It's only natural that when something has been around as long as video games, it's bound to evolve. With technology constantly getting better, so do the games that utilize it. One such game is the beloved All-Star Baseball 2002. This popular baseball game revolutionized the way people play sports video games by introducing new mechanics and features that are still used today.
The Original All-Star Baseball Series
The All-Star Baseball series began in 1997, on the Sega Saturn and PlayStation consoles, and was largely well-received by fans of the genre. The original game was developed by Midway Games, which is perhaps best known for its Mortal Kombat franchise. The game featured all the features players had come to expect, including a variety of teams, MLBPA players, and season mode. Players were able to create plays, customize teams, and simulate seasons. There were also a few mini-games included, such as Home-Run Derby and Steal the Gumball.
The series was quite successful, and the next installment was released in 1999, entitled All-Star Baseball 2000. This game was a considerable improvement over the first, with nicer graphics and more detailed stats. Both versions of the game were very popular among baseball fans, but were not without their criticisms. One of these criticisms was the lack of updated rosters, a complaint that was addressed in the third iteration.
The Revolutionary All-Star Baseball 2002
All-Star Baseball 2002, released in 2001 and developed by Acclaim Entertainment, was a massive improvement from the earlier titles. The graphics and audio were far better, and the game added several new features that the previous games didn't have.
For starters, there was now an online mode, allowing players to play a simulated game against anyone online. This was groundbreaking stuff, as online gaming was still in its infancy at the time. Aside from the online mode, All-Star Baseball 2002 had several other features that would become staples of sports video games. The most notable was the introduction of career and franchise mode, which allowed players to simulate an entire season of baseball. This was a huge step forward for the series, and was one of the reasons All-Star Baseball 2002 remains one of the best baseball games ever made.