User Rating Comment Status
Doug DeMoss
United States
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Feb 2015
I get the impression that the game tries very hard to be a decent simulation of how baseball really worked in the 1870s... which means that you might have your game called on account of running out of balls if that event comes up from the random event deck (which is populated with all sorts of odd and entertaining things that actually happened). Whether that works for you as a game, well, is up to you.
Richard Partin
United States
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Aug 2008*
The worth of this game turns on to what extent--that is, how much detail--one wants in a purportedly historical simulation. This game, with a beautiful board and components, does give some feel of baseball as it was played in its professional infancy. It even rates players in teams from the 1876 National League. It's mainly a dice-based game in which one first rolls 1d6 for pitcher vs. batter, then, if necessary 1d6 for batter vs. fielder. Players are rated for batting, running, defense, or pitching. In addition, one results directs players to either of two draw piles to get random results based on actual historical accounts of games from that era. However, if one is looking for a remotely statistically accurate game, one is going to have to tinker with the results tables, especially for pitcher vs. hitter, because all non hit-ball outcomes are strikeouts. The problem is, batters then neither struck out nor walked much (9 balls for a walk) and fielders, barehanded, make a heck of a lot of errors. Once I adjusted the tables accordingly I got what seemed like realistic results. But given that the game includes knowledgable historical information about the era, why then would the tables be so far off kilter? That's the extent to which the game falls down. Also, the cards are played randomly and could easily be ignored if playing with rated players. Ratings are generally -2 to 2, which can result in some major mismatches using 1d6. But then again, there was a extreme spread between good and bad teams then, so maybe that's okay. Someone with math skills might find this an interesting game to toy with. I rate this game higher than some others because baseball was a very different game then from what we've had since the early 1900s, and I think the designer succeeded in giving some sense of that version. It's just that he didn't go far enough into it to make me want to play the game more than sporadically. On the other hand, the designer states up front in the rulebook: "It is a fairly simple simulation of baseball, designed to be easily played by a general audience." In the final analysis, however, if it's supposed to be a historical simulation, many of the particulars of this game fall short in doing so. Sold, July 2013.
Prev. Owned
Tom Veal
United States
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Sports > Baseball

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