World Series Baseball 2K3 for XBOX
World Series Baseball 2K3 continues Sega's baseball franchise that dates back to the 16-bit Genesis console. The game engine introduced in World Series Baseball for Xbox has been refined with more motion-captured animation in the field, on the mound, and at the plate. Among the new additions to the 2002 version's core gameplay is a fielder's ability to jump to snag line drives or to scale walls and rob a batter of a potential home run. Players can also pitch from a view behind the pitcher, warm-up relievers in the bullpen, and choose from multiple hitting options, including a timing-based swing instead of the original's cursor-based system.
Players who decide on the cursor-based system will have additional options to help them adjust to batting. Four different cursor sizes are available, from very small to large, with each size further adjusted according to a batter's real-life ability during the 2002 season. A pitcher, for example, will see the cursor shrink compared to an MVP slugger. While on the mound, players can now select four different pitch heights, choose a cut-fastball if the pitcher is able to throw it, use vibration feedback in lieu of the cursor to "feel" their way around the strike zone, and view a 3D representation of the last pitch thrown to settle any discrepancies about a ball or strike.
Computer AI has also been addressed from 2002's World Series Baseball, so runners will be more aggressive on the base paths and hitters will respond more quickly to pitching patterns. Pitch speeds are faster, errant throws, passed balls, and wild pitches are possible, and a new Legend difficulty setting tests the skills of those looking for a big-league challenge. As in High Heat Baseball 2004, players also have the ability to adjust individual sliders to tweak the game to their liking. A new editing function lets players customize an athlete's name as well as his assigned ratings and attributes. In addition, the Franchise mode now offers more depth by incorporating a record book, Hall of Fame, player loyalty when signing free agents, fatigue, the ability to hire and fire coaches, and more control over the areas a coach has on player development.