SNES A Day 14: Super Bases Loaded

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Approximate Release Date: September 30, 1991
Genre: Baseball simulation
Developer: Jaleco
Publisher: Jaleco

Super Bases Loaded has, hands down, the best pre-game matchup screen in video game sports history.

I mean, look at how awesome this is.

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I would believe it if I were told that was ripped straight from a bad Mortal Kombat ripoff.

But sadly, Super Bases Loaded is a baseball game. One player throws the ball with one of four different types of pitches, and the other player can hit the ball or bunt. Baseball. The game looks nice and cartooney, with bright colors and scoreboard animations when home runs and other big baseball stuff happens.

The goal of Super Bases Loaded isn’t just to beat your opponent; you have to beat them well. Once a game ends and you’re victorious, the game grades you on your performance out of 100. If you achieve a perfect score – which I will never come close to doing – you play again on a harder difficulty.

I have only two problems with Super Bases Loaded. First off, the fielding isn’t great. There’s no way to manually switch players as far as I can tell; the game just gives you control of the player closest to the ball. But often, the player closest to an in-play ball isn’t the one who will end up with it. And it’s really easy to lose yourself in the grass when tracking big hits in the outfield.

Secondly, and probably most importantly, these fake team names are awful. I can’t figure out which has the worst one. The Atlanta Amoebas? Boston Buzzards? Chicago Cyclops? New York Mercs? Washington Weasels? I get that alliteration is a thing, yet these are nonsensical. But in the interests of fair play, I was going to heap praise upon the sole legitimately good team name in the game, the Hawaii Islanders. But then I discovered it’s a real team name!

Super Bases Loaded 2 better step it up when it comes to fake baseball teams.

Tomorrow: Why Bandai decided to bring Ultraman: Towards the Future game to the United States will always be a mystery.

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