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You asked for it, now you got it! Gremlin Interactive are proud to present the third and last(?) Premier Manager game in the series... Jonathan Maddock cheers from the terraces…

It's been mentioned that football is the greatest game ever invented. Judging by the amount of people who go to matches, watch it on TV and actually play the game. I tend to be in agreement with whoever uttered those words.
It's not suprising that the computer football game is far more popular than any other genre. The arcade games sell well, but it is the management simulation that has been top of the league for the last few years.
You can thank Gremlin for this because when it released the original Premier Manager a few years ago it created a game that was as close to football management as you could possibly get.
The Sheffield-based software hose then created a sequel which surpassed the original and now Gremlin Interactive is hoping that the third game in the series will do just as well.
Looking back at Gremlin's track record, I can't see anything but success for the latest Premier Manager offering.
A bit of a bold thing to say in the introduction, but I've already played it you see and it's rather good.

Obviously you only have to look back at the previous Premier Manager games to find a game of the football management simulation variety. Ignoring these though, there are a whole wealth of management games out in the shops and most of them are pretty damn good.
A firm favourite and Premier Manager's closest competitor is Championship Manager which has sold incredibly well over the last couple of years plus it's been faithfully supported by a whole range of data disks.
On the Ball: World Cup and League Editions have been the latest additions to the football management fold and with their fancy TV style graphics they're sure to put up a lot of competition.
Even Sensible World of Soccer has got a new management aspect to it and no doubt this will be a big seller, but in my opinion nothing compares to Gremlin's Premier Manager series.

Premier Manager 3

Although graphics and sound are quite important in a piece of software, I'm sure fans of the game would much rather know about all the new features included.
One of the major new features is the introduction of an Assistant Manager. This person can help with the day-to-day running of the club, leaving you to sort out the running of the team. He/she can do the training schedules, treat injured players, check sponsor boards, hire and fire employees and negotiate player contracts.
All these tedious jobs which were a pain in the previous games are now a thing of the past, although it depends on how good your Assistant is as to how much he/she does.
A new transfer system has been incorporated which lets you see other club's bids, allowing you to raise yours accordingly at the right moment. This time around you haven't got as much money to start with and you must try and get the money off your tight-fisted directors to buy players.
The most interesting feature of all is the new tactics editor. You can now change what each player does and where he plays on the pitch. For example, you can decide how far out from goal each player shoots from or you can tell each of your defenders to clear the ball whenever they receive it, and so it goes on.
What you get is a far more in-depth game and your decisions really do affect how your team performs. A feature which you should be very wary of is the fact that you can now be sacked immediately in mid-season if your management performance isn't up to scratch.

Premier Manager 3

This latest version has been given a good lick of paint in several areas. First is the actual backdrop to the main menu which can now be user-defined. All the colours of the rainbow are in there and it's all down to you how good the game looks.
The ground improvements screen now features a full stadium and although it's a superficial change, it does look rather nice. The biggest change appears when you finally get around to playing a match.
Gremlin Interactive has scrapped the animations of Premier Manager 2 and introduced a full stadium that comes complete with players in correct strips into the management fray.
This means you get to know exactly where the ball is at all times and it's a lot clearer to know exactly where you're going. The players can even be changed into shirt's numbers so that the screen isn't so cluttered, and if you don't fancy any of these new graphics then they can be simply turned off.
The rest of the menus and screens are very similar to the ones found in the first sequel, but on the whole Premier Manager 3 looks a lot more polished and better presented than it's predecessors.

There really isn't a need for superb sound effects and music in a game of this type. That said, Premier Manager 3 does contain a fair smattering of sound.
The match sequence comes complete with crowd effects and you're even treated to a selection of sampled speech when something happens within the game.
The introduction tune is quite good, but I'm sure dedicated gamers will skip past it to simply get to playing the game. However, if it didn't have a piece of introduction music I'm sure you'd get people whinging and complaining.
What sound is in the simulation is good, but you don't really need any sound whatsoever to make this type of game a success.

Amiga Computing Gold Award With the introduction of loads of new and innovative features, there wasn't any question that this third game in the series wouldn't be good. Even though it's about a year since I played around on the last one, I picked up the Premier Manager swing of things almost immediately.
The new graphical inclusions really do set Gremlin Interactive's management simulation apart from the rest. The game is now just about perfect and Realms of Fantasy has included everything that you could possible want in a football management game.
I suppose if you bought the first and second games then you might want to, to financial reasons, steer clear of the product, but then again, by buying both those games you must be a bit of a fan and I expect that this third game is already on your shopping list.
As far as gameplay goes, Premier Manager 3 is in a class of its own, but where it really scores is in the addiction stakes. I raise my hand now and admit that I did play Premier Manager 2 into the early hours when I should have gone out and had a life. I fear that Premier Manager 3 will have the same effect on me, so I'm locking it away, such is its addictive power.
If you loved the previous installments then you'll want Premier Manager 3. For football management beginners there isn't a better game on the planet to get you started. A better layout for this page would have been the headline "Premier manager 3" with the words "buy it" underneath. So what are you waiting for?

Amiga Computing, Issue 81, Christmas 1994, pp.110-111 (System)