Computer Gamer

Graham Gooch's Test Cricket
By Audiogenic
Commodore 64

Published in Computer Gamer #5

Graham Gooch's Test Cricket

Distributed by Audiogenic but actually written by Supersoft, Gooch's Cricket attempts to simulate the current test series between England and Australia.

The game can be playe in three ways, one or two player simulation mode and one player arcade mode. I started my series with a simulation march against the computer.

As in the other modes your first task is to choose your team from a possible twenty players. Rule number one is to select Graham Gooch. The others aren't so important, except perhaps Underwood who seems to average five wickets per innings.

I won the toss and so put the Aussies in and managed to bowl them out for 243. Then Graham Gooch strode out to bat. After two hours, England were a measley 400 for 2 with Gooch 250 not out. I then decided to leave them to it and got some sleep to return later only to find that not only had the innings closed at 601, Australia were all out again leaving me only 27 to get to win.

In theory I should have used the joystick to determine such things as batting tactics and bowling styles but I soon felt that it wasn't having much effect (sixes were being scored by batsmen playing defensively).

Adding a second player had little effect to change what turned out to be an accurate simulation of cricket. Perhaps not the way Audiogenic intend as it turned into the game that you could play while watching TV or going to be pub only returning occasionally to see how the match was progressing.

The arcade mode is the complete opposite as you have absolute control over the result. By selecting the computer skill level, you can finish your innings in two overs or guarantee centuries for batsmen who can hit fours off the bat, pads, legs, knees or armpits.

Although first impressive, the games graphics quickly become tiresome. For after a few hours at the crease you find out that the players only have a set number of strokes and the fielders run in set patterns.

Unfortunately this game will disappoint the cricket novice and expert alike. In fact, the program's sole highlight is its loading system. For if it detects an error it will ask you to rewind the tape so that it can retry the faulty blocks. It's a shame that the game isn't really worth the effort.