US Gold Ltd
1986
Sport: Action
£9.95
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
Multiple schemes (see individual downloads)

14
Chris Bourne

The release of Wold Cup Carnival coincides nicety with this year's Mexican extravaganza. Unlike the real thing, this game is played by two players who compete against each other, or by one player against the computer. The program also allows up to nine players to select teams from a list of 24 Works Cup candidates.

The game begins with the players running out onto the field. About one third of the pitch is on screen at any one time, scrolling sideways as the players run down towards the goal. You only have control over the player nearest the ball, and he changes colour slightly when in possession of the ball. Kick offs and goal saves are all automatically executed.

The score is displayed at the top of the screen along with a time limit. The game is played over 90 minutes, but this isn't real time each game actually takes about three minutes to complete with an allowance for extra time at the end. Apart from the main match there is also a practice mode where you can practice ball control, penalty shooting and saving. There is also a practice match option so you can have a dummy run before going on to the real thing.

The complete package includes all sorts of World Cup memorabilia such as a wall chart with stickers to plot the progress of the real thing this summer, and a sew-on badge.

There is no strategy involved in World Cup Carnival and players cannot be allocated to positions according to their particular skills the computer sorts all that out, so the only thing you have to worry about is controlling the players on the pitch and trying to score goals.

CRITICISM

'World Cup Carnival is an appalling game and it's a disgrace to see a big software house like US Gold releasing it. The layout of the football pitch is as basic as you can get - no centre circle, no penalty area, no six yard box and no supports for the goals. The graphics are very bad, with footballers who would look out of place in one of the first Spectrum games. The clock counts down and not up which is very confusing and the teams don't even swap around for extra time. US Gold have stuck to the bog standard Spectrum character set. I couldn't find any music to listen to even though there is an on/off option for music! All I can say about this game is there is a nice whistle effect and the packaging is great. This game is awful; avoid it at all costs.'

'This is the worst football simulation I have ever seen. Playing the game is a little too easy unless you happen to have a colour TV or monitor - when the colours used are very bright and eye strain occurs after a few games. Controlling your man is not difficult, although sometimes the computers choice of the 'man nearest the ball' is a little strange. The graphics are very poor, the players only have two stages of animation and them am many bad attribute problems. The players am a bit better Sound is poor; if you're lucky you might hear the odd whistle being blown. On the whole I wouldn't be too happy if I forked out two quid for this one, let alone a tanner. The pack of World Cup bumph makes up for it a little, but not enough for me to recommend it to any one.'

'Not exactly a mega-game this. In fact it's not much of a game at all. The game itself is sub-standard, but all the freebies are quite good; but then, they have to be, because I don't think many people will buy the package for the game itself. Maybe football freaks will enjoy it, but I can't see anyone flipping over it. The colour is initially quite helpful, but when the dashes start making the players disappear - things get a bit out of hand! Overall, it's not an awful game - US Gold have made a lot out of the World Cup deal, what with all the accompanying bits, but the game itself lacks any real outstanding elements.'

COMMENTS
Control keys
Joystick: Kempston, Cursor
Keyboard play: okay
Use of colour: severe clashes at times
Graphics: far from 'state of the art'
Sound: pardon?
Skill levels: one
Screens: scrolling window for match, plus penalty screens
General Rating: Nice freebies, shame about the recycled two year old game!

32%
25%
19%
30%
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26%

Screenshot Text

Algeria play Scotland on the screen of WORLD CUP CARNIVAL. Scotland are doing rather better on screen than they are for real...