Winnie and Pooh’s Home Run Derby
Yesterday, my friend pointed me to a flash game called 「くまのプーさんのホームランダービー！」It’s Winnie the Pooh playing baseball against his friends in the Hundred Acre Wood in a game made by Disney Japan. Despite the cute, childish exterior, underneath lies a sophisticated game engine with the difficulty that which requires advanced brain power to beat. The pitchers throw with various techniques and in various speeds, and Tigger can make his balls invisible, so it takes some sophisticated skill to get homeruns. For Owl’s balls, one must attain a Zen-like calm and a perception of time that makes the zigzagging seem like a trivial thing. Being good at Kendo helps. Being able to perceive moments between instants in Kendo and having good reflexes will help you get past levels. Just click the button, swing the bat, when the white aligns with the green on the ghostbat. For Tigger’s balls, even though his balls go invisible halfway, the direction and velocity remains the same, so one must imagine where the ball is based on the two factors. Rabbit’s easy; his balls may suddenly speed up, but the new speed is just another speed.
Because of how people think this is pretty hard, and how much fun this is, regardless of the Winnie the Pooh exterior, I would call this Game of the Year, despite it being released in 2010. I have to add, it’s a good hark back to the good old days of video gaming, when the games were hard and relied heavily on the skill of the player to beat the game.