MLB Slugfest 2003

a game by Midway
Platforms: XBox, Playstation 2
Editor Rating: 7/10, based on 2 reviews
User Rating: 8.0/10 - 1 vote
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Are you one of those people who find baseball to be too slow for your tastes? Don't understand the excitement behind a 'pitchers duel'? Do you think every game should be played in Colorado to bump up the offensive output? If so, Slugfest may be your type of baseball game.

When I first started reading about this game, I was admittedly skeptical. The NFL Blitz and NHL Hitz games work because they're already starting with physical sports and just taking them to the extreme. Baseball on the other hand, is one of the least physical sports so I had no idea how Midway was going to pull off turning America's pasttime into an extreme sport. After playing just one inning, I knew they'd managed to capture the magic in yet another sport.

If you are looking for a true baseball sim, you are way off base reading this review. I suggest you pick up World Series Baseball. If you are looking for something a little different and a lot less traditional, you should really enjoy this game. It is easy to pick up and start playing almost immediately. They really take the guessing out of hitting as almost every pitch is a strike. For this reason alone, I will be pulling this game out as a party game. It is just that easy to play.

I never thought I would see they day where a licensed baseball game would include violence but it plays a huge part in this game. Base runners can physically strike the fielder in an attempt to jar the ball free so they can take the extra base. The game also features a turbo button which exaggerates your speed or power. Using the turbo added a strategic element to the game as well. You can even throw runners out at first from the outfield by using a turbo throw. Frustrating, yet fun at the same time.

I did have a couple of complaints with the game, most notably being the auto switching of players when a ball was hit. For some reason, the game rarely switched to the outfielder as the active player so you would fumble to hit the player switch button just to take control of the player the ball was hit at. It got to be quite frustrating. I also found that I really had to be in the mood to play the game. If I was not in the right mindset, I would get frustrated and quit. Finally, if you are a baseball purist and stat lover, you will be disappointed at the skewed numbers you will see put up in each game.

Overall, this was a fairly enjoyable, arcade style game that does the Midway extreme sports name justice. It is going to be a blast to pull out at social gatherings and watch two people who have never played the game beat the crap out of each other. Oh, and I almost forgot to mention the gorgeous graphics and stadium models that will knock your socks off. I suggest you give Slugfest at least a rental because it might surprise you.

Download MLB Slugfest 2003

XBox Download

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Playstation 2 Download

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Game Reviews

With three out of the 'big four' already under Midway's belt, it didn't take a genius to predict that it was only a matter of time before their formula was applied to the baseball diamond. Well, they've finally covered the bases in the form of MLB SlugFest 2003. Offering gorgeous graphics, over-the-top game play and tight control, MLB SlugFest 2003 comes home to the PS2 lookin' for the grand slam.

MLB SlugFest 2003 features several different modes of play, including: Exhibition, Challenge, Tournament, and a Season Mode consisting of 52 games. The game also features an excellent control scheme that's tight and responsive ' nothing confusing here folks. No question, like its basketball, football, and hockey cousins, game play is over-the-top. A typical contest will include scorching line drives, monster home runs, bean balls, and flaming athletes. There's also plenty of hard-slidin' action, where you can attempt to knock the ball out of the fielder's grasp. And if you're ever called out at one of the bases, a quick punch to the chops will fix his butt. It's all good clean fun and more times than not, quite hilarious. Due to its over-exaggerated game play, however, baseball purists will want to steer clear for sure.

The graphics and animation are top notch. Sporting clean and crisp bodily textures and impressive facial features, the player models are perhaps the best I've seen yet. The stadiums, playing fields and fans in the stands are equally well done. Players move about with smoothness and grace, whether they're completing a double play or taking out the opposing player. The sound effects also get high marks. From the crack of the bat to the cheering frenzy of the hometown crowd, it's an earful for sure. The announcers call the play-by-play with a real sense of urgency, also mixing in a bizarre assortment of mindless chatter about the fans or about a particular player. Together, the audio/video package comes off quite nicely.

MLB SlugFest 2003 is not for everyone (despite the "E" ESRB rating). I can't help but think that the target audience here is more suitable for the preteen to early twenties age group. For those of you looking for a real baseball experience, there are better choices currently available. Nonetheless, the graphics and sound effects are superb. Furthermore, like all Midway sports games, the action is wild and crazy ' trust me, you've never seen baseball like this before. I say, give it a rent and see for yourself.

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