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Euro 96 is a simulation of the European 96 football (soccer in North America) competition which is held every four years, two years before the "Mundial" (the World Cup). This year, England who hasn't won since 1966 is hosting the event. Euro 96 has all the participating teams in the competition available so that you can play all the different combinations with the simulator. The computer will draw a match and if you don't like it you can always redraw.
Euro 96 is a well made game with nearly all the needed features present. You can train with only your team on the pitch and an opponent's goalies, play friendly matches to check out the opposition, and even practice penalty shoots until you are ready to enter the competition.
The true 3D allows you to view the action throughout the game from any angle you choose with camera views such as far and goal line. This allows you to get a better in corners that are always a bit difficult with a normal point of view. There is also the possibility to superimpose a small radar on the screen that provides the position of all the players and the ball. This is indeed very useful for offsides.
In Euro 96 you can play in either low or high resolution graphics and the settings can greatly influence game's speed. If you prefer high resolution for a better visibility, some textures such as the sky, displaying numbers on the players, and the grass on the pitch can be removed to help speed up the game. Without all these options turned off, the game will still be quick enough to surprise your goalie, even on a slow PC.
Playing with Euro 96 is easy. Not only is the playability good, but the learning curve is quick enough to let you play with the game within a couple of minutes. The player holding the ball is clearly marked and when in position to shoot his marking will blink. If the offside rule annoys your tactics, you can change this rule and even change the booking to avoid collecting too many red cards for your "fair tackles". For the friendly games you can even pick the referee, they are described with parameters for vision and discipline. To fully enjoy the game, I vigorously recommend the use of a joystick to play as it is much easier to make all the special kicks such as disguised pass, chip shot, and power shot.
The sound effects in the game are excellent with sounds of the crowd that make you feel like being there in the stadium. The game features nearly 30,000 words of dialogue with the voice of Barry Davis, BBC 1's number one commentator.
Like any real coach you will have to choose the team's tactic and the position each one of them is going to play. There are some good defaults settings but they can be improved. Don't forget to check the games statistics to help you choose the replacements or the configuration of the team for the next games. One thing that I personally think is missing, is the levels of the opponent's teams. It is not at all possible to modify the team's strenght to weaker or stronger. Naturally all the teams are not alike, but I found it could have given an extra plus to the game.
After the game, you may use the unavoidable and enjoyable replays. You will see all your performances from almost wherever you like with five more cameras than in the action mode.
Finally, Euro 96 features multiplayer modes that allow two players to play through a serial link or a modem. Additionally for the lucky United Kingdom inhabitants, there is a possibility to play with the WIREPLAY network from British Telecom.
486 DX2-66 MHz or higher,
Min 8Mb memory,
MS-DOS 5.0 or later,
Hard drive with 26Mb of free space,
Double speed CD-ROM drive or faster,
VGA/SVGA Video graphic card (Vesa compatible),
Mouse required, joystick optional.
SoundBlaster (+Pro, 16, AWE32), Gravis UltraSound (+Max), Ensoniq Soundscape, Microsoft Sound System and 100% compatibles supported.
Windows 95 compatible in MS-DOS mode with 16-bit CD-ROM and mouse drivers installed.
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Gremlin Interactive Ltd.,
123 Mira Mar Ave, Suite 7,
Long Beach, CA, 90803.
Gremlin Interactive Ltd.,
2-4 Carver St,
Sheffield, S1 4FS
Web site: Gremlin Interactive
Email address: Gremlin Interactive