The Force (Argus Press) Review | ZX Computing - Everygamegoing

ZX Computing

The Force
By Argus Press
Spectrum 48K

Published in ZX Computing #28

The Force

Congratulations, Sir, on your promotion to Superintendent. After countless years plodding (no joke intended!) around the streets telling people where the Gents are, you have finally made the grade. In your new role, you will have less contact with the general public, nor will you be able to spend hours at the pub during lunch time!

As Super, you must both maintain a satisfactory level of community goodwill, and police your area efficiently enough to stop any massed rioting. Thankfully, you have been provided with three manuals, each of which give you clues and advice on how to make the most of your precarious position.

Argus Press Software's latest game, The Force, is not one that will appeal wildly to arcade fans, yet it can be really fascinating to play. Your first task is to plan ahead for the weekly shifts. Although you cannot be expected to control each officer on a minute-by-minute basis, you are expected to have made sure that there are enough men to cope with any eventualities.

In each different area that you control, there are areas where more police are likely to be needed at specific times; Saturday afternoon at the football ground needs crowd control, and you will be expected to have checked your diary and planned ahead.

You must also be able to differentiate between when you will need certain types of police. I found that cars were needed most during the night shift (4pm to midnight), presumably to cope with the drunken drivers!

As well as coping with theft, muggings, burglaries and the like, you must take on the more mundane tasks such as ensuring the traffic flows smoothly around town, and for this you will be rewarded in the way of popularity - as long as everything keeps moving.

Thankfully, your predecessors have left you a series of notes which detail the most efficient ways of crime prevention, but sometimes a compromise is necessary, and the decision rests on your head...

Using a joystick/keyboard driven pointer, a la Apple Macintosh, means that playing is very simple, and this combined with reasonable graphics means The Force is one of Argus' best recent releases. If you do well - something I never quite managed! - I am assured that you receive promotion, but unfortunately the public never took a liking to me. Is this a reflection on my policy of banning football?

If you fancy a game that stretches more than your joystick, The Force could well be for you. I found it enthralling, though fortunately I can't vouch for its realism!!!