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Inning-A-Minute Baseball
Players: 2
Age: 8 and up
Playing Time: 30 minutes
Publisher: Fast Forward Games
Price: $14.95
Rating: 6 of 10

Review by Brutilus

My local Wizards of The Coast store was closing and they were offering at least 50% off everything in the store. I was perusing the bargains when I came across Inning-a-Minute Baseball. As a fan of Fast Forward Games & Minute Sports' Touchdown-A-Minute Football, I decided to try out their baseball offering. As it turns out, IAM Baseball was the first offering in the Minute Sports line and it really shows.

It is a very well thought out game, but it is, after all is said and done, baseball. This is a game by baseball fans for baseball fans.

Game Components
Much like Touchdown-A-Minute Football, IAM Baseball comes in a very small package with a number of blank dice (6 white for play, 4 red for pitching, & 4 green for batting), a sticker sheet for the dice faces, a compact rulebook, and a playing field which is printed on the back of the cover.

Putting the sitckers of the dice was kind of a pain, but the colors hold remarkably well.

The playing field in IAM Baseball suffers from a lack of imagination and planning. The field is just that... A baseball diamond and outfield. Players are required to keep track of the following things on their own: infield & outfield positioning, base running strategy, innings, outs, score, and line up. The only thing the play field is any good for is tracking where the baserunners are. With a littleeffort, they could have included everything but the line ups on the scorecard if they had just shrunk down the diamond.

Gameplay is fairly simple and no prior knowledge of the rules of baseball is actually required. Prior knowledge helps quite a bit when selecting base running and fielding strategies.

Once the opposing coaches have selected their line up, they show them to their opponent. Each batter is associated with one of the 9 symbols that appear on the dice. The batter's symbol and the pitcher's symbol are then added to the dice roll. The dice roll consists of all 6 play dice, 1 hitting strategy selected by the offense, and 1 pitching strategy selcted by the defense.

The result of the roll is determined by grouping the results together. Whichever symbol appears most frequently is the outcome of the at bat.

Once there are runners on base,the defense can change their fielding positions and the offense can select a base running strategy. This adds a new level of complexity and strategy to the game. A handy quick reference guide is printed on the last page of the rules that make translating the result of each at bat much faster.

All in all, Inning-a-Minute Baseball doesn't suffer from the dragging gameplay that seems to plague our national pasttime. It is a fun game, but only a true baseball fan would get maximum enjoyment out of this title.

Inning-a-Minute Baseball is available direct from Fast Forward Games on their website.

Article and images © 2003 and may not be reproduced without permission.

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