Released in 1984, League Soccer is a mail-order only game by Sophisticated Games designed to simulate a soccer season. The player is able to configure a league with between 2 and 24 teams of their choice. Each team is given a rating between 1 and 9 which will affect their ability throughout the game and can be given a name of up to 8 characters. The main menu gives you several options and the first gives you the ability to simulate a week of the season. This will show you all of the games for that week and allow you to give a score out of 100 which will bias the chances of the home team. This will default to a value based on the ratings of the teams involved but can be adjusted if required.
It is also possible to select a Match of the Day. This game will be played out with commentary whilst the other games will only show score updates. You can enter player names for the Match of the Day or accept the defaults where each team has A.Bloggs, B.Bloggs etc. If you choose to enter player names, you can also choose their position as well as selecting a penalty taker. Once the game starts, you get a summary screen which shows the number of minutes elapsed. Highlights will be show in text commentary where the team that has the chance is displayed, then the player involved and finally the outcome of the chance. A slight delay between these details builds tension as to the outcome and occasionally a goal is announced but then disallowed after a slight delay. Other outcomes include across goal, hit the post, cleared off the line etc. Other events such as yellow and red cards, injuries and penalties can also occur.
When a goal is scored, the summary screen updates with the number of the scorer and the game continues. If there are other games being played that week, a summary is given at the bottom of the screen and goal updates occur during the match. After the match has finished and all results have been summarised, the game returns to the main menu.
Other options allow the league table to be produced, individual games to be postponed, permanent entry of names of players and team records. It is also possible to conduct a cup draw which will produce a random match up of teams. Cup games and friendlies can be simulated by using the Non League match option which allows you to set up a one off game with team names of your choice.
Results, league tables and bespoke messages can be sent to an attached printer and the season can be saved at any time to allow the game to be continued at a later date. Despite having many options, this game has no real scope for the player to influence games other than biasing the strength of the game and is very much a simulation rather than an interactive game.
Programmer - R.Hill
Price at release - Cassette - £6.99 Disk - £8.99
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This exhibit has a reference ID of CH31192. Please quote this reference ID in any communication with the Centre for Computing History.
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