25 years later, Midway’s lost “MLB Jam” arcade game has been found
Includes oral history of unreleased Power-Up Baseball: Cool trackballs, bad business.
By the end of the 1990s, you couldn’t throw a quarter in most malls without hitting an NBA Jam or NFL Blitz cabinet. “Arcade sports” became a full-blown sensation, and hockey, soccer, and tennis received their own high-speed arcade conversions. But that list of American sports sure seems to be missing its slice of arcade apple pie, doesn’t it?
You may have wondered for years why baseball never got an “MLB Jam” equivalent during that golden arcade era. Turns out, the sport got close. Thanks to the Video Game History Foundation, a new ROM has been unearthed for 1996’s lost Midway arcade game, Power-Up Baseball, and some of its former devs have explained what exactly happened with its development and cancellation.
“All parts should go together without forcing. You must remember that the parts you are reassembling were disassembled by you. Therefore, if you can’t get them together again, there must be a reason. By all means, do not use a hammer.” —IBM Manual, 1925