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Not Known
Strategy: Management
ZX Spectrum 48K

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Rosetta McLeod
Chris Bourne

A simulation aimed at Business Studies students, Print Shop covers a period of 12 weeks in which the student becomes sole proprietor of a small printing works. The prospective businessman Is asked to make judgements on the following: the number and category of staff to employ: the amount and type of paper to purchase: the quotation for each job and the scheduling of work in an optimum week. The objective is to produce a net profit of over £4,000 .n the first three months of trading, making decisions based on the weekly trading accounts, profit and loss, and balance sheets.

A great many factors must be taken into account when, for example, hiring staff. A supervisor must be employed for every five production staff, and new premises are required (at double the rent) when this number rises to ten. It has to be remembered that additional staff will be needed when orders start to increase, but as it takes three weeks to train new employees, production will not increase immediately. It may therefore be necessary to contract out certain lobs.

This is a particularly good simulation, in which students have to make a large number of decisions after having assessed a wealth of information. The information is presented clearly both on the screen and in the brief accompanying notes. There are three levels of difficulty, but I'm afraid I wasn't even successful at the easiest of these - to be honest, I managed to incur losses, which resulted in the net assets becoming negative. The banker foreclosed and the business ceased'.

Print Shop certainly tests your business acumen to the full, and creates a feeling of true involvement in the world of commerce. An enjoyable and challenging program.


Control keys: clearly explained and kept as simple as possible
Keyboard play: very good
Graphics: sensible use of graphs and tables in most programs. The graphics in Airline are particularly good
Use of Colour: limited
General Rating: interesting and realistic simulations of different business situations. useful for encouraging the users to handle a wealth of different information.

Not Rated