Wembley International Soccer logo

Price: £19.99 Publisher: Audiogenic 0181 424 2244

The AGA version of Wembley International Soccer was released nearly two years ago around World Cup time. It featured few innovations but bore up as a solid if uninspiring little football game. Heaven knows how it's taken them this long to cut it down to one disk and 1Mb Amiga compatibility, but it has and my opinion still hasn't changed much.

It's a neat, uncomplicated game. The menu screen is simple to use, though if you're used to other arcade football games like Sensi, FIFA and Total where the joystick reigns supreme, the fact that you have to use a mouse to access menus and then switch to a joystick seems a bit bothersome.

However it's a game that's easy to get into without ever reading the (small) manual and considering the fact that you can switch between six referees, adjust the wind between none, light, medium and strong and play on five surfaces, from astroturf to muddy, skimming through the options takes no time at all.

There are 24 teams including USA, Bulgaria, Saudi Arabia and Russia, but, unlike the old AGA version (where 48 international teams were available) England, Scotland or Wales are not included. Bizarre!
You can elect to play in a friendly game or the World Cup and there are practice options, the options to equalise skills between players and 10 skill (or frustration depending how you look at it) levels to help you play the game.

Once you start the player animations are actually really cool, if a little jerky. Also, the control method is straightforward and you don't need a degree in finger dexterity to complete any of the plays. An arrow points in the direction you will shoot should you press the fire button and when not in control of the ball clicking on the fire button quickly puts you in charge of the nearest player.

Passing is not difficult, but it's punctuated by little bleeps which signify that you can pass to a player - these are an odd addition.

Overall Wembley Soccer has gone down a grade since I last saw it. This has very little