Just like Freeverse's recently released Warpgate [$4.99 / $6.99 (HD)], Flick Baseball [$2.99] has had a development cycle that borders on legendary for an iPhone game. We first heard of the game in a guest article by Freeverse developer Mark Andersson, and didn't actually see it in motion until a few months later when we played a very basic (and different looking) build of the game at WWDC. Later, we posted a preview trailer that had such an impact on Baseball fans around here that it seemed to slightly overshadow the release of Gameloft's Derek Jeter Real Baseball that popped up on the App Store in the following weeks.

After our preview from last week, I've spent a considerable amount of time with the game. Essentially, if you're looking for an in-depth 3D baseball simulation game, you're going to need to keep waiting-- But if you're like me and prefer sports games that have an arcade feel to them, then you'll enjoy Flick Baseball.

Each of the different actions that make up the baseball game has a mini-game feel to it. Batting works just like Com2Us's Homerun Battle 3D [$4.99 / Free / $4.99 (HD)] where you tilt your device to move around a transparent crosshair of sorts to line up your bat. Tapping the screen swings, and you can advance bases by tapping on them in the corner of the screen.

Pitching is a guessing game of sorts that you play with the AI controlled batter. You select a pitch, then tilt the device to aim where you're going to throw and tap the screen to let it fly. If you choose the same pitch as the AI batter, they get a power bonus if they hit the ball. When your pitching luck runs out and the batter lands a hit, Flick Baseball automatically has your team field the ball. While most fielding is automatic, for fly balls, you contribute by playing a timing-based mini-game where four baseball gloves come flying out of each corner of the screen. In this instance, catching the ball requires you to tap the gloves as they intersect.

Once one of your fielders have the ball, using the same interface as running bases you can tap to throw the ball. While none of these areas of the game feel particularly technical, they are still fun. Also, if you don't like batting (or fielding), you can skip entire innings to only play the portions of the game you enjoy.

Skipped innings are calculated based on the statistics of your players, which serves as a fairly in-depth subsystem that controls the entire game. As you go through a game your pitcher's stamina decreases and it becomes harder to aim your pitches. Each batter's accuracy controls the size of their tilt-controlled hit zone. Many other player stats run the rest of the game.

If you're serious enough about baseball to want to play through entire seasons, you can do that as well, and skip as many games as you'd like just like skipping innings. And if you really get in to the game, you can build entire customized teams where you can tweak, modify, and fiddle around with nearly everything imaginable to create your own team filled with players that have silly names and ugly uniforms.

As I mentioned before, if you're the kind of person who wants a highly detailed in-depth baseball game, Flick Baseball isn't the game for you. Everything in Flick Baseball seems to be optimized for quick pick up and play sessions that focuses more on being fun than overly technical or difficult.

Eventually, Flick Baseball will be available in two flavors: The "Pro" version that is available today, and a free version sponsored by Chevy that is being put together by Small Planet which is still waiting to be approved by Apple. It will retain all the core gameplay elements, but you'll be missing out on things like season mode and team customization.

App Store Link: Flick Baseball Pro, $2.99

TouchArcade Rating

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  • Crimsonic21

    Flick Baseball Pro - FTW!!!!

    We've worked long and hard on this game so definitely feel free to grab it and let us know what you think!

    Also, if you've got some doubts.. the Chevy sponsored version should be releasing shortly which will allow you to try it for absolutely free!

    Let us know what you think at support @ freeverse . com !!!

  • Crimsonic21

    Flick Baseball Pro - FTW!!!!

    We've worked long and hard on this game so definitely feel free to grab it and let us know what you think!

    Also, if you've got some doubts.. the Chevy sponsored version should be releasing shortly which will allow you to try it for absolutely free!

    Let us know what you think at support @ freeverse . com !!!

  • Jonas

    You said of sorts twice in the opening paragraph HODAPP

  • http://Fyad Jonas

    You said of sorts twice in the opening paragraph HODAPP

  • http://hawks12thman.webs.com hawks12thman

    I was hoping that it'd be an in-depth and realistic baseball sim, doesn't seem it's want I'm looking for from reading this though. I've been playing Com2Us' 9 Innings for quite a while now, guess I'll stick with that.

  • http://hawks12thman.webs.com hawks12thman

    I was hoping that it'd be an in-depth and realistic baseball sim, doesn't seem it's want I'm looking for from reading this though. I've been playing Com2Us' 9 Innings for quite a while now, guess I'll stick with that.

  • Mr Slinky Spring

    TA- Sorry to go off piste here- Can I just say thanks for highlighting the sale on Space Miner the other day.. I've been playing (plenty of) Iphone games since day dot, but somehow I managed to miss this! Thank God I didn't though as I think it has to be my favourite ever Iphone game- especially with the 3gs graphical update!
    Well done devs- more please!

    • Cyggie

      Can I just say hello to my mom? :P

  • Mr Slinky Spring

    TA- Sorry to go off piste here- Can I just say thanks for highlighting the sale on Space Miner the other day.. I've been playing (plenty of) Iphone games since day dot, but somehow I managed to miss this! Thank God I didn't though as I think it has to be my favourite ever Iphone game- especially with the 3gs graphical update!
    Well done devs- more please!

    • Cyggie

      Can I just say hello to my mom? :P

  • pacfika

    This looks exactly the right kind of balance between realistic and arcade for me , am still playing warpgate but will get this too.

  • pacfika

    This looks exactly the right kind of balance between realistic and arcade for me , am still playing warpgate but will get this too.

  • Crunc

    Looks fun. I'll wait for the Chevy sponsored version to first try it for free, though.

  • Crunc

    Looks fun. I'll wait for the Chevy sponsored version to first try it for free, though.

  • JC

    I'm looking forward to seeing how this compares to BS 2010.

  • JC

    I'm looking forward to seeing how this compares to BS 2010.

  • drunknbass

    is it me or do the textures look pretty shat quality?

  • drunknbass

    is it me or do the textures look pretty shat quality?

  • Wykey

    First impression is that it's very sluggish - like playing in treacle. I'm on a 3GS - haven't restarted after the install though, so I'll try that and add a note at the end if it gets resolved.

    Graphics are ok, more than good enough in my opinion, providing the gameplay is up to standard.

    But I understand there are those who might demand HD, and if I did, then I'd think they're blurred and a bit forced (there's a read motion trail that follows a hit ball through the air. The motion trail stays the same, and so it looks odd, it doesn't portray motion, it looks like the ball has a tail.

    I'm probably being unfair in the comparison, but the fluidity, speed and sense of motion that 3D Home Run Battle gives me, I think is a massive part of it's attraction. As I see the pitches swerving into home base, I tilt and lift the phone, and almost feel a surge as I tap the screen to smash the ball. It's not quite here with Flick. It's a bit stilted and understated - it doesn't quite have the same sense of occassion. As another example, the stadium noise seems to be a steady low almost white noise. The play caller sounds dead right - like he could be calling a game on US radio or a TV channel there, he does repeat himself, but he's accurate (he doesn't call line drives as fly-balls or anything like that).

    The crunch of a home-run fits perfectly, but a standard 'hit' sounds a little thin and lightweight. The chiming in of the stadium organist when it gets to 2 strikes and the bottom of an inning is a nice attention to detail - it could do with being a bit louder though (as could the crowd noise).

    Would also like to see a little more control over the players - they run to the next base automatically, and they slide automatically - you can send them to the next base, or recall them should you wish, but again they seem to respond slowly. I'd quite like to make a runner sprint, or take responsibility for his sliding in, maybe with a "Bigs" style mini-game for close calls.

    The catching is a nice touch, and fits nicely with the flow of the gameplay.

    So onto pitching.

    Pitching involved selecting the pitch, and then tilting the device slowly so that the targetting ring is within the strike zone. But that's it. The inclusion of a swing'ometer, an effort gauge, or some other involvement in the pitching other than tapping, tilting and tapping again would be something I'd very much like to see (maybe even as DLC).

    Finally, I'd like to think there might be scope for a career mode, or a virtual player mode in the future. Taking a representation of me into the bigs through training sub-games and growing my talents via match experience earned, would be a huge unique selling point. Baseball Superstars has a career mode, albeit quite a simple one.

    To conclude - I like Flick Baseball a lot, I'm not sure I'd recommend it as ouch as I'd like to at the moment though. Over and above any gameplay tweaks (which I understand are my own personal preference) the sluggish gameplay makes it an effort to play. It feels like there's a delay between my taps and the on-screen response. So I'm generally positive, and I'll definitely be playing it a lot, but I do think it could have been a lot better. It's got all of the ingredients, it just needs a bit of a polish in my opinion.

    I'm going to do a re-test performance wise after re-booting the iphone, and hopefully that'll help.

    I'll report back. (Sorry if that's a bit rambling, I'm trying to get it all down before I forget it!)

  • Wykey

    First impression is that it's very sluggish - like playing in treacle. I'm on a 3GS - haven't restarted after the install though, so I'll try that and add a note at the end if it gets resolved.

    Graphics are ok, more than good enough in my opinion, providing the gameplay is up to standard.

    But I understand there are those who might demand HD, and if I did, then I'd think they're blurred and a bit forced (there's a read motion trail that follows a hit ball through the air. The motion trail stays the same, and so it looks odd, it doesn't portray motion, it looks like the ball has a tail.

    I'm probably being unfair in the comparison, but the fluidity, speed and sense of motion that 3D Home Run Battle gives me, I think is a massive part of it's attraction. As I see the pitches swerving into home base, I tilt and lift the phone, and almost feel a surge as I tap the screen to smash the ball. It's not quite here with Flick. It's a bit stilted and understated - it doesn't quite have the same sense of occassion. As another example, the stadium noise seems to be a steady low almost white noise. The play caller sounds dead right - like he could be calling a game on US radio or a TV channel there, he does repeat himself, but he's accurate (he doesn't call line drives as fly-balls or anything like that).

    The crunch of a home-run fits perfectly, but a standard 'hit' sounds a little thin and lightweight. The chiming in of the stadium organist when it gets to 2 strikes and the bottom of an inning is a nice attention to detail - it could do with being a bit louder though (as could the crowd noise).

    Would also like to see a little more control over the players - they run to the next base automatically, and they slide automatically - you can send them to the next base, or recall them should you wish, but again they seem to respond slowly. I'd quite like to make a runner sprint, or take responsibility for his sliding in, maybe with a "Bigs" style mini-game for close calls.

    The catching is a nice touch, and fits nicely with the flow of the gameplay.

    So onto pitching.

    Pitching involved selecting the pitch, and then tilting the device slowly so that the targetting ring is within the strike zone. But that's it. The inclusion of a swing'ometer, an effort gauge, or some other involvement in the pitching other than tapping, tilting and tapping again would be something I'd very much like to see (maybe even as DLC).

    Finally, I'd like to think there might be scope for a career mode, or a virtual player mode in the future. Taking a representation of me into the bigs through training sub-games and growing my talents via match experience earned, would be a huge unique selling point. Baseball Superstars has a career mode, albeit quite a simple one.

    To conclude - I like Flick Baseball a lot, I'm not sure I'd recommend it as ouch as I'd like to at the moment though. Over and above any gameplay tweaks (which I understand are my own personal preference) the sluggish gameplay makes it an effort to play. It feels like there's a delay between my taps and the on-screen response. So I'm generally positive, and I'll definitely be playing it a lot, but I do think it could have been a lot better. It's got all of the ingredients, it just needs a bit of a polish in my opinion.

    I'm going to do a re-test performance wise after re-booting the iphone, and hopefully that'll help.

    I'll report back. (Sorry if that's a bit rambling, I'm trying to get it all down before I forget it!)

  • Wykey

    By way of an update, a reboot seems to have made things more smooth - still feel it's a little sluggish though.

    I like that the Cuba Pirates play the Star Spangled Banner before their games though :)

  • Wykey

    By way of an update, a reboot seems to have made things more smooth - still feel it's a little sluggish though.

    I like that the Cuba Pirates play the Star Spangled Banner before their games though :)