Manchester United: The Double
Just about every review of Manchester United: Premier League Champions (M.UTD: PLC) came to the conclusion that it wasn't bad, but not as good as a certain game by Sensible, even though it looked and played very similarly.
Since then, we have had the overtly Sensi-esque Football Glory from Kompart, which also lacked that vital ingredient; whilst there's Striker '95 from Warner; the graphically superb Actua Soccer from Gremlin Interactive; and the distinctly console-like Action Soccer from Ubisoft to look forward to come the summer. Whether Sensible will actually manage to get the pc version of Sensible World of Soccer working properly come the start of the new season is anyone's guess. Apparently, it's still having problems with the 3D isometric view and the speed, so there's a good chance it may include a European Championship '96 option by the time it finally makes it onto the pc.
License to milk
Krisalis on the other hand, didn't seem to have any problems with adding a 3D isometric viewpoint, or the speed for that matter. It even took it upon itself to add a full-team management game with just about every team you have ever heard of (Accrington Stanley, Harriers, Kidderminster etc., etc.); an up-to-date transfer market; and a rather splendid game editor which lets you fiddle with the extensive stats of every player and team in the vast data-base. In fact, it's so versatile that you could, say, re-create the Scottish League (if the mood took you) whilst you can change players names, their appearance and even edit home and away kits, so you're never out of date. The latter feature being an especially useful addition when you bear in mind Manchester United's penchant for new strips.
Although there is a fully up-and-running transfer market, player values are based on how valuable the computer thinks players are, rather than current commercial values (there's an actual value and a recommended bit). This can lead to some rather amusing anomalies, and if you don't use a playei for some time, his value drops, which means you can pick up some bargains. As before, the level of presentation is high and the menu system, though not as instantly accessible as Championship Manager, is more than adequate, especially when you consider that M.UTD: PLC is primarily an arcade game, rather than a simulation. You can choose to just play as a manager, but the fun really is in playing each match out yourself.
M.UTD: PLC is not as comprehensive as the play editor featured in the Amiga version of Sensible World of Soccer, but it still enables you to play the way you want to and save various formations and tactics for rainy days. You even start to use your wingers, rather than banging it up the middle all the time (unless, of course, you're a Wimbledon supporter), which so often becomes the only winning tactic in Sensi.
And the result after extra time? Well, it's pot a cash in (now there's a first for Man United); more an improved version of what was originally an average game.
Download Manchester United: The Double
- PC compatible
- Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP