The success of its India-specific titles like “Hanuman” and “Desi Adda” has persuaded Sony to launch another video game with a strong local flavour. And on the principle, that you can never go wrong or lose money, with a strong cricket connection, it has just released “Street Cricket Champions” for its own PlayStation2 and PlayStation Portable platforms. The game has been created for Sony by a Mumbai-based developer, Trine Games.
It offers three play levels: Exhibition, Tournament and Street League and one can choose from a selection of “galli” or street corner locales – outside a dhaba; in the shadow of Kolkatta’s Victoria Memorial; a school playground – or on a sunny beach in the West Indies. It allows multiple players to simulate the sort of cricket, young Indians are used to playing – including patently non-text-book shots, reverse cross bat, over the wicketkeeper’s head and all. Bowlers can morph from pacer to spinner within the same over. Players try to score run points, through various cricket shots, batting trick shots, shot faking, blocking, diving for the base and other unconventional tricks
Teams can be as small as five-a-side and you have a choice of ten players who take to the field in the sort of non conventional attire that kids in India are used to. Smash sixes can land on cars or smash windows. Hat tricks are rather easier to achieve than in the real stadium game and you can also take on ‘nukkad’ or street teams from 9 international locations.
The package includes some international-style events as well – which makes for a somewhat uneasy mix. The aim seems to ensure that the asking price of Rs 499 for the PS2 and Rs 699 for PSP version, is perceived to be ‘paisa vasool’ or good value by the targeted customer - Anand Parthasarathy
This review also appears in the current ( Jan 10-16 2011) issue of "The Week" magazine www.the-week.com
January 8 2011