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The 3DO Company continues the High Heat Baseball series with its third major name change in the last three years. Following High Heat Baseball 2000 and Sammy Sosa High Heat Baseball 2001, released in 1999 and 2000 respectively, High Heat Major League Baseball 2002 infuses virtual MLB players with statistical data based on real-life performances in replicated ballparks. Licensed by Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association, the game features statistics from Sports Team Analysis & Tracking System, Incorporated (STATS).
Two specific roster choices include those from the end of the 2000 MLB season and the beginning of 2001, updated at the official website www.highheat.com. Seven game modes allow customization of dozens of player preferences and include exhibition games, season, career, home run derby, playoffs, and pitching and batting practice. Pre-game or seasonal setups provide options for a fantasy draft, amateur draft, free agent pool, player creation, player edits, manager profiling, scheduling, trading, awards and naming conventions.
Specific gameplay includes decision-making in a variety of situations: in the field (before the pitch), on the mound (before the pitch), fielding, making the play, at bat (before the pitch), hitting the ball and running the base paths. Four controller options are offered — 4, 8 and 10 button pads plus the keyboard. Setup options and some on-field decisions are activated through a series of pull down menus, and nearly two dozen video options are available, ranging from umpire and sky to reflections and jersey names. Ten audio preferences include music, hecklers, EAX support, and crowd noises among others.
Other features include weather settings (wind, rain), one-pitch mode, injuries, mound visits, automatic replays, a designated hitter option, day or night games, game pace, guessing pitches, pitcher warm up, announcers, variable umpires, and more. A wide variety of automatic settings are optional as well. Camera angles can be customized to show perspectives from hitting, pitching and fielding viewpoints.
High Heat Major League Baseball 2002 supports two-players over the Internet (www.gamespy.com or a LAN. ~ Michael L. House, All Game Guide