Baseball Analytics

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Play Retro Baseball Video Games In Your Browser!

The Internet Archive hosts nearly 50 classic baseball video games. Available through the magic of emulation, most of the games can be played via keyboard, mouse or joystick / gamepad controller through any current browser. Spanning the first 25 years of retro-gaming goodness on multiple platforms and featuring the gamut of text-based simulations, arcade/sim hybrids and pure arcade action, please enjoy the ensuing catalog of hardball hits and misses!!

If the Internet Archive does not host a particular game, I attempted to include details and a screenshot. In keeping with the retro theme I restricted the list to 1975 – 2000 in correlation with the first through fifth generation of video game consoles (Nintendo 64, Sega Saturn, Sony Playstation).

Personal Recollections

Our family’s first console was the Mattel Intellivision, which we received as a Christmas gift in 1981. In comparison to the other baseball games available in the early Eighties, Major League Baseball outshined the competition in graphics and gameplay. Unfortunately we did not buy the Intellivoice or the Entertainment Computer System add-ons required for Eddie Dombrower and Don Daglow’s innovative World Series Major League Baseball, which included various camera angles and actual player statistics.

My first personal computer, the Commodore 64, raised the bar in terms of graphics and sound along with the ability to edit team rosters and compile statistics.  We often played Star League Baseball and Hardball! for strictly arcade action, yet I found myself gravitating towards the statistics-based games such as Computer Baseball and especially MicroLeague Baseball. My friends and I created a league using the “General Manager / Owners” and “Box Score / Stats Compiler” disks. I started to tinker with the existing rosters to create All-Time Teams for every franchise. But the absence of a quick-play option and the unreliability of the Commodore floppy drives, not to mention our short attention spans, thwarted my efforts to complete a full season of simulated contests.

I acquired an Apple ][e during the mid-80’s and procured several ballgames: the old standbys along with Computer Statis Pro Baseball and APBA Major League Baseball. Visiting the homes of family, friends and classmates during this period, I experienced the diversity of personal computers covering Apple ][, Atari 400/800 and Commodore Vic-20 / 64 / 128. Our collective minds were stunned when we located a peer with an Amiga 500 and the next Daglow / Dombrower collaboration – Earl Weaver Baseball. Having recently purchased EWB for my Apple ][e, the Amiga version blew me away! Construct your own ballparks, edit the pronunciation of player names and receive in-game managerial advice from Earl?!  All other games fell by the wayside that summer as we spent endless hours with Amiga EWB. In many ways, this gem of a game remains unsurpassed in terms of scope and gameplay even though it was released over thirty years ago.

The Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) and Sega Genesis provided our family and friends with tons of classic gaming amusement! The repetitive background tune from Baseball Simulator 1.000 remains forever embedded in my brain while the physics involved in launching a long ball in the “space” stadium boosted the replay factor. My brother and I competed for supremacy in Sports Talk Baseball – loved the digitized speech in that one!

In the early Nineties, I obtained the first of several IBM PC clones, occasionally re-visiting my Apple and Commodore systems but mainly focusing on a new series of baseball games developed by the two individuals who repeatedly strived to implement improvements in the hybrid arcade/sim baseball genre. Electronic Arts published Eddie Dombrower’s Earl Weaver Baseball II, featuring enhanced physics modeling and a virtual camera that allowed the user to view the game from almost any perspective within the ballpark. Regrettably, EA released EWB II prematurely and compounded their mistake by failing to publish a patch to resolve several flaws in the code. Following successful stints as a director and producer with Mattel, Electronic Arts and Broderbund, Don Daglow founded his own company, Stormfront Studios in 1988. The Tony LaRussa Baseball series sustained the EWB tradition of working closely with the product’s namesake to design the artificial intelligence behind the game engine. Further enhancements comprised of the “fly ball cursor” (to assist with tracking and catching balls hit in the air), Fantasy Draft mode, head-to-head statistics, and a quick-play option to let gamers simulate an entire season in minutes! Old Time Baseball repurposed the TLB engine, added historical statistics and ballparks, and featured the Baseball Time Machine which permitted gamers to simulate games in different eras by altering the context where each player’s results were initially generated to align within the selected timeframe.

