RBI Baseball is back after a very, very long time. Sporting a new look and the backing of the MLB it looks absolutely stunning for a game that runs like an old Playstation 1, yes 1 game. I don't enjoy attacking games, but this one is really rough and looks directly ported from the mobile version. What really gets me is the fact that it is priced at $20 which is really high for an arcade game and I've played much better for half of that. What's really sad that this will most likely be the only option that Xbox will receive for the sport, so fans won't have an option. Now from that opening we go onto the gameplay to back these comments. At the base level it plays like a generic baseball game should which is fine, but it's the surrounding world and actual play that a game like this needs. The fans are paper cut outs which are fine to some extent, but they are all the same with no emotion or connection. They clap and stand up, but are quite dead. Even more there is no atmosphere in the world that makes Baseball interesting; no music, no cinematics and nothing that gives us the feeling of being in a ball game. This already excludes an distraction from the awful game at hand with really shotty AI and fixed camera angles. The characters in the game, though having high resolution photos or logos aren't given any personality and are thrown into a generic player type. This is also overlooked at times with many players, but even the facial detail makes them look as if they are all slendermen with no emotion or drive. The play itself is simple and really comes from just hitting the ball in hopes of it going somewhere of giving you a chance to hit base. This works fine, though it is really sad when the batter or pitcher just slide back and forth. Really, they actually slide as though they are ancient sprites stuck in pace. A step or something would have helped a little against this as I was getting a good laugh at it. Once you do get a hit the AI seems quite efficient at just standing and having the ball hit their area without much movement. Every once and awhile you hit a home run for a generic cutscene of it going out of the park, even end of match boards are all the same with a differing title. It's this collection of issues that really hurts the actual play of the game. As far as modes go we have default exhibition where it is a quick match, this can be done locally with a friend. There is also the regular league play which has multiple season lengths to choose from and of course a just post-season setup to jump right into the action. Now these matches are fairly long which is fine and they switch the turn based fashion of which Baseball does, so that's a good point!
It looks really good if this was a good four generations ago. It shines, but it absolutely plain in terms of textures or designs. High resolution imagery only does so much for you in a game, the rest of it has to look the same. There is no life to the basic gameplay, I'm sure this would look fine and even great mobile. Though for a console title of that much space and cost much more is expected. Basic play is available here though if someone looking for something of more substance it will not be found here.
RBI Baseball is a shame to Baseball fans, but if you need to play it does do just that. It looks as though they tried to create a game that people could play and they did just that, but it's basic and lacks the feeling of a sport. When I play a sports game of any genre I want to feel in the game, see the fan scream and a shine in the sky from the beautiful sun. I want to be able to fight back against the AI and have every game feel special. These pieces of substance were just not there and it was void. I would honestly suggest a price job and try again in the future, it may be hard to break into a sports area though more effort needs to be put into it. The slender people and stick sprites are really ugly, really ugly. If you really love Baseball and need to play it, you can as there really isn't too many options. Other than that just wait on something else to show up or the next entry to RBI.
RBI Baseball 2014 for Xbox 360 and Playstation 3
Review code provided by MLBA