World Series Baseball (Sniper)
Genre: Sports
Developer: Sega
Publisher: Sega

This Game Gear adaptation of World Series Baseball looks nothing like its Genesis cousin, featuring more of an over-the-shoulder perspective, similar to most other 8-bit era baseball games. Nonetheless, the view works well both for batting, and for controlling pitches. The stadium and sprite work are pretty minimalistic, but do enough to convey a good sense of the action, and there are also nice little touches like the newspaper clippings after games.

There are essentially three songs that rotate during play-- one during transitions, one during pitches, and one after hits-- and they are all appropriately baseball-ey, in that they evoke the "take me out to the ballgame", "America's past-time" perception of the sport. There are very nice digitized samples, which shout "out" or "safe!" during the action-- although the game doesn't utilize such voice samples to anywhere near the degree that the Genesis title does.

There are some definite imbalances present in the gameplay; the AI doesn't respond to curve balls much at all, making for easy strike-outs, while almost all hits are singles, with the very occasional home run sprinkled in. That said, the control scheme is very natural, making even actions like stealing bases second nature.

Compared to other 8-bit baseball games, such as Bases Loaded on the NES, World Series Baseball stacks up pretty well; the core gameplay is incredibly addicting even for non-baseball fans, while the game features every single team and player in the entire league thanks to its MLB license. The game also has rudimentary team and player editing capabilities, and battery backup season support making for one jam-packed handheld cartridge!

Sniper's verdict: