Kemco planned to release a successor to Virtual League Baseball, or Virtual Professional Baseball ’95 as it was called in Japan, in March 1996, called simply Virtual League Baseball 2, or Virtual Professional Baseball ’96. But the game was ultimately cancelled due to the Virtual Boy being discontinued. A single screenshot of the Japanese version is known to exist, which has been printed in various Japanese magazines. The North American version, Virtual League Baseball 2, has received a “Kids to Adults” rating from the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB). We can therefore assume that the game has been finished.
As a certified game of the Nippon Professional Baseball Organization, the Japanese version featured all 12 teams of the highest level of professional baseball in Japan, with the latest player stats, based on the final results of the 1995 pennant season. According to the list of competitors in the 1996 NPB season, that would be the following teams:
- Yomiuri Giants
- Chunichi Dragons
- Hiroshima Toyo Carp
- Yakult Swallows
- Yokohama BayStars
- Hanshin Tigers
- Orix BlueWave
- Nippon-Ham Fighters
- Seibu Lions
- Kintetsu Buffaloes
- Chiba Lotte Marines
- Fukuoka Daiei Hawks
These are exactly the same teams as in the 1995 Japanese version. In addition to these 12 real-world teams, there are also “unique, original teams”.
The North American version likely featured national teams again.
While the core gameplay hasn’t changed much compared to the predecessor, the main updates seem to have been made in terms of content as well as graphical appearance. Previews of the Japanese version mentioned the game making better usage of the Virtual Boy’s 3D capabilities. Furthermore, the Japanese version has realistically shaped players as in the North American version, instead of the predecessor’s super deformed ones. At least one new stadium had been added as well, judging from the ceiling of Tokyo Dome stadium that can be seen in the screenshot.
Undeniably the most exciting new feature of Virtual Professional Baseball ’96 was a 2 player competitive mode, allowing two human players to play against each other using the (also unreleased) GameLink cable.