Subbuteo (Goliath Games/Electronic Zoo) Review | Zzap - Everygamegoing


By Electronic Zoo
Commodore 64/128

Published in Zzap #68


Look, I know footballers don't really have round bases under their legs but Subbuteo is taken very seriously by some - it's even got its own World Cup.

With the computer game at least there's no danger of some clumsy idiot treading on your players or giant dogs running onto the pitch! The rules are the same with one team keeping possession until they miss the ball or knock to an opposing player. Players take it in turns to do their flicks (including defensive ones). The plan view pitch can be scrolled vertically and a player selected. You can then aim the flick with a rotating cursor and select power and left/right spin. All this must be done within a time limit.

Options include one/two-player games, choice of formation and match time, plus an eight-player league.



Computer Subbuteo has all the arcade action of a game of draughts with even less intellectual stimulus. The neat little men of the board game have been replaced by chronic graphics, with non-existent sound and a cursor which is much too subtle. Sending your 'men' shooting across the pitch is as exciting as listening to Trevor Brooking.

If you ask me, Striker was always the better board game, with its kicking figures, but computer Subbuteo beats the real thing for dullness anyway.


I must admit I thought Goliath had got this all wrong with the players taking it in strict turns to flick. Still, though it's nowhere near as hectic (or as much fun) as the board game, it does capture the strong strategic element of Subbuteo with all the proper rules like offside and defensive flicks to block the opposition's path to the ball.


The skill in flicking is also well implemented - once mastered, you can do some truly amazing swerves - and at least you won't need to insure your fingernails!


Presentation 65%
One/two players, league which can be saved.

Graphics 20%
Overhead view restricts players to mere circles while the selection cursor is hard to see.

Sound 12%
A few pathetic beeps here and there.

Hookability 43%
Hardly exciting but tactically sound.

Lastability 40%
Becomes boring after a few games [Moves! - Stu]

Overall 41%
Totally lacking the board game's fun element.