computer, allow me to show you how a real double play is turned! Double plays are the best especially the diving ones. Double plays are a pitcher’s best friend after all. One last out to get…



















Another sick diving save at 3rd base. It never gets old.

Sheer, utter whuppage
Holy crap — 30 hits and 30 runs!








Hitting a ball fair or foul is one of those “OHH!” moments for sure. Whether you’re pumping your fist or cursing your lot in life, it certainly elicits that “OHH!” feeling.







Nothing beats seeing a ball land just fair and roll all the way to the wall! Well, if you’re on offense, anyhow.








Speaking of the umps, they always get the final say. That won’t stop your 1st base coach however from signaling safe even when the runner is called out. It’s little stuff like this that helps make a game more endearing to me.








Players will sometimes “shrink and grow” on the infield. It doesn’t really affect gameplay but it’s a notable quirk. Hey, the DSP chip wasn’t perfect.








Super Bases Loaded 2 allows you to design up to four teams. You can change their player names — this could potentially lead to some juvenile antics but thankfully there’s none of the sort here. [Right -Ed.]. Players are rated in different categories and you can set the number ratings however you wish. You can create the ultimate team of players with 8’s across the board, or the worst team possible with all 1’s. Or you can make them all 4’s, or mix and match. It’s pretty cool.

Speed makes all the difference...
Speed makes all the difference…



As mentioned earlier I recently wrapped up a 162-game season. I finished 154-8 for a whopping 95% winning percentage. Won the Omega League by 70+ games! I averaged about 3.75 runs a game and over 2 stolen bases a game.


I freely admit I am a sucker for round numbers. I would hate to end a season with a .299 batting average, 29 home runs, 99 RBIs and 39 stolen bases…


Thankfully Patton was having none of that.


I had three guys in the top 10 for home runs: Baker (36), Patton (32) and Simon (28). Bonner also had 23 so technically he should have been the 4th guy in the top 10.


I had four guys in the top 10 for RBIs: Patton (113), Simon (103), Baker (91) and Bonner (77). I was a little peeved that I couldn’t get 9 more RBIs with Baker to give him an even 100.


I had nine guys in the top 10 for stolen bases! I really love how you can steal bases in this game. Leigh was a beast leading the way with 69 steals.


That Cooper guy on Philly is pretty good!


Damn, Ryan 80 wins and Willis 76 saves!

Unfortunately, I couldn’t take pictures of my final regular season stats. After Game 162, you’re taken to the World Series and the stats reset for post season play. Therefore I couldn’t take pictures but I did write down the stats. I will show the “normal” stats for each L.A. batter below. The caption will reveal the stats I had with that player during the 162-game season.

.224 BA, 5 HR, 37 RBI, 65 SB
.224 BA, 5 HR, 37 RBI, 65 SB
.249 BA, 18 HR, 66 RBI, 69 SB
.249 BA, 18 HR, 66 RBI, 69 SB
.309 BA, 32 HR, 113 RBI, 47 SB
.309 BA, 32 HR, 113 RBI, 47 SB
.311 BA, 28 HR, 103 RBI, 21 SB
.311 BA, 28 HR, 103 RBI, 21 SB
.259 BA, 36 HR, 91 RBI, 21 SB
.259 BA, 36 HR, 91 RBI, 21 SB
.282 BA, 23 HR, 77 RBI, 22 SB
.282 BA, 23 HR, 77 RBI, 22 SB
.225 BA, 3 HR, 35 RBI, 24 SB
.225 BA, 3 HR, 35 RBI, 24 SB
.210 BA, 4 HR, 33 RBI, 41 SB
.210 BA, 4 HR, 33 RBI, 41 SB
.221 BA, 1 HR, 30 RBI, 26 SB
.221 BA, 1 HR, 30 RBI, 26 SB
I clinched the Omega League after 119 games
I clinched the Omega League after 119 games
Boston took me to 7 games. Props to them
Boston took me to 7 games. Props to them
You damn right!
You damn right!



Sadly, there was never much hub-bub about Super Bases Loaded 2. I remember a one page preview in EGM in early 1994 that caught my eye. The graphics for the time were unique and didn’t look like any other 16-bit baseball title. I ended up buying a copy in 2006 after experiencing my SNES resurrection. I remember playing it very briefly and thinking it was pretty fun, but I stored it away. Earlier this summer I finally decided to pick it up and play again. What started as a few games turned into a full 162-game season! Maybe if more people played it there would be some more positive chatter about this highly underrated game.

Sports fans, don't miss this!
Baseball fans, don’t miss this!



I’m so glad I finally sat down to play this game thoroughly. It’s now become one of my favorite Super Nintendo games, especially as far as sports games go. There’s just something about it that feels so right. The graphics aren’t the greatest but it has that classic retro baseball look to it. If I were to close my eyes and think of a 16-bit baseball game, my mind would probably think of a screenshot from a game like Super Bases Loaded 2. And I love that camera system. It’s the only SNES baseball game I know where hitting the ball doesn’t automatically switch the camera. If you smack it into the infield the camera simply zooms back and you never miss a beat on making a defensive stop. Speaking of which, defense for the most part feels natural and smooth. There are a few mishaps here and there, though. Namely, the infielders can feel like they’re slightly in mud every once in a while. But you get used to the speed pretty soon. Since we’re on the topic of speed, this is a big one for baseball games. You know how sometimes runners run too fast or too slow? Or the defenders’ arms are too strong or too weak? This seems to be that rare 16-bit baseball game that almost gets it right. Players aren’t lightning fast nor are they slow as turtles. Arms aren’t super strong yet the ball never bounces to home plate from the outfield 11 freaking times! Best of all, pace of play. You can finish a 9 inning game in about 15 minutes. That makes games fast-paced and fun.


Some may complain about the lack of teams, real names, real players, lack of stadiums and lack of in-game music. I actually don’t mind the fake players in this case. I find the game’s 14 teams (18 if you count the four custom teams) strangely endearing. I like discovering each team’s best and worst players. Besides, there’s plenty of other baseball games on the SNES if I have a hankering to play as Mo Vaughn or Cecil Fielder. Super Bases Loaded 2 is unique. In fact, the bats have a metal sound to them despite clearly being wooden bats. It all adds to this quirky charming alternate baseball universe atmosphere. It’s not Japan. It’s not college. It’s not even AAA. It’s just… Super Bases Loaded 2. There is no in-game music but this is not necessarily a bad thing. I find it strangely calming to play a game with little music for a change. Besides, there were many evenings earlier this summer where I threw this game on for an hour and knocked out four games while listening to a podcast (without having to turn down the TV volume). It worked quite well! There are nice rally themes that play throughout based on the situation but they’re short (and actually not bad while they last). As for the three stadiums, at least they vary in look and size. Not a deal breaker for me.


The bottom line is this game rocks. Seriously. I’ve played more than my share of baseball games. There are a lot of fair to middling baseball games on the SNES. Then there are some truly awful ones. And then you have good ones. This is definitely one of the good ones. It’s a lot of fun to play, it’s fast to play and it just feels like baseball done right. It’s not perfect, but it’s a lot better than you may initially think. It’s a shame this game is as overlooked and obscure as it is. My hope is this review sways you to give Super Bases Loaded 2 a crack, especially those of you who don’t mind playing a (well made) 16-bit sports game. And hey, being summer time presently, what better time to give it a try than now?

Graphics: 8
Sound: 7
Gameplay: 9
Longevity: 9

Award4Overall: 9.0
Gold Award


See ya at the ball park!
See ya at the ball park!

Super Baseball 2020 (SNES)

Pub: Tradewest | Dev: Monolith | July 1993 | 12 MEGS
Pub: Tradewest | Dev: Monolith | July 1993 | 12 MEGS

Super Baseball 2020 was originally released in the arcades back in late 1991 as part of the Neo Geo lineup. It was later ported to the SNES in the summer of 1993. It’s crazy that we’re only two and a half years away from 2020! When I first saw the arcade cab in ’91 I remember thinking to myself that 2020 would never get here. Indeed, at the time it was nearly 30 years away. 30 years to a kid is an eternity. Yet here we are. On the brink of 2020. That blows my mind. Looks like we won’t have super robots playing baseball a couple years from now, though. But hey, you can always simulate that with Super Baseball 2020!


Gotta have giant scrolling letters. It was the 16-bit era!
Gotta have giant scrolling letters in the 16-bit era
Love that classic SNES controller
Love that classic SNES controller








Baseball rules and regulations have drastically changed by the year 2020. Now the emphasis is on a larger fair playing field, making action quicker and more exciting. The foul zone’s been reduced to strictly behind the catcher. As a result, one can score hits all over the field!








Upgrade your robotic players to super soldiers of destruction. Money is earned based on positive plays. Similarly, money is lost on negative plays. Adds a bit of depth and strategy to the old baseball formula.

Super Baseball 2020, sponsored by Pete Rose
Super Baseball 2020, sponsored by Pete Rose








Exceptional outs are highlighted by cutscenes, just like in the arcade!







Check out the timing on this one. The ball should sail off those fancy blue glass plates for a single or double, but alas…


Some robots are faster than others
Some robots are faster than others


















Leap over 20 feet into the air to rob would be HRs
Leap over 20 feet in the air to rob home runs


Home runs are delegated to dead center
Home runs are delegated to dead center

One of the best things about this game is no doubt those futuristic looking blue glass plates that cover the audience. More than cosmetic, balls that are hit on the glass plates are considered in play! This leads to what I like to call “Wall Ball.” Nothing beats smacking a ball so hard that it rolls down several planes of glass, allowing you to stretch singles into doubles or even triples!

JUST foul! D'oh
JUST foul! D’oh

Balls to the wall fun... [You're fired -Ed.]
Balls to the wall fun… [You’re fired -Ed.]
Wall Ball is a hoot. It’s even better when you have runners on base. Balls hammered to the far reaches of the stadium bounce slowly off the glass as your men round the bases.

They remind me of Lego's blue plates...
They remind me of Lego’s blue plates…
The nostalgia!
The nostalgia!

Who didn’t love Lego back in the day? In addition to the huge bases and fortresses you could lose yourself in for hours on end, I was always fascinated by the color glass plates. Playing Super Baseball 2020 takes me back to those innocent childhood days playing with my favorite Lego sets. One of my favorites was the Metro PD Station. The glass windows resemble those of Super Baseball 2020 so much.


Seasons are 15 games long, not 162
Seasons are 15 games long, not 162
The real Mega Powers
The real Mega Powers

The password feature is a bummer. Baseball games of this era mostly used a battery backup memory. Thankfully, seasons are only 15 games long. It makes the password tracking a bit more bearable. Also, the 12 character passwords aren’t the worst in the world. Not ideal, but not a deal breaker.


There are 12 teams in all
There are 12 teams in all
Total: 22 points
Total points: 22



Total: 26 points
Total points: 26



Total points: 23
Total points: 23



Total points: 24
Total points: 24



Total points: 29
Total points: 29



Total points: 22
Total points: 22



Ninja Black Sox? Best baseball team name ever
Ninja Black Sox? Best baseball team name ever
Total points: 20
Total points: 20



Total points: 22
Total points: 22



Total points: 28
Total points: 28



Total points: 25
Total points: 25



Total points: 24
Total points: 24



Total points: 29
Total points: 29



Lowest team in terms of total points: Aussie Battlers (20). Highest team in terms of total points: Taiwan Mega Powers and Tropical Girls (29). The Tropical Girls and the Battle Angels are the two all-female teams. I love that each team has its own pros and cons.







Overwork your players and robots will falter and break down. Once they explode, they become extremely ineffective. As soon as they show signs of wearing down, you’d do well to replace them.

Well that an easy decision to go with Lu...
Well that was an easy decision to go with Lu…
Tonight's exciting match-up
Tonight’s exciting match-up
Blatant Mode 7 up the wazoo
Blatant Mode 7 up the wazoo

All games in the year 2020 are played exclusively in the Cyber Egg Stadium. Gone are unique team stadiums and home field advantage. It’s a bit of a shame but the Cyber Egg Stadium is so cool that it almost makes you forget about there being only one ballpark to play in. Almost.

Looks fairly close to the Neo Geo original
Looks fairly close to the Neo Geo original
It's HIGH... but FOUL!
It’s HIGH… but FOUL!
The audience looks great
The audience looks great
"It's at the 10... the 20... it could... GO ALL THE WAY!"
“It’s at the 10… the 20… it could… GO ALL THE WAY!”

Apparently, even in the year 2020 some things never change. Seems like in the off-season the Cyber Egg Stadium also acts as a football stadium. Oakland A’s and Oakland Raiders, I’m looking at you.

Home runs only count when hit to dead center
Home runs only count when hit to dead center









HURRY, get in position! Now jump! *CLUNK* D’OH!




Trash talking while all this is going on is half the fun!
Trash talkin’ while all this is going on is half the fun!







Replace your pitcher, fielders, base runners or hitter with a robot off the bench, or upgrade if you have the cash.

Be a shame to ruin its brand new shiny exterior...
Be a shame to ruin its brand new shiny exterior…



Bases loaded make it even sweeter
Bases loaded make it even sweeter
Check out how long this ball will roll for...
Check out how long this ball will roll for…
Not stopping for the first row...
Not stopping for the first row…
... nor the third row...
… nor the third row…
This unique feature alone makes this a blast to play
Get those Pokemon Ball looking runners home!

After being crushed way to the top of the upper deck, it finally lands somewhere on the 8th glass plane and begins to bounce off several on the way down. Meanwhile the runners are circling the bases like mad ants and the opposition can’t do a DAMN thing about it but wait and curse. This unique feature alone makes Super Baseball 2020 a blast to play with a friend.

6-0 and STILL bouncing!
6-0 and STILL bouncing!
7-0 and STILL no end in sight. Crazy!
7-0 and STILL no end in sight. Crazy!

It cannot be overstated how much fun comes from the trash talking that ensues in moments such as this. My brother and I had a riot taunting each other while playing this game. Having only one stadium for all 12 teams is a bit of a bummer but like I said, when the one stadium is as cool as the Cyber Egg Stadium, it’s a lot easier to overlook.

Another unique aspect: STOP signs in the field
It could help or hurt you. It all depends…







Instead of the typical 7th inning stretch, in the year 2020 the 7th inning means only one thing: the WILD CARD INNING. This is where both teams receive a major boost of added power. Because you know, baseball and steroids have never been linked together before. Things tend to get a little nutty in the 7th…



[Sure ya did -Ed.]
[Sure ya did -Ed.]
Fireworks down 9-2? You're better than that...
Fireworks down 9-2? You’re better than that…



I played a 15 game season with the Mega Powers and was neck and neck with the all-female team, the Battle Angels. The most epic game of the season came in Game #13 which saw my Mega Powers (10-2) going up against the Battle Angels (10-2). I was up 6-4 going to the bottom of the 9th, but the Angels scratched back to tie it at 6 a piece. I ended up surviving a barn burner 7-6 after 13 innings and five (!) dead robots. It was one of those epic games you never forget. I finished the season 13-2 and went on to defeat the special team in the Championship game.


  • No tagging back. If you attempt to advance on an outfield out, there’s no turning back. I guess the robots were programmed with this flaw and no one caught it during quality assurance.
  • No way to change the batting order or fielders.
  • Zero individual stat tracking.
  • You can’t run to the next base until the other runner passes it. This becomes glaringly annoying when you have a fast robot trailing a pair of robots that would make Bernie Sanders look like Deion Sanders.
  • Fielding is about 75% automatic. The other 25% of the time it’s not as smooth and well executed as the baseball game that set the standard for defensive fielding, Ken Griffey Jr. Presents Major League Baseball.



The SNES port of Super Baseball 2020 was well received for the most part. GameFan gave it ratings of 70, 76, 80 and 82%. Super Play rated it 85%. The SNES port did an admirable job replicating what made the arcade game such a fan favorite. Appealing even to non baseball fans, Super Baseball 2020 brings a refreshing new take on America’s favorite pastime.


One of the best Neo Geo to SNES conversions out there
I love me some good old 16-bit baseball! :)

It was quite the thrill seeing this childhood favorite of mine at a retro gaming store back in 2006. Seeing Super Baseball 2020 in the wild brought back a flood of fond memories of playing the Neo Geo cab at Safeway as well as renting the SNES port. Being that the game takes place in the year 2020, there’s a neat little futuristic feel to the whole game. This includes the robotic players, the sleek looking blue glass planes that cover the entire Cyber Egg Stadium, and the interesting financial aspects that bring a new dimension of strategy and know-how to the old baseball formula. Put together, it all works rather well. I can’t stress how fun it is to play this game against a like-minded friend or sibling. OK so there are only 12 teams, only one stadium and too many players look alike, but the fun factor covers a multitude of sins.


Is it the pinnacle of baseball games? No. It’s certainly not without its flaws (as noted earlier), but you simply won’t find another baseball title like this on your 16-bit Super Nintendo. Any time a game can put itself in a “special class” of its own and is fun to play, that game is going to earn bonus points with me. Nothing beats hitting those scorching wall ball hits. The best ones are the rare hits where the ball doesn’t bounce but roll slowly down the glass planes. These hits can lead to inside the park home runs but are extremely rare, which makes it all the more satisfying when it does happen. Aside from the missing bombs, speech samples and some frames of animation, this is a faithful translation of the arcade smash hit. The graphics are big and colorful. There’s a certain solid simplicity to the visuals. The sound is nothing to write home about, but not anything I hated. This is just a fun little baseball game. It doesn’t come close to touching the epochal Ken Griffey Jr. Presents Major League Baseball, but for a decent alternative with a neat futuristic ambiance and quirks you just won’t find elsewhere, Super Baseball 2020 smashes a solid double in the bottom of the 9th.

Graphics: 8
Sound: 6
Gameplay: 7.5
Longevity: 8

AwardOverall: 7.5
Bronze Award



Tecmo Super Baseball (SNES)

Pub & Dev: Tecmo | September 1994 | 12 MEGS
Pub & Dev: Tecmo | September 1994 | 12 MEGS

Today, June 20, officially marks the first day of summer (2017). Summer always reminds me of hot dogs, fireworks, SNES games (see The Summer of Imports) and of course, baseball. Although basketball is my favorite sport, baseball has always been my first love. There is something very romantic about the sport of baseball. Tecmo has been well known for their sports games. Tecmo Super NBA Basketball and Tecmo Super Bowl spring to mind. Tecmo Super Baseball was a game I wanted to play back in the day but never did until recently. I’m happy to say Tecmo did not disappoint. This just might be my second favorite baseball game on the SNES… trailing only the almighty Ken Griffey Jr. Presents Major League Baseball. So kick your feet up, grab your peanuts and Cracker Jack and let’s head to the ballpark.








Officially licensed by MLBPA (Major League Baseball Players Association) but not sponsored or endorsed by MLB (Major League Baseball). What this means is you get real pro players but not actual teams. Not a deal breaker by any means. Welcome back, Tecmo Bunny.







Atlanta, not Atlanta Braves. No team names here, just the city. I like the portraits of the players scrolling across the title screen. The menu is classic Tecmo. By the way, it must be said, hell of a “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” rendition here!













Speaking of Atlanta, they had an amazing starting staff that year of 1993. Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, John Smoltz and Steve Avery combined to win 75 (!) games. Love how each pitcher in this game has a specialty pitch.







Select from all 28 MLB teams at that time. The two Super Stars teams are the All-Star teams, but Tecmo couldn’t secure the rights to the official titles. You can adjust the positioning of your defense to your heart’s content.







Barry Bonds is the best offensive player in the game. Look at those ratings — almost every category is maxed out! This was before steroids. I love how the game rates each player’s abilities as well as show their stats from the 1993 season. Definitely appeals to the hardcore player.







Tecmo Super Baseball allows for two perspectives. Hit select to switch between the two. Personally, I love the pitcher’s view. You can actually see curveballs and changeups move up and down. Pitchers have the option of four pitches. The highlighted one is their specialty pitch. Batters have four choices as well. I use normal most of the time but I like to use power for the big boppers.













Playing view on the defensive side takes a little while to get used to. Most baseball games from that era used the opposite view. Center field is typically north but here home plate is north. Tecmo even called it “The Flying Camera.”

No seriously, they did!
No seriously, they did!


























Beautiful seeing the ball dip like such!







Markers help indicate where the ball will land.













National League “Super Stars” go up 1-0. But wait a second here, is that fool seriously trying to make it to third base? OH HELL NO!



















Rickey Henderson you ain’t, SUCKA!



















Leave it to Ken Griffey Jr. to quickly respond. Home runs are accompanied by a quick popping sound effect. Unfortunately “The Flying Camera” doesn’t show the ball landing in the bleachers. The American League “Super Stars” go up 2-1.



















American League showing that it can play small ball just as well as the National League. Crisp single followed by a well executed bunt. OOH! That elbow is going to be sore in the morning…













Baseball games from that era tended to suffer from the lack of ability to score from second base on a single. However, Tecmo Super Baseball actually allows you to score in such situations! It’s my favorite thing about this game.



















Nobody will ever accuse this game of having excellent CPU AI. Notice that the third baseman didn’t wait to tag out at the runner at third — in a non bases loaded situation he needed to tag him. To compound the error, he throws it home a smidgen too late. If the third baseman had simply tag my guy out, it would be end of the inning 2-1. Instead, it’s 3-1 with a runner on third. D’oh.













Sacrifice flies were tough to do in many baseball games from this era. It’s the same here. Unless you throw to a bad base. In this case I was trying to gun out the runner from first, but he got back well in time. Sadly for me, the runner from third is taking advantage of my own stupidity…













Although the AI is pretty bad generally speaking, it will seize opportunities should you present them.

























Trying to sneak another run across, eh? I don’t think so.







Cutting off a ball from rolling toward the gap with a diving save is sick.













Another diving save… d’oh! It slid under my glove and rolls all the way to the wall. Baseball can truly be a game of inches…













Scoring from first base on a double was also pretty rare for a baseball game from this era. But you can do that here, just like you see in the Major Leagues. It makes playing Tecmo Super Baseball extra fun when the scoring mirrors that of real life.













Another diving save? Nope, BOTCHED! Son of a bitch!

























Should have been satisfied with runners on first and second. Foolishly he tried to get to third base but promptly got denied. [Story of your life! -Ed.]

























Double play is a pitcher’s best friend. Love the animation of the second baseman leaping to avoid contact with the incoming runner. It’s just like it is in real life.







Check up on your pitcher’s current abilities. It actually shows how diminished your pitcher is currently compared to their original ratings. LOVE THIS! Hard to believe strikeout king Randy Johnson has 0 strikeouts thus far. Well, he quickly rectified that :)

Don't f*ck with Randy Johnson
Don’t f*ck with Randy Johnson








Tecmo Super Baseball even allows you to switch up the rosters to a certain degree. Want your favorite ball player, Lee Tinsley, to play with the All-Stars? Done!


























Unlike many other baseball titles from that era, you can actually score from second base on a single. However, it’s not always guaranteed (as it should be… it’s the same way in real life baseball). It depends on the type of single you hit as well as the jump your runner gets and his speed. Here you see Wade Boggs, not known for his foot speed, getting gunned out at home plate.







Boggs’ speed is about average or slightly below. Belle, on the other hand, is above average. Let’s see the difference below.

























Albert Belle beats the throw by a decent margin — speed matters! Scoring from second base on a single is one of my favorite things about playing Tecmo Super Baseball. Most baseball games you can’t score from second on a single. But you can here!








Tecmo Super Baseball is far from perfect, however. There is only one stance for all the players. The only difference is whether they bat left or right handed, and whether they’re white or African American. Speaking of one, there’s only one ballpark in the entire game. A bit of a downer to say the least since ballparks are one of the unique and beautiful things about baseball. Basketball courts look relatively the same from team to team, but baseball is the one sport where each field has its own special, unique look. Maybe not all 28 parks but would it have killed you Tecmo to give us at least 3?








What’s going on in that first pic there? Talk about giving new meaning to the term “getting to third base” … even though he’s sliding home. [And that second picture says it all about your humor -Ed.]. Hey, you win some, you lose some.

[Story of your life... -Ed.]
So much for getting to third base


No "Flying Camera" here
No “Flying Camera” here

The Genesis version lacks the innovative “Flying Camera.” Instead it uses the standard baseball view from that era. I personally prefer the SNES version. Here’s an ad that Nintendo themselves ran in gaming magazines back in 1994.

Shots fired by Nintendo
Shots fired by Nintendo


Tecmo Super Baseball had me at this ad
Tecmo Super Baseball had me at this ad

I remember seeing this ad in EGM June of 1994 and being absolutely intrigued. First of all, Tecmo has always made solid to great sports games. And secondly, the ad simply captures that time frame for me. It perfectly depicts a lazy hot summer night in the suburbs of AnyTown, USA. And the feeling of kicking back in your favorite La-Z-Boy to enjoy a good old 16-bit baseball game. The ad got me super hyped to play the game. Hell, the house in the ad even looked exactly like my childhood home! Sadly I never got to play it when it first came out. Such is the joy, then, of being able to finally play all these old games you never did 20+ years ago. In some ways it’s the closest we’ll ever get to a time machine.

Good stuff, Tecmo
Good stuff, Tecmo


This page is seared into my memory bank
This page is seared into my memory bank

The critics loved Tecmo Super Baseball. In particular, GameFan used to have a GameFan Sports section to their issues. This “cover page” is forever burned into my retina. I just love the way they repeated the image of the goofy looking Tecmo slugger. There’s a pseudo-Garbage Pail Kids aesthetic to it all. EGM gave it ratings of 85 and 89%. GameFan rated it 94%. GameFan reviewer Talko called it the best SNES baseball game. Personally, I disagree — Ken Griffey Jr. Presents Major League Baseball is number one in my book, but Tecmo Super Baseball is easily in my top 5.

Mighty praise from Talko!
Mighty praise from Talko!



Tecmo Super Baseball gets my stamp of approval. Talko said it best. It blends simulation with a quick arcade style that makes playing it rather fun. Games are quick and fast. Best of all is the ability to score from second base on a single and from first base on a double. Very few baseball games from that era did that. The hitting is simple and the fielding is generally very smooth. A couple negatives, however. Every outfielder throws the ball like a bullet, despite varying defensive ratings. It’s pretty much impossible to score on a sacrifice fly. As mentioned earlier, all player stances are identical. Diving is not as smooth and natural feeling as in other baseball games. There’s also only one ballpark and the computer AI is terrible. Then again, most baseball games from the ’90s had awful AI. But these are minor quips. The game delivers otherwise.

Nice try, pal
Nice try, pal

The graphics are a bit lackluster. The crowd is indistinguishable. The one ballpark doesn’t have much of a personality to it and the players don’t differ in size whatsoever. But who plays sports games in particular for its visuals? I love the sound in the game, particularly the “Take Me Out To The Ball Game” rendition. The announcer adds a nice touch. The gameplay is what makes this game. Nothing beats seeing the 12 to 6 Uncle Charlie curveball. It actually dips if you play using the pitcher’s perspective (which is my recommendation). On the offensive side, you can select whether you want to bat using power, contact, normal or bunt. It adds to the variety of what you can do. If you’re a baseball fan and you still enjoy playing the Super Nintendo then I can’t recommend Tecmo Super Baseball enough.

Graphics: 5
Sound: 8.5
Gameplay: 8
Longevity: 8

AwardsOverall: 8.0
Silver Award

Perfectly captures the summer of 1994 for me!
Ahh… lazy 16-bit summer nights in the suburbs :D

What a great rendition :)

Happy first day of summer!