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MVP Baseball 2004 - PS2, Xbox, GameCube, PC

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MVP Baseball 2004

MVP Baseball 2004 Rated: Everyone

The Bottom Line

Video game baseball has never looked as good as it does in MVP Baseball 2004. By tweaking the gameplay and pouring on the polish - EA has built one of the hardest hitting baseball games ever. Unfortunately, MVP Baseball 2004 still has a few gaps in the lineup, especially in the front office.
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Pros

  • MVP Baseball 2004 looks almost like a real game
  • The new 'Pure Swing' system adds a new level to the game
  • You can play or manage the both MLB and Minor teams

Cons

  • Management mode has some kinks
  • Alas, still no Xbox Live

Description

  • Graphics: 4.5 - Everything but the fans looks great, kind of like real baseball.
  • Sound: 5 - Great music, great sound effects, you'll want to sing along come the 7th inning stretch.
  • Concept: 3 - Aside from a few tweaks it's still baseball.
  • Control: 3 - Batting is great, fielding is way too much work.
  • Difficulty: 4 - Don't expect to win the world series your first year out.
  • Replay: 4 - I don't always follow baseball, yet I still had a very hard time putting it down.
  • All scores are out of 5. The overall rating is not an average of the above scores.
  • Rated: Everyone - MVP Baseball 2004 is perfectly fine for all audiences.

Guide Review - MVP Baseball 2004 - PS2, Xbox, GameCube, PC

MVP Baseball 2004 looks and plays beautifully. The boys of summer look better in the game than they do in real life. Don't believe me? Just take a look at Frank Thomas, both in the game and on TV. Seriously though, the models look fantastic, and all the stars in MVP Baseball 2004 stand, bat and run like their real world MLB counterparts. The parks look grand, it's too bad the fans look like they came from a Nintendo 64 wrestling game.

EA has taken bold strides this year in all of its sports games, and MVP Baseball 2004 is no exception. The batting system has been totally overhauled to reflect the new 'Pure Swing' system. Basically, you press one button to swing, and the left analog stick positions the bat to make optimal contact. I'll admit, it took some getting used to, but it does add quite a bit to the game. The defense also has had their controls tweaked to make it more controllable to scale fences and dive for catches.

MVP Baseball 2004's greatest asset and biggest disappointment is its management system. Now you can live out your life long dream of being a major league manager and being hated by everyone. The level of detail is great, but actually negotiating contracts and trading is not only confusing, it's downright awkward. Why they didn't import Maden's seamless system is beyond me.

One wild pitch aside, MVP Baseball 2004 is a top notch baseball sim, and easily a contender for video baseball MVP.

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