Midway NBA Jam and NFL Blitz are two of the largest sports game franchises as both offer fun, over the top experiences that require little knowledge of the pastime in question. The company would eventually target hockey, boxing, and even professional wrestling, but it never quite got around to releasing a baseball game in the same vein. Or did it?
Thanks to the Video Game History Foundation, we now have one see firsthand at (and ROM downloads for) Power-up baseball
“[Power-Up Baseball] should be over the top and extreme and all those good things from the 90s, ”Art Director Alan Noon told Cifaldi. “The initial art style I chose was pretty trendy at the time with similar broken fonts and lots of paint splatter and things like that. That kind of look and feel ran through most of the game. “
The main goal behind it Power-up baseball was to give America’s favorite pastime its own NBA Jamand combines the digitized graphics and sense of humor that made the Midway basketball game such a hit with Incredible Technologies’ trackball expertise. But while the particular pitches and swings would definitely have set it apart from the rest of the crowd, the pace of baseball didn’t match the fast-paced arcade action the two studios had envisioned Power-up baseball
“It was too long,” said programmer Brian Smolik. “We cut it down to maybe three innings or something. And at some point you could buy an inning at a time. And who’s going to play an inning, right? It was great when you could see a whole game. But that was like the length of two or three [NBA Jam games]and that’s not difficult for anyone to get through. “
Power-up baseball was tested on-site in Chicago, with multiple cabinets built and sent to various arcades, but there was simply no market for it. The passion for the project was there, but the developers had overlooked an important factor: how well it would make money for the operators. Sad, Power-up baseball has been canceled and only now is it finally seeing the light of day thanks to the diligent work of video game historians.
Make sure to check out the Video Game History Foundation full description on Power-up baseball Learn more about creating this recently unearthed project and all the files needed to check it out for yourself. VGHF offers full source code and ROM downloads for Power-up baseballand even helped add support for the game to an upcoming version of the MAME arcade emulator. What a helpful bunch!