Backyard Baseball

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Backyard Baseball
Backyard Baseball Logo.png
The current Backyard Baseball logo.
Genre(s)Sports
Developer(s)Humongous Entertainment
Publisher(s)Humongous Entertainment
Infogrames
Atari
The Evergreen Group
Platform(s)Nintendo DS, PlayStation 2, Wii, Microsoft Windows, iOS, Xbox 360, Game Boy Advance, Nintendo GameCube, Macintosh
First releaseBackyard Baseball
October 10, 1997
Latest releaseBackyard Sports: Baseball
2015

Backyard Baseball is a series of baseball video games for children which was developed by Humongous Entertainment and published by Atari. It was first released in October 1997 for Macintosh and Microsoft Windows. Later games were featured on Game Boy Advance, PlayStation 2, GameCube, Wii, and iOS. It is part of the Backyard Sports series. There have been eleven different versions of the game since 1997. Some of the game titles that were created include Backyard Baseball, Backyard Baseball 2001-2010, and Backyard Sports: Sandlot Sluggers.

The original game consisted of 30 neighborhood kids from which the player must build a team.[1] Over the years, the idea of "Pro players as kids" became popular, and the original statistics and looks of the players changed. Some of the professional players that were available included Chipper Jones, Frank Thomas, Alex Rodriguez, Alfonso Soriano, Ichiro Suzuki, Sammy Sosa, Jim Thome, Albert Pujols, Nomar Garciaparra, Ken Griffey Jr., and Barry Bonds. As the game progresses, there are some professionals that become available or "unlockable" including Randy Johnson, Derek Jeter, and Mike Piazza.

In Backyard Baseball, players take a managerial role by creating a team of different players to compete against opponents. In the different installments, one could choose to play a one-off exhibition game or a seasonal league, followed by the "Backyard Baseball League" playoffs, which contains the American League and National League divisional series, the AL and NL championship series and finally the "Backyard Baseball World Series". Series games will vary per game.

This game has various playable modes, they include: Single Game, Batting Practice, Spectator, and Season Game.

In 2013, The Evergreen Group acquired the intellectual property from Atari.

Legacy[edit]

Pablo Sanchez, one of the fictional playable characters in the game, has been regarded as the strongest character in video game history.[2][3][4]

The game has also been noted for its diversity (gender, race,disability) of characters, both in ratio of white to non-white and male to female, as well as skill level and the distribution of the best characters.[5]

Players[edit]

In Backyard Baseball 2001, the Backyard kids are joined by 31 MLB pro players, many of which were all-stars during the 1999 Major League Baseball All Star Game. Eventual Hall of Fame players featured include Barry Larkin, Vladimir Guerrero, Jeff Bagwell, Larry Walker, Chipper Jones, Derek Jeter, Mike Piazza, Tony Gwynn, Ken Griffey Jr., Cal Ripken Jr., Ivan Rodriguez, and Randy Johnson, who are all playable characters to choose from.

Several of these players would be featured in multiple releases including Nomar Garciaparra, Derek Jeter, and Alex Rodriguez.

Installments[edit]

Title Year Platforms Cover Athlete
Backyard Baseball October 24, 1997 Macintosh, Microsoft Windows Original Characters
Backyard Baseball 2001 May 19, 2000 Macintosh, Microsoft Windows Cal Ripken Jr.
Backyard Baseball 2002 Game Boy Advance Mike Piazza
Backyard Baseball 2003 2002 Macintosh, Microsoft Windows
Backyard Baseball 2003 Nintendo GameCube Alex Rodriguez
Backyard Baseball 2004 PlayStation 2
Backyard Baseball 2005 2004 Microsoft Windows
Backyard Baseball 2006 2005 Game Boy Advance
Backyard Sports: Baseball 2007 2006 Game Boy Advance, Nintendo GameCube, PlayStation 2, Microsoft Windows Albert Pujols
Backyard Baseball 09 2008 Nintendo DS, Wii, PlayStation 2, Windows David Ortiz
Backyard Baseball 10 2009 Nintendo DS, Wii, PlayStation 2
Backyard Sports: Sandlot Sluggers 2010 Wii, Nintendo DS, Xbox 360, Microsoft Windows Original Characters
Backyard Sports: Baseball 2015 2015 iOS, Android published by Fingerprint Network

References[edit]

  1. ^ Kram, Zach (2017-10-10). "How 'Backyard Baseball' Became a Cult Classic". The Ringer. Retrieved 2020-11-12.
  2. ^ "Pablo Sanchez: The Origin Of A Video Game Legend". www.wbur.org. Retrieved 2020-11-12.
  3. ^ "The 25 Best Virtual Athletes In Video Games". Complex. Retrieved 2020-11-12.
  4. ^ Carson, Dan. "The 15 Most Unfair and Terrifying Video Game Athletes to Play Against". Bleacher Report. Retrieved 2020-11-12.
  5. ^ Delayo, Mike (10 May 2019). "The Inclusive Legacy of Backyard Baseball". Fangraphs.

External links[edit]