Pocket Baseball - a twist on a new game

November 5, 2014

I've always wanted to make a baseball game. After Pocket Cricket was designed, crossing over the mechanics of hitting choice (conservative/aggressive) seemed like an obvious transition.


Not being a diehard baseball fan though, I needed more time and feedback from cousins in Nth America to make sure I have a game the upper hemisphere will accept.


The key elements and mechanics I wanted to introduce are the individual contests. The pitcher and the hitter. The runner and the fielder. The Coaches and their power plays.


Pitching will be straight forward. 1 in 6 chances of a STRIKE or BALL, with the remaining 4 in 6 all common pitches that require the batter to swing.


Batting allows two choices. An infield hit for a run to base or an outfield hit that runs a higher risk of being caught in the deep but also presents a Home Run opportunity.


LEGS vs ARMS - this is a new mechanic for the Pocket Sports series and I hope it will be popular. A simple, yet effective roll between the runner and the fielder determines if the Leg speed beats the Arm power. While I've always had a minimalist approach to components, both players will have their own die to give a sense of team control.


POWER PLAYS - another deviation from our normal design. Pocket Baseball presents a new challenge and that's game length. Typically all of our other games play for 10-15mins. With 9 innings of baseball some modifiers to assist in better odds of dice rolls are needed.


Using Power Plays gives players a choice of when to use them in game. They can assist with a +1 to your LEGS to make running (and stealing) to base more advantageous. On the flipside, +1 to ARMS can crush an innings. A relief pitcher to increase the chance of a STRIKE being ripped down form the mound, and of course, pinch hitters (3 of them) to be brought in at times when bases are loaded.


This really is a new addition yet it compliments baseball well.


The final addition is the use of tokens (cardboard counters). The game instructions will show a mini diamond map, but we'll have a larger PDF version on the website for download. The counters come in 5 different teams. Each set of Pocket Baseball will contain 1 team. On one side will be the team logo used for runners moving around bases. On the other will be the 6 power plays that when flipped over indicate that power play is activated.


Whether there is too much in this game is yet to be determined. I know for sure though, at Pocket Sports we're always looking to improve and push the boundaries of what independent design can fit into a pocket sized game!

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November 5, 2014

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