Sunday, February 25, 2007

You have to chug a beer at the top of all odd-numbered innings. Oh, and the fourth inning is the beer inning.

Tennis is out of the way, which brings us to Wii Sports: Baseball. That's right: Nintendo decided to bring us The Excitement Sport™. Did they manage to capture all the liveliness of men whacking at balls with wooden and/or metal sticks? Let's take a closer look.

Throughout Wii Sports, your Miis are utilized. Your lead batter is the Mii of your choice, and the rest of your line-up is culled randomly from your ranks (or, if you don't have enough, they'll make some for you). Would you expect Dwight Schrute and Lando Calrissian to work together in perfect harmony? I would go out on a limb and say that you would not! However, Dwight hit a home-run and Lando proved to be a terrific baserunner.

As with Tennis, the controls for baseball are fantastically simple (although a bit more complicated than the mere "swing-at-the-ball" of the aforementioned sport). At the plate, you hold the Wiimote like a bat. I don't think the positioning of your bat matters, but you should probably work on your form anyway. After all, once you get a Wii you won't be going out and playing actual sports for some time to come, so when it comes to exercise, you takes it where you can gets it. When you swing, it's fairly straightforward.

Once again, I'm not sure if follow-through or direction of your cut matters. I've been swinging upward and downward with unexpected results. Instead, I believe it all has to do with timing. Wait too long and the ball will go right. Swing too early and it will go left. I don't believe placement hitting matters, as your baserunners are placed depending on distance of the hit and fielder error. Hitting is slightly difficult--more difficult than smacking the ball in Wii tennis, at any rate. I may need to spend a little more time with the game, but the timing needs to be precise.

When the sides retire, it's simple as well. Just a downward swing of your arm and you pitch the ball. If you want to throw it faster, swing your arm faster. However, this is the first instance in Wii Sports that involves buttons--and rightfully so, otherwise pitching would become an even-more-boring venture. I say even-more-boring because there's still not a lot to it. You can throw curveballs, screwballs, and splitters depending on your use of two buttons. You can also use the directional pad to throw the ball inside or outside. I've found no discernible way to hit the batter, unfortunately.

Fielding is nonexistant, controlled entirely by the computer. It certainly would give the pitcher something better to do as they anxiously await their turn at the bat. It's this disparity that really kills Baseball for me. You're entertained for about half the time and bored for the other half.

Of course, that's a whole lot more entertainment than actually watching a baseball game.

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