World Cup Soccer (Macmillan) Review | Amstrad Action - Everygamegoing

Amstrad Action

World Cup Soccer
By Macmillan
Amstrad CPC464

Published in Amstrad Action #3

World Cup Soccer

Our second football strategy game of the month simulates the action in the World Cup, even if it is about six months too early on the scene. It's a mixture of strategy and arcade action as try to get your team through the various stages of the World Cup finals and lift the trophy.

The packaging includes a booklet on football in general and more specifically the history of the World Cup and its stars in previous years. Having absorbed all the history, laws, skills, roles, tactics and characters of the sport you can get into the computer program.

You start with the choice of warming up or playing the tournament and you'd be well advised to warm up first as this is where you can practise the arcade skills needed to win matches. There are two main sequences which simulate shooting and heading skills. Shooting is a sort of Breakout style game in which you control a boot at the bottom of the good performance is necessary.

When you've finished warming up you can go into the competition proper and choos one of the many teams available. Once you've been told where the finals are being held and which pool you're in you can name your team which consists of a squad of 22 players.

You're initially placed in a pool of four teams and have to play each of them in a bid to reach the next round. Your team has three qualities, skills, strength and stamina, which combine to make up their overall ability. 11 players have to be picked to form the best attack, midfield and defence that you can. Close attention must be paid to the other team to see its strengths and weaknesses but with all the studying in the world you're eventually reliant on the players and a bit of luck.

The first half is computer-controlled and as the minutes tick rapidly away goals, injuries and sendings off are announced. The occasional penalty will also crop up and depending on whether it's for or against you, you get to choose whether you shoot or dive, left or right. The action is then animated much as for the heading screen.

The second half is for the player to control as it is composed of the two arcade sequences. Combining the two halves together gives you the final result and all figures are updated accordingly. The competition continues through like this until the final although getting there will be a really hard task due to the strength of the other teams.

The whole package is very slick and the game very enjoyable. The graphic sequences are very nicely done and well thought out and all the action is accompanied by an optional tune that is very pleasant. It's a much shorter game to play than Big League Soccer and instead of providing a game that could last forever, it gives a more action-packed and fast-moving game.

Good News

P. Very good animation and graphics. P. Good strategy element. P. Very difficult to beat. P. Great presentation of game and booklet.

Bad News

N. Difficult to evaluate how well you're doing at the arcade sequences. N. Once the cup is won, you may not want to play any more.

Second Opinion

As a foretaste of the summer's action, this program is very entertaining. For those who find the football strategy games too time-consuming - after all, it can take a long time to get Rochdale to the top of Division 1 - it is a welcome change. The arcade sections are very pretty indeed and give some gentle relief from the brainwork. Non football-fanatics should find the accompanying booklet interesting and a genuine aid to doing well in the game.

Bob Wade

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