Review by DarkAngel13

"An average game for an average series"

This was the last game of the Triple Play series that was available for the Playstation. Now since this was the last game of the series on that system, you would figure that EA would go pretty much all out and make it one of the best baseball games of all-time. Not quite. EA is notorious for resting on their laurels and this game is a prime example of them not putting all the effort they could have into creating a game.

The main problem with this game is that it is simply way too focused on offense. Pitching is not really even pitching in the game. If you attempt to throw a pitch out of the zone to try and fool the computer it isn't going to work. The AI will swing only at pitches that are in the strike zone on anything but the easiest difficulty level. You can't really even try to mix speeds up and catch the hitter off balance like you would in real life, so your best bet is to pretty much just throw batting practice pitches down the pipe and hope that your team is good in the field. There isn't any circle or anything for you to be able to tell where you're going to throw the pitch. You press the control pad or analog stick in whatever direction you want the pitch to be and hope that it lands in the strike zone. The only redeeming quality about the pitching is the pitch meter. This really isn't too useful though in that while you can decide how fast you want to throw a pitch, the AI has pretty much perfect timing so it's rather pointless.

Hitting is pretty much the exact same way. The computer AI doesn't even attempt to work the batter over, they just throw pitches in the strike zone all day long. This makes hitting ridiculously easy in that the hitter has the ability to get solid contact on a pitch no matter where it is thrown. Hitting home runs is too easy in the game as well. All you have to do is hold up on the pad and hit the power swing and the odds are that you're going to send one into the bleachers. You can pretty much average a home run a game with a batter with this method, which isn't very realistic at all.

The graphics of Triple Play are actually very good. There are many different motion-captured animations for specific player's swings and throws. You'll definitely be able to tell the difference of swings between Gary Sheffield and Ken Griffey Jr. The specific players themselves however are not very detailed. You aren't going to be able to distinguish player heights and weights very well in the game, which is somewhat disappointing. One of the most disappointing things with detail though is the lack of an option to play a game at night or during the day. Also missing is the option to select a different jersey to play in. Small details are what keep the game from looking great.

The sound of the game is average in comparison to other games. The in game music contains bands such as Fastball but has only about five different songs which will not present you with very many choices. The sound effects of the game are not very well done. The crowd doesn't sound enthusiastic at any point in the game. It can be the bottom of the ninth with the bases loaded and they will sound just like they did back in the first inning. One very annoying thing that you will find in the game is the sound of something launching whenever you hit a home run. If you hit a home run ball it will sound like someone is launching a rocket when somebody is hitting the ball instead of sounding like someone is actually hitting a baseball. It gets old very quickly, but not as quickly as the announcers do. Buck Martinez and Jim Huson get old VERY quickly. They really contribute nothing to the game. There isn't much variety with the things they say, and you have to deal with their “Oh and it hooks foul!” almost every time you hit a foul ball regardless of where the ball was hit. At least you can turn them off, which you will want to do after playing one game with them.

The game itself is not challenging nor is there much for you to keep playing it. The season mode only lasts one year, so once you're done with that you have to start all over. There are secret things for you to unlock, however these are just visual effects such as huge heads or stadiums set in outer space which isn't much incentive for someone to keep playing for. The rosters themselves are outdated from the outset. Despite on the case that they are updated for the 2001 season, it's only updated as of 1/1/2001 so there is no Albert Pujols or Ichiro in the game. While EA could have made it better had they taken a bit more time to update the rosters and find better announcers, it is still playable and is a slightly above average baseball game.

Key points:
+ Easy to pick up and play
+ Animations
- Lack of attention to detail
- The announce team
- Lack of intelligent A.I.
- Pitching system


Reviewer's Rating:   3.0 - Fair

Originally Posted: 07/09/01, Updated 10/10/05

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