Tour De France
By Activision
Commodore 64/128

Published in Computer & Video Games #48

Tour De France

Activision's record with successful sports simulations is impressive - Decathlon, Tennis and now Tour De France. And what a tour de force it is!

Graphics, animation and attention to race details are fantastically realistic. Even road signs and cheering spectators are included in this painstakingly accurate sports simulation.

You can begin the game by either choosing a practice circuit or a competition option. In the competition option at least two players must take part and you may choose to complete one etape - a single stage in the Tour de France - or race the entire circuit across France.

Tour De France

After having chosen the circuit that you wish to race, you must then choose from the range of different bikes and coloured strips that you will wear during the race. Each individual bike has its own qualities and weaknesses - so choosing carefully is important.

In the great tradition of games like Decathlon, the forward movement of the bike is created by you moving the joystick from side to side with increasing speed. You can steer the bike using the fire button and change gear and brake by either pushing the joystick forwards or backwards.

Getting into the game is relatively simple once you have completed the preliminary questions and options that every Activision game seems to contain. Controlling the bike is not that difficult - unless you want to go fast around a corner or are trying to change gear cycling up a steep hill.

Once you have mastered the basics of good computer cycling, Tour De France becomes an exciting and enthralling game to play with a friend or group of friends. I imagine it would lose some of its magic if it was used only as a single player game, though.

Tour De France is a slick and very professional sports simulation and deserves to grace the software collection of any sports enthusiast.