Developer: Gamevil
Price: $4.99
Version Reviewed: 1.1
Device Reviewed On: iPad

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★½☆
Game Controls Rating: ★★★★☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★½☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★★½

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

It’s easy to not see the forest for the trees when it comes to Baseball Superstars 2010 HD. It does a lot wrong, from messing up basic baseball elements to featuring gameplay mechanics that are almost too easy to master. By the time I realized that the game had these problems, however, I had spent so much time with the game because it was just so much fun to play and impossible to put down.

Baseball Superstars 2010 HD follows in the tradition of old-school baseball games, where the gameplay is simplified down to core elements. Hitting is largely just timing-based, as you can swing or bunt, and can move side to side in the batter’s box to influence where you hit the pitches. Pitching involves selecting your pitch and where you want it to go. You have your standard exhibition, season, and home run derby modes, but the mode that will keep you coming back to the game is My League mode, which lets you create a custom batter and pitcher to play through seasons, improving their stats through training and by completing events to get you G-Points that let you buy performance-enhancing items.

The gameplay is far from perfect. On the batting side of things, pitchers throw pitches with unrealistically bizarre movement that can be nearly impossible to pick up on, at least until you start to figure out which pitches you can hit; to the point where my weak hitter in League mode was a .420 hitter as a rookie. Pitching is insanely easy, even on the hardest difficulty, especially once you figure out which pitches work the best for getting hitters out. For example, once you get a first strike past the batter, throwing pitches that go towards left handed hitters and away from right handed hitters is an almost guaranteed swing and miss. I quickly exploited this fact to the point where my starting pitcher went 23-1 in about 29 starts, and striking out 552 batters. That’s not a typo. That’s how easy the pitching is in this game. Also, the game features frequently broken English and uses non-standard baseball terms, especially in the mission mode, where trying to figure out what you have to do can be difficult because of the unfamiliar verbiage.

Yet despite all the problems with the game, there’s something hopelessly addictive about it. The League mode especially has a ‘just one more game’ quality to it, where I was losing more sleep than usual as I’d be thinking that I’d play just a little bit more, then next thing I know, it’s way later than I ever intended. Even conscious of the issues I would have with the game as I played it, I still had trouble putting it down. The game may be easy and inaccurate, sure, but I still couldn’t stop.

And really, that’s the best sign that a game is fun – that you can’t stop playing it. Despite every reason I’d have to hate this game, I still loved it. Baseball Superstars 2010 HD may be very imperfect, but the hours of gameplay and accumulated sleep loss don’t lie. This is a severely flawed, but incredibly fun baseball game.

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