World Cup USA '94


"Featuring: formation editor; strip editor; team editor; World Cup trivia quiz and free kick! mode.  Customise gameplay to suit your own soccer style using pre-match options: speed; back-pass rule; radar display; match duration; trap; offside rule; weather and dribble control."

Game Information
Developer Tiertex
Publisher U.S. Gold
Copyright Date 1994
Players 1 - 4
Age Rating(s) None given
Save Type RAM
Cart Version Yes

Part Numbers
Game T-79025-50
Front Cover None specific
Back Cover None specific
Manual None specific
Spine Card N/A
CD 1 None specific
Bar Code 5 013442 560006

Things start badly when this game commits the cardinal sin of an unskippable intro sequence, and sadly they don't get any better.  You'll have to crack open the manual to get to grips with the bewildering array of icons that have no tool tips or help text attached in order to set up the simplest friendly match.  The problem is that having watched the stadium fly-by, once you do start a game you'll really wish you hadn't.  Graphically World Cup USA '94 is perhaps nearest to Kick-Off, as it uses reasonably detailed sprites but a top-down view with the ball growing in size to show lift.  The manual only explains controls for when you are in possession of the ball (limited to pass, chip and shoot), and off-the ball options seem limited to scything tackle and total inaction.  Active player selection is entirely at the mercy of the game.  Now this isn't always a bad thing - Sensible Soccer does the same and manages wonderful flowing play, but World Cup USA 94 simply doesn't have a clue, leaving you speechless as your beautifully crafted through ball runs between your statue-like forwards and straight into an opposing defender, because you're still in control of the midfielder who isn't even on the screen anymore.  Result?  Saudi Arabia 6, Brazil 0 and a game that will never be played again...

Whilst the game isn't as customisable as the mighty Sensible Soccer it makes a good attempt at it. Up to 8 of the qualifying nations can be edited and replaced with your choice of name and strip, and a fair number of manager-style options such as editable formations and set pieces allow you to create your dream team.  Gameplay options such as players automatically trapping the ball and how well they control it (i.e. how well the ball "sticks" to the players' feet) can also be adjusted, along with the usual match rules such as offside and real time duration.

On a more personal note, the manual is intensely annoying simply because it insists on calling the game "soccer", and even has a patronising page entitled "What is Soccer?" for those who have been living in a cave.  On Mars.  With their eyes closed.

This game came with an A3 poster featuring the cover artwork on the front and a chart with cut-out flags to track the tournament on the back.  The two CD audio tracks by The Scorpions are found on the game disc after all the other audio and data tracks for the game - there is no second bonus CD.

Many people (myself included) have picked up sealed copies of this game (I wonder why it didn't sell very well).  They come with genuine "envelope edges" on the seal and not one of them has a spine card, meaning I'm almost certain that this game never had one.