We are once again all together to talk about the further fair game for the Amiga. This time we talk of Sea Side, by the APC&TCP software house. I have to state you that the game we are reviewing was already published several time ago only in German, but now APC&TCP reproposes it in English. Anyway this title, even if it's a bit old, shows up itself quite well, not because it is made excellently, instead because it's a title that brings, in some manners, a kind of originality in the world of Amiga videogames.
The game comes on a CD-ROM, even if the space really occupied on the CD is
very little, less than 25 Mbytes. Of these, 12 MBytes contain the English
version while the other 12 MBytes the German one. But, as is said, the cowl
doesn't make the monk, so cut the vain words and let's begin with the description
of this game.
For those of you that know english language, it will be quite easy to guess what type of game we are reviewing this time. It's a beach simulator. Yeah, you've understood. You will be the manager of a whole bathing establishment. All things will be under your control. It's useless to tell you that the main aim is to make money, more than you can.
Once you have inserted the CD, an icon will appear on your Workbench announcing you the game. After you've opened it you'll find two drawers: one is for the English version of the game,and the other one is for the German version (this demonstrates that the game is not localized). Opening one of the two drawers (we have opened the drawer of the english version), you will find other three icons. The first one is a text file with various informations regarding the software house and its copyright, the second one is the icon of the game itself and the third lets you install the CD-ROM on an Hard Disk (This option is always recommended! ndSpawnPPC). Once you have launched the icon of the game some screens will appear in front of your eyes. I have to start by saying that the whole game makes use of the AGA chipset in the graphic resolution of 640*512 pixels. These, like all the other games, show you the title of the game, the name of the software house and other informations. After you have reached the main menu, you can choose between several options, like playing a new game, setting the parameters (they are just two! ndSpawnPPC), load a saved game (you can save only three different games) and quit to the Workbench. The available options are the choice of the difficulty level and the name of the manager.
Once you start a new game you will find yourself in an office, your office,
sitting on a chair at your desk. All your work will be done on this screen.
You can buy lands, beaches, houses, lakes, consumer goods as ice-creams,
biscuits, drinks, sausages, chips, postcards, etc. There's nothing you can't
do. In the buying stage you will have under control all your money, the cost
of any product and the total quantity requested by you. You'll have dossiers
to keep all your properties, the purchase contracts, your buildings, etc.
You can build houses of different sizes, up to real hotels. You have to notice
that every structure is represented, during the buying stage, by a 3D rendered
structure, just to make you understand what you're buying. You can choose the
price that people have to pay, to buy your products, or to lodge
in your houses paying you the rent every week. You'll have at your disposal
also the subscriptions, with the price choosen by you, to give to the various
fisherman that come to your lakes. You'll have the possibility to sell your
structures, in the case you want to build bigger ones or just to remove them.
You will administrate also the insurance of the buildings, your advertising
to attracts the clients for the holidays, and much more things.
But, all things have a cost. Your buildings have a maintenance cost, and even the restructuration. All this money is subtracted from your account. Anyway, all this datas are always under your control. You will have a summary of your incomings and expenditures of your account on a little weekly notebook [journal]. This will help you a lot.
The game is made very well from the point of view of a simulation. There are many other things that I need to say, but unfortunately, as usual, I have to consign the review in a short time, therefore I let you explore the vastness of the game and tell you in few words about the technical aspect. The whole game is made using static 3D graphic, so there is no animation at all, with a resolution of 640*512. The number of colors is the canonical 256 of the AGA. All the numerous screens are well made, even if they are not all excellent. The sound is managed in a way that you will believe to be listening to the radio. You will find three different musics, and you will choose between them. You can do it using the very little icon, in the left-low corner, representing a musical note. The other icon is just an on-line help. It will tell you the name of the various game sections, when you pass on with the mouse.
All the game seems to be OK, but there are some little nuances that bother much.
The painful mark is coming right now. Meanwhile the whole game lacks of an
Italian translation, also because it's not localized, and it would take too much
time to program again the game in our language. Second bad thing, all the money
amounts are expressed in DM, that are german marks. What a pity. It would was
better if they were american dollars. Anyway it's a very little change for us,
because the game is always the same. The number of game saves is too small,
expecially because this kind of games need several hours of playing, and the
fact that every savegame can be overwritten doesn't change my criticism. In my
opinion, simulations should have at least 10 saves. Another bad thing is that
the game need the AGA chipset anyway, either to play, or just to install the game
on the Hard Disk. APC&TCP suggests me to use the very powerful PD utility
NewMode, by now we are at v. 3.9. I try it and I was able to make the game work
on a PicassoIV (please note that without that little utility I have just said
you, the game refused to start because it works only on AGA! ndSpawnPPC). Even
though, sometimes the game quits and returns to the Workbench, without I know
the reason, and gives strange output errors. I don't know if the utility NewMode
is the cause of these (it does nothing different than promoting the AGA screens
on a graphic board), or if they are due to programming errors. One thing is
certain, limiting the game from working on anything that is not the AGA chipset
is not a pleasure for Amigans.
Anyway the game is cool, and at least I liked it enough. I close saying that I advise it to the Amigans that like simulations like Theme Park or Sim City.
Goodbye and see you next time.
We thank APC&TCP for giving us an ORIGINAL copy of the product
For this aricle: firstname.lastname@example.org
General info: email@example.com