Tuesday 10 October 2023

Hardball! (Atari 8-bit review)

Developer: Dan Thompson, Mimi Doggett, Edgar Noel Bogas
Publisher: Atari, Accolade, Kixx, U.S. Gold
Released: 1987

Hardball! is a baseball game that was first released on the Commodore 64 in 1985.

+ Gameplay is intuitive with easy-to-use controls, and there's a wide array of pitch types to keep opposing hitters off-balance.

+ Impressive number of options in terms of infield / outfield player position, stat-based substitutions, and D.H. choice.

+ The umpire's "Strike!" call (complete with written text next to his sprite) is a really great presentational touch. 

+ Graphics are top-notch with lots of background detail and superb player animations.

- Only includes two teams (Champs Vs All-Stars), so the difficulty level can be somewhat overwhelming to newcomers.

- Takes forever for an outfielder to throw the ball back to the infield, and runners move very slowly around the bases.

- Your defensive players are unable to chase airborne foul balls, which results in missed outs.

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