In praise of a great video game

After false starting on several “serious” blog topics, I decided that you, my loyal, invisible (and possibly nonexistant) readerdom deserved something better. I’m going to talk about a great, great video game.

I’m not talking about PS3 or X-box or PS2 or PS1 or PS 1/3 or Sega Genesis or Super Nintendo. I’m talking about a console which most of us spent long hours either banging on or blowing into. Yes, the NES. And I’m talking about a great baseball game– a game where the players have one name and are either tall and thin, short and beefy or short and thin (Three bodies, hundreds of players). A game where you can use the same pitcher every day and it makes absolutely no difference.

I’m talking about Little League World Series. The evil geniuses who put together this compulsively addictive game– complete with six inning games and nearly entire teams full of players whose names are slang terms for male genitals (“And here’s Peter, who beats a little dribbler down to Wang, he’s up with it and throws to Dong at first, and Peter trots limply back to the dugout”)– deserve their 15 minutes of immortality.

The best part of the game is that, as if anticipating the direction of real baseball, the experience is very much customizable based on the team you choose to be. New York and California are the Yankees of the game. You have a feeling their generic coach slipped them a few dollars under the table and altered their birth certificates. The Italian team is a personal favorite, because they’re about as hopeless as the Royals. Nobody can hit, nobody can throw hard, your outfielders run as if they have severe arthritis, and losing competitively is about as good as it gets.

As a kid, I remember I loved this game for its “realism”. This essentially meant that it was fun because you couldn’t beat the game 22-3 the second time you ever played it. Now, I just enjoy glorious things like the same shot of the “fans” after every home run of every game, and the cheesy speech about “leaders of tomorrow” over the closing credits. It’s baseball, more or less. And it’s much better than it should be.





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2 Responses to “In praise of a great video game”

  1. Julie Says:

    Having played this game (with you), I think that sometimes this game is better than real baseball. 🙂

  2. kataztrophy Says:

    While reading the first two paragraphs, I thought the game you were talking about would either be Baseball Stars, or one of the Bases Loaded games(both were top tier). LLWS is one retro gem I actually overlooked intentionally. Your description of the game intrigues me.

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