APBA Presents Baseball for Windows and the later editions of Broadcast Blast featured Ernie Harwell announcing the play-by-play accounts. (Mel Allen and Curt Gowdy highlighted the broadcasters in the Tony LaRussa games while Al Michaels’ voice adorned the later Hardball releases.) Augmenting the APBA games with The Bill James Baseball Encyclopedia, I possessed a method to import players from any season from 1876 to 1994. I started collecting “classic” video games around 1996, culminating in the purchase of two upright arcade games: Galaga and World Series: The Season. I pumped tons of quarters into WS:TS as a teenager and jumped at the chance to play as many innings as I wanted on “free-play”! The game retains your statistics based on your initials and birthdate and the spring-loaded batting and pitching system provided pinpoint control in the batter’s box and on the mound. Always a rush to crank a long ball in this blast from the past!

Wrapping up my baseball gaming experiences in the Twentieth Century, I found enjoyment in the arcade aspects of High Heat Baseball and the World Series Baseball games for the Sega Saturn. I dabbled in Diamond Mind Baseball for a while but found myself returning to APBA BBW. I presently run my sim seasons with Digital Diamond Baseball or Out of the Park Baseball. Both games are extremely flexible, provide accurate replay outcomes and contain all of the qualities that I have come to expect in a computer hardball simulator.

Your Memories

Please submit comments regarding your favorite baseball games (arcade, console, computer, handheld, tabletop) – whatever you play, share your memories with fellow gamers!

Poll

Vote on your favorite baseball video games here!

 

Platform Title Year Publisher Play It Now
Amiga Earl Weaver Baseball 1987 Electronic Arts
Amiga MicroLeague Baseball: Manager’s Challenge 1992 MLSA
Amiga TV Sports Baseball 1992 Mindscape
APF M-1000 Baseball 1978 APF
Apple ][ Computer Baseball 1981 SSI
Apple ][ Computer Statis Pro Baseball 1983 Avalon Hill
Apple ][ Star League Baseball 1983 Gamestar
Apple ][ MicroLeague Baseball 1984 MLSA
Apple ][ HardBall! 1985 Accolade
Apple ][ APBA Major League Baseball 1985 Random House
Apple ][ Baseball Fanatic Performing Arts Software
Apple ][ Championship Baseball 1986 Gamestar/Activision
Arcade Baseball: The Season II 1987 Cinematronics
Arcade Champion Baseball 1983 Sega
Arcade Super Champion Baseball 1989 SNK
Arcade World Series: The Season 1985 Cinematronics
Atari 2600 Home Run 1978 Atari
Atari 2600 Pete Rose Baseball 1988 Absolute Entertainment
Atari 2600 RealSports Baseball 1982 Atari
Atari 2600 Super Challenge Baseball 1982 Mattel
Atari 5200 RealSports Baseball 1983 Atari
Atari 7800 Pete Rose Baseball 1989 Absolute Entertainment
Atari 7800 RealSports Baseball 1988 Atari
Atari 800 MicroLeague Baseball 1984 MLSA
Atari Lynx Baseball Heroes 1992 Atari
Bally Astrocade Tornado Baseball 1977 Bally Midway
Colecovision Super Action Baseball 1983 Coleco
Commodore 64 Full Count Baseball 1987 Lance Haffner Games
Commodore 64 Grand Slam Baseball – Steve Garvey vs. Jose Canseco 1987 Cosmi
Commodore 64 Monday Morning Manager 1986 TK Computer Products
Commodore 64 Pure Stat Baseball 1986 Sublogic
Commodore 64 The Slugger 1986 Mastertronic
Commodore 64 Tony LaRussa’s Ultimate Baseball 1991 SSI
Emerson Arcadia 2001 Baseball 1982 Emerson Radio Corp
Fairchild Channel F Baseball 1977 Fairchild
Mattel Intellivision Major League Baseball 1980 Mattel / APh
Mattel Intellivision World Championship Baseball 1986 Mattel / INTV
Mattel Intellivision World Series Major League Baseball 1983 Mattel
MS-DOS Bo Jackson Baseball 1991 Data East
MS-DOS Diamond Mind Baseball 1995 Diamond Mind
MS-DOS Earl Weaver Baseball 1.5 1987 Electronic Arts
MS-DOS Earl Weaver Baseball 2 1991 Electronic Arts
MS-DOS ESPN Baseball Tonight 1994 Sony Imagesoft
MS-DOS Front Page Sports: Baseball ‘94 1994 Sierra On-Line
MS-DOS Hardball II 1989 Accolade
MS-DOS Hardball III 1992 Accolade
MS-DOS Hardball 4 1994 Accolade
MS-DOS Hardball 5 1995 Accolade
MS-DOS Major League Manager 1986 Spinnaker Software
MS-DOS MicroLeague Baseball 2 1989 MLSA
MS-DOS MicroLeague Baseball 4 1992 MLSA
MS-DOS Old Time Baseball 1995 Stormfront Studios
MS-DOS Orel Hershiser’s Strike Zone 1989 Melbourne House
MS-DOS Out of the Park Baseball 1999 Out of the Park Developments
MS-DOS Pro League Baseball 1992 Interplay
MS-DOS Pursue the Pennant Pursue the Pennant
MS-DOS Radio Baseball 1986 Electronic Arts
MS-DOS RBI Baseball 2 1991 Domark Software
MS-DOS Sporting News Baseball 1988 Epyx
MS-DOS Strat-o-Matic Baseball Strat-o-Matic
MS-DOS Street Sports Baseball 1987 Epyx
MS-DOS Tony LaRussa Baseball II 1993 SSI
MS-DOS Tony LaRussa Baseball 3 1995 Stormfront Studios
MS-DOS Tony LaRussa Baseball 4 1997 Maxis
MS-DOS World’s Greatest Baseball Game 1984 Epyx
Magnavox Odyssey 2 Baseball! 1980 Magnavox
Neo Geo Baseball Stars Professional 1991 SNK
Nintendo NES Bad News Baseball 1990 Tecmo
Nintendo NES Baseball 1985 Nintendo
Nintendo NES Baseball Simulator 1.000 1990 Culture Brain
Nintendo NES Baseball Stars 1989 SNK
Nintendo NES Baseball Stars II 1992 Romstar
Nintendo NES Bases Loaded 1988 Jaleco
Nintendo NES Bases Loaded 2: Second Season 1990 Jaleco
Nintendo NES Bases Loaded 3 1991 Jaleco
Nintendo NES Bases Loaded 4 1993 Jaleco
Nintendo NES Base Wars 1991 Konami
Nintendo NES Legends of the Diamond: The Baseball Championship Game 1992 Bandai
Nintendo NES Little League Baseball: Championship Series 1990 SNK
Nintendo NES Major League Baseball 1988 LJN
Nintendo NES RBI Baseball 1988 Tengen
Nintendo NES Tecmo Baseball 1989 Tecmo
Nintendo SNES Extra Innings 1992 Sony Imagesoft
Nintendo SNES Ken Griffey, Jr. Presents Major League Baseball 1994 Nintendo
Nintendo SNES Ken Griffey Jr.’s Winning Run 1996 Nintendo
Nintendo SNES Nolan Ryan’s Baseball 1992 Romstar
Nintendo SNES Relief Pitcher 1994 Left Field Productions
Nintendo SNES The Sporting News: Baseball 1995 Hudson Soft
Nintendo SNES Super Baseball Simulator 1.000 1991 Culture Brain
Nintendo SNES Super Bases Loaded 1991 Jaleco
Nintendo SNES Super Bases Loaded 2 1994 Jaleco
Nintendo SNES Super Bases Loaded 3: License to Steal 1995 Jaleco
Nintendo SNES Super Batter Up 1992 Namco
Nintendo SNES Super RBI Baseball 1995 Time Warner Interactive
Nintendo 64 All-Star Baseball 99 1998 Acclaim
Nintendo 64 All-Star Baseball 2000 1998 Acclaim
Nintendo 64 Ken Griffey, Jr.’s Slugfest 1999 Nintendo
Nintendo 64 Major League Baseball Featuring Ken Griffey, Jr. 1998 Nintendo
Nintendo 64 Mike Piazza’s Strike Zone 1998 GT Interactive
Sega Genesis Cal Ripken Jr. Baseball 1992 Mindscape
Sega Genesis Frank Thomas Big Hurt Baseball 1995 Acclaim
Sega Genesis MLBPA Baseball 1994 Electronic Arts
Sega Genesis RBI Baseball 3 1991 Atari/Tengen
Sega Genesis RBI Baseball 4 1992 Atari/Tengen
Sega Genesis RBI Baseball ‘93 1993 Atari/Tengen
Sega Genesis RBI Baseball ‘94 1994 Atari/Tengen
Sega Genesis Roger Clemens MVP Baseball 1992 Acclaim
Sega Genesis SportsTalk Baseball 1992 Sega
Sega Genesis Super Baseball 2020 1993 Electronic Arts
Sega Genesis Tecmo Super Baseball 1994 Tecmo
Sega Genesis Tommy LaSorda Baseball 1989 Sega
Sega Genesis Tony LaRussa Baseball ’95 1994 Electronic Arts / SSI
Sega Genesis Triple Play 96 1995 Electronic Arts
Sega Genesis World Series Baseball 1994 Sega
Sega Genesis World Series Baseball ‘95 1995 Sega
Sega Genesis World Series Baseball ‘96 1996 Sega
Sega Genesis World Series Baseball ‘98 1997 Sega
Sega Master System American Baseball 1989 Sega
Sega Master System Great Baseball 1985 Sega
Sega Master System Reggie Jackson Baseball 1988 Sega
Sega Saturn All-Star Baseball ’97 Featuring Frank Thomas 1997 Acclaim
Sony Playstation 3D Baseball 1996 Crystal Dynamics
Sony Playstation Bottom of the 9th 1996 Konami
Sony Playstation Bottom of the 9th ‘97 1997 Konami
Sony Playstation Bottom of the 9th ‘99 1998 Konami
Sony Playstation Grand Slam 1997 Virgin Interactive
Sony Playstation Hardball 99 1998 Accolade
Sony Playstation MLB Pennant Race 1996 SCEA
Sony Playstation MLB 98 1997 SCEA
Sony Playstation MLB 99 1998 SCEA
Sony Playstation Triple Play 98 1997 Electronic Arts
Sony Playstation Triple Play 99 1998 Electronic Arts
Sony Playstation Triple Play 2000 1999 Electronic Arts
Sony Playstation VR Baseball 97 1997 Interplay
Sony Playstation VR Baseball 99 1998 Interplay
TurboGrafx-16 World Class Baseball 1989 NEC Interchannel
Windows Aaron vs. Ruth: Battle of the Big Bats 1997 Mindscape
Windows APBA Presents Baseball for Windows 1993 Miller Associates
Windows Backyard Baseball 1997 Humongous Entertainment
Windows Baseball Edition 2000 1999 Interplay
Windows Baseball Mogul 1997 Infinite Monkey
Windows Dynasty League Baseball 1994 Design Depot
Windows Front Page Sports: Baseball Pro ’96 Season 1996 Sierra On-Line
Windows Front Page Sports: Baseball Pro ’98 1998 Sierra On-Line
Windows Hardball 6 1998 Accolade
Windows Hardball 6 2000 Edition 1999 Accolade
Windows High Heat Baseball 1999 1998 3DO
Windows High Heat Baseball 2000 1999 3DO
Windows Microsoft Baseball 3D 1998 Microsoft Game Studios
Windows Microsoft Baseball 2000 1999 Microsoft Game Studios
Windows Triple Play 97 1996 Electronic Arts
Windows VR Baseball 2000 1998 Interplay

 

References

Classic Reload – Baseball Games

Kaneko, Gemma. “Here are the best baseball DOS games you can play online” mlb.com, January 22, 2015

List of Baseball Video Games. Wikipedia.

 

Tagged:
I am a New Jersey native with a passion for baseball, statistics, computers and video games who enjoys spending quality time with his family.

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