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You know, the hardware was a different story, but when it came to software...the Game Gear
had one clear advantage over the Game Boy. And that was sports games. Back in 1992, there
wasn't a better handheld baseball game...than The Majors Pro Baseball, for the Game Gear.
And that game, led to a series. The World Series, actually.
It's World Series Baseball '95.
You can't throw a pitch like that to Griffey.
So technically, this was the second of SEGA's World Series Baseball games. But if you've
played The Majors, you can see where this game really got started. This is basically
just an improved version of The Majors. The gameplay, the setup, the style...the two games
are virtually identical. It's just that this one tries to fix some of that one's problems.
And in some ways, it does.
In other ways, it creates new ones.
So, if you haven't played The Majors...think RBI Baseball. Because that's pretty much the
template at work here. This is a classically styled retro baseball game, and it plays like
you would expect. Which is to say, it plays awesome. I really miss these kind of sports
games. Today, they focus so much on...realism, and modes...they kinda forget to be fun.
There's nothing about these kind of baseball games that isn't fun.
Seriously, I could play this...all freaking day.
So you swing simply by pressing a button, and it's all about timing and placement. You
want to line up your bat with the pitch as best as you can. Really simple, really fun.
And pitching has the same kind of simplicity. You can essentially steer your pitch with
the d-pad, and you're trying to miss the bat. Again, if you've played Baseball Stars, or
RBI Baseball...this is a lot like those games. They weren't broken, so World Series Baseball
'95 doesn't try to fix them.
What it does try to fix...is The Majors, for the Game Gear.
That's where it leaves some runners stranded.
So one of the only problems with The Majors...was fielding. The physics of the ball and the
general speed of the game made playing defense really hard. And next to impossible, at times.
In this game, you don't have to worry about that. In fact, you don't have to worry about
playing defense, at all, because the game does it for you. For any ball hit in the air,
your fielders automatically run to the ball and make the play on their own.
Which, in theory, is fine. In practice...not as fine.
See, this auto-fielding thing turns the game from, "Oh, the fielding kind of sucks, a lot
of balls are dropping into play"...to, "Holy sh*t, these guys catch everything, we're never
gonna score again." It seems, like...90 percent of the balls hit into play are just caught.
And sometimes in spectacular fashion. And since your runners take off automatically,
because they're terrible baseball players...that means you get doubled-up quite a bit.
Through no fault of your own.
All you did was hit the ball hard, with runners on base. You idiot.
Now, you can turn this option off. The drawback, then, is that you have to play defense. Which
still isn't that great in this game. It's still the weakest part of World Series Baseball
'95. But to the game's credit, it does pack in a lot more content, which was another issue
with The Majors. You get the entire league this time, with all the players and teams.
And you also have a lot more gameplay options than The Majors, which is another improvement.
It's actually kind of crazy. You can do a full season, it saves your stats, it gives
out regular season awards...again, pretty impressive stuff for a handheld baseball game
I don't want to say this game is better than The Majors. I mean, in some ways, it is...but
there's also some flaws that hold it back a bit. But like its predecessors, this was
just another awesome baseball game for the Game Gear. Huge thanks to Doug from Lomita,
California for the Game Gear goodness. Solid graphics, solid music and sound, solid gameplay.
It's World Series Baseball '95.
Solid contact all around.