TC is the latest and greatest, biggest and best, love-'em and leave-'em-est. 'Hellow pop pickers', but not 'alf'est football management game E&J have done yet, and they've done a few in their time. Check this month's cover tapes for one of their earlier efforts.
Before I start shouting about how good this one is, I had better tell you the bad point. It's very, very slow. Why? Because it's written in BASIC. You'd think that this far on in the Spectrum's biorhythmic cycle everybody would be completely fluent in machine code, but tis not to be.
If there's one direction football managerial games are moving toward, it's size. Not only does TC contain five divisions (four league, one nonleague), each with twenty teams, it also stores fairly detailed records on over 1,500 players. (That's 15 on each team). But that's only the tip of the iceberg.
All the usual options are offered. You know the routine by now. Save, load, display squad/table/fixtures, extra training, view/play next match, transfer market.
A team member's record is built up thus. Name, ability rating (out of five), fitness and form rating (out of five), age, number of games participated in for current club, goals scored.
When it comes down to the nitty gritty of a match the balance is worked out as a comparison of total scores. In your team, all the defenders have their ability ratings added to make a defence score. The same goes for midfield and attack. The entire team's form and fitness score is added to make an overall score.
The match is played as in Football Director. The computer counts the minutes and should anything happen, like a goal being scored the computer flashes up the relevant info as it happens.
Now the bit I've been dying to tell you about. The Transfer Market. In every other football management game I've seen that has a transfer player option, the computer gives you a choice of two or three players and should you want any, you can put in a bid for them. This often results in you waiting for ages for that ideal player. Wait no longer! In TC, if you spot a player you want in any of the other 99 teams, put in a bid for him and depending on the price you offer, the opposing manager will say yay or nay on the spot.
TC describes itself as being the Ultimate Football game, and it's not all that far off.
Label: E&J Software
Reviewer: Tony Dillon
Darn good footbally whatsit, but why is it written in BASIC?