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Homerun Battle 2 Review: A Pathetic Excuse for a Sequel

Com2us has been one of my favorite developers in the App Store, especially with how they’re very interactive in the community along with coming out with great games.  Chronicles of Inotia 2 was one of my favorite games, and others such as Homerun Battle 3D, the first of the series, was a lot of fun to play.

So when they released Homerun Battle 2, I was quite excited, given my previous enjoyment with Homerun Battle 3D.  But when I opened up the “sequel,” I felt almost cheated, ripped off in a way.  And do you want to know why?  It’s the EXACT SAME GAME.  There’s nothing in here, from what I remember, that’s different.  It’s still the same online play and the same offline play; the user interface is a little different, and there’s a new mode on the offline play, but other than that, the elements are the same.

What’s even worse is that now they’re starting to make you buy outfits and such through in-app purchase.  There are so many bats, gloves, hats, etc. that are accessible only through in-app purchase that it almost makes me feel like the game is won by anyone who has the most money.  From what I’ve seen, there’s no way to earn stars except through buying them, and the outfits that they do have for gold balls are outrageously priced.

All in all, this is one pathetic excuse for a sequel.

Likes

UI Improvements: I’ll have to hand it to Com2us: the user interface improvements do look nice.  While it is a bit slight, it looks a lot better.

Universal and GameCenter: This was something that was missing in the first one, and I’m a huge fan of any developer who is willing to make an app universal along with adding some GameCenter achievements.  No matter how much I hate this game (which I’ll get to soon), I have to put this in the like section.

Dislikes

Advertisements: It’s great that you’re having a fire sale and all, but you don’t have to have the news banners take up nearly a quarter of my screen.  While I was provided a promo code to review this game, if I was a user and paid five bucks for it, I’d be furious.  There are a lot of games that have that little news banner, but it only shows up when you press on it, and it doesn’t take up a large portion of the screen.  It’s just an annoyance that shouldn’t be in a $4.99 game.

SAME EXACT THING: This is the part that makes me nearly furious.  You can’t call a game a sequel when there’s literally nothing that has changed.  There’s one new game mode in the offline play, but other than that, the online play is nearly exactly the same, the outfits and such are the same, and even some of the UI elements are exactly the same.  You’re basically paying $4.99 for GameCenter achievements and new main menu buttons, which is inexcusable given the fact that other sequels, such as Zombieville 2, provide complete UI overhauls, gameplay changes, and stylistic changes.  To see that Com2us named this “Homerun Battle 2″ and have it be nothing close to even being a sequel makes me quite mad, and they’re basically ripping off people by selling the same game but marketing it as a sequel so that more people buy it.

I’m sorry Com2us, but this is the type of thing that is the difference between good developers and bad developers.  When you’re cheating buyers by saying that it’s a sequel when it’s actually just the same game, I take offense to that.

In-app purchases: In-app purchases… in a $4.99 game?  Now I understand when those in-app purchases don’t really matter to the game, such as Modern Combat 3, which has in-app purchases but doesn’t force you to purchase them in anyway.  But Com2us has implemented a sort of freemium model to an already premium-priced game by putting in “stars,” which can only be earned through buying them with real-world money.  I shouldn’t have to pay in order to completely unlock all of the accesses to the game.  Along with that, online play should be fair in that all players have the same chance to win: it shouldn’t be predicated on who has the most money to spend on in-app purchases.  Basically, whoever is willing to spend a lot of money on this game is going to be the best, and whoever doesn’t have money to spend is left out and will always be milling around the lower level players.

Homerun Battle 2, as you can see, makes me quite furious.  And disappointed.  And shocked.  I’ve beta-tested a lot of Com2us’s games before, and they used to be all about the consumer and how they can make their games more appealing to the consumer.  But when they put in absurd in-app purchases, sell a game that’s nearly the same thing as the one before it, and even have banners of their own news take up a large portion of the screen, I can’t help but be disappointed.  Com2us, I have lost all respect for you, as this “sequel” is, as the title suggests, pathetic.

The game itself is fun though, so go on and pick up the first one.  It’s on sale for $0.99 and doesn’t have such an absurd in-app purchase system in it.

Homerun Battle 2 was developed by Com2us, and I played through version 1.0.1 on my iPhone 4s and iPad 2.  The price is $4.99.



  1. Liquid530 on Thursday 24, 2011

    I totally agree with you, it’s a rip off…. Great review by the way…..

  2. DevilDog on Thursday 24, 2011

    I am 100% behind this review. I do appreciate the smoother flow of graphics and the Burning mode is a bit interesting. But a total dislike is that very quickly, your character becomes limited… that is if you’re not willing to pay-to-play! I think that the gold stars should be achieved by reaching milestones. If Com2us is that desparate or gluten for money, raise the price of purchase rather than milking more and more from their customers! From a software developer aspect this is borderline “crippleware”.

  3. bobby carreiro on Thursday 24, 2011

    game is fun but i have to agree with the first review. the stars aspect to the game was difficult to understand from the beginning until i realized that they couldnt be won through different achievements throughout the game i.e. goldballs. I like the fact that u can have 3 different characters and the new stadiums are a plus but i would really like some stadiums that are based on classic major league ballparks, even if you had to buy them. Maybe Com2us could make some changes to the current hr battle 2 and offer it to people who paid money for it for free or a reduced price.

  4. daw on Thursday 24, 2011

    I like the game. Hate the extra money that you folks want to charge for extras!! What is up with the stars?? do they mean anything?? These stars should be free and obtaine through levels of achievement. Just look at it we paid nearly 5$ to purchase the game and you want to rip us off more?? To reach levels higher with gold balls is far to high and difficult to obtain, more bouns process should be incorporated with the game.

    Must say that your assistanc group for repairs and fixes do a quite good job.

  5. Top iPhone Games of 2011 on Thursday 24, 2011

    I agree… premium priced games should not have any ads whatsoever! It’s all about making money without caring for the user experience…of course this honest review is the exact reason why you would want to avoid this.

  6. Harry Styles on Thursday 24, 2011

    It’s really sad to come across developers that are so desperate for new ideas that they start mimicking their previous titles! I had a go at the game and there was indeed very little difference from Homerun Battle 3D. Really hope they come up with something better soon though!