Nicktoons MLB Preview
- By: CM Boots-Faubert
- Posted 10th Sep 2011
Our introduction to the upcoming cartoon-influenced baseball game Nicktoons MLB -- which is due to land in gamer hands on September 13th in North America and on September 28th in the rest of the world -- was a much different experience than we usually have, starting with where we found it, which was in the midst of the madness that was E3 2011 in Los Angeles.
You have to understand that we were not aware that 2K had gone to the effort of creating a safe and relatively peaceful sanctuary for the members of the 4th Estate in its designated exhibit spaces at E3 -- a place where they offered the sort of adult libations as well as pub food snacks that, when combined with comfortable if intimate seating, a very friendly and helpful pub staff, and a scattering of game PR's and rep's who were willing to provide a no-pressure look at any of the 2K stable of titles present at the show. . . Well, this all combined to be without question the best exhibit space at E3 we had ever experienced!
We actually arrived nearly an hour early because the demo immediately prior to our 2K appointment ended up being canceled due to their A/V system doing a meltdown, so we were hoping that we could get squeezed into the one of the earlier presentations at 2K's booth which was why we arrived earlier than our appointment dictated. Sadly that was not possible because 2K's schedule was very tight, so instead of getting squeezed in we ended up spending a very pleasant 45 minutes having lunch and liquid refreshments at their surprise sports bar!
While noshing on some tasty sandwich rolls we met the two blokes from High Voltage who occupied a pair of very comfortable chairs near the bar, and who appeared to be spending their time playing the game that they were rep'ing: Nicktoons MLB. At least part of their duties -- in addition to buying beers for games journo's -- was to introduce them to the game by playing it for or with them, and that was what ended up happening to us.
As we played the game the impressive translation for the cartoon characters drew most of our attention, so it was not until we saw our first real MLB player that it clicked... The whole time that we were playing the game we kept commenting to each other that it was amazing that a studio -- any studio -- had gone to the lengths that clearly they had here to create a faithful baseball sim, whose central focus is cartoon characters -- when the truth of the matter finally hit us: Nicktoons MLB not only was built using the game engine and resources from the underappreciated baseball sim The Bigs, it was for all intents and purposes The Bigs with cartoon characters and some cartoon stadiums added in!