|System: Wii, PS2, DS||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Konami||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: 2K Sports||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: July 25, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-2||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
As a result, MLB Power Pros 2008 on the DS is a considerably different experience than one that you'd have on the PS2 or Wii. Whereas the console version of the game is something that you could almost play indefinitely, there is much less potential for hundreds of hours of play with the DS version. The lack of a career mode is a disappointment, but an even bigger let-down is the lack of a basic season mode. The multiplayer options are certainly nice and it's great to have download play, but it still doesn't make up for the lack of a rather short single-player experience.
Yes, the options are a bit lacking. But what's still very much in place is the solid, tried-and-true Power Pros gameplay. Base-running and fielding are well-done, as are batting and pitching. The game uses a cursor system to direct pitches and swings, and it's not new to people who've played baseball games in the past. But considering all the crappy baseball games on the DS, it's nice to have a play system that actually works.
The sound is another little nit-pick I have with this game, particularly with regards to the announcer. The commentary is dull, bland, and boring, especially compared to that of the last set of North American Power Pros games. Music is severely lacking in this game and in many ways you get the feeling that this is another of the aspects of the game that was dumbed-down for an American release.
Despite all the little problems that are present in MLB Power Pros, it's still a pretty fun game. The batting and pitching are a lot of fun, and fielding and base running are finally done in such a way that you don't feel you're being treated like an idiot (I'm sick of baseball games with auto-fielding options that can't be turned off). The baseball mechanics are all there, and they're all well-implemented on the DS. That, at least, gives baseball fans something to love in the new Power Pros.
While it's not perfect and it's not an ideal handheld realization of the Power Pros franchise, this game does do many things right. If you're a fan of the franchise, you'll likely be a bit turned off and you're better off playing the PS2 or Wii version of Power Pros 2008. But if you're looking for a solid baseball game with an emphasis on mechanics rather than options, you'll likely enjoy the DS version of this game. There's certainly room for improvement, but it's a good first step and bodes well for handheld Power Pros games to come.
CCC Freelance Writer