Arcade Baseball
Copyright/Publisher: COMPUTE!'s Gazette/COMPUTE! Publications, Inc., Programmed By:
Mark Tuttle & Kevin Mykytyn, Release Year: 1986, Genre: Baseball, Number Of Players: 1 or 2

INTRODUCTION

Here's a computerized version of the once-popular mechanical baseball game found in the pre-electronics arcades. The only difference is you don't need any dimes or quarters to play. An exciting one- or two-player game for the Commodore 64.

INSTRUCTIONS

Spring training is over and baseball season is under way. Here's a chance to do some swinging and pitching against a friend or your Commodore 64. "Arcade Baseball" is modeled after the mechanical baseball arcade game that was popular before computerized games dominated the scene. But this computer game offers a few options that the mechanical versions did not: You can choose to practice or play, and you can select an opponent: another person or your computer.

A Few Choices

After typing in the program, be sure to save a copy. To play the game, type RUN. First you're prompted to choose Practice (f1) or Play (f7). In practice mode, 20 pitches a random mix of fastballs, changeups, curves, and sliders are thrown so you can practice hitting. (To change the number of pitches thrown, change the value of RM in line 740.) No runners are displayed, and outs and runs do not accumulate. After all the pitches are thrown, you're asked again to select Practice or Play.

In Play mode, you're asked to select a one- or two-player game. Press the 1 or 2 key. If you wish to play the computer, select the one-player game. Now you're ready to begin.

The screen is divided into three sections. On the left is the playing field. Along the top of the field is a row of black holes. A batted ball will land in one of these holes, and each is marked with a result (single, double, triple, or out). To hit a home run, the ball must pass over the center of the rectangular ramp near the center of the field. (The crowd loves a home run and cheers When either team hits one.) At the bottom of the field is a specially designed bat.

The upper right corner of the screen is the scoreboard, which contains the inning, number of strikes, outs, and the current score. Players are represented as Visitor and Home. In the square below the scoreboard is a display of the baseball diamond, designed to show which bases are occupied by the team at bat.

Play Ball!

You must first choose a one- or two-player game. The one-player version like the original arcade game lasts for three outs. Your objective as batter is to score as many runs as possible before reaching three outs. The computer, as pitcher, randomly selects the type of pitch: fast ball, changeup (a slow moving pitch), curve (which breaks away, to the right of the plate), or slider (which breaks in, to the left of the plate).

Swing at a pitch by pressing the space bar. This moves the bat left to right. Once the bat is released, you no longer have control of it, so you must time the release of the bat to meet the pitched ball. If the ball passes untouched, it counts as a strike.

Because different pitches cause the ball to travel at different speeds and in some cases change directions, timing the release of the bat is crucial to good hitting. The bat is designed as a half circle to allow you control of the angle of the batted ball. There's no such thing as a foul ball in Arcade Baseball; you can bounce the ball off the sides of the field.

When you get a hit, you'll see any movements on the base paths at the lower right of the screen. If the hit is a single, the batter advances to first base, and any other base runners move up one base. A double moves all runners up two bases, a triple three bases. A run scored is indicated by a chiming tone and an update on the scoreboard.

The two-player version offers more variety:
1. The game lasts for three innings. If the score is tied after three innings, play continues until one player wins. (The home team always gets to bat last, regardless of the score.) The visiting team is blue, the home team red.

2. You pitch as well as hit. Press one of the function keys to deliver a pitch: f1 - fastball; f3 - changeup; f5 - slider; and f7 - curveball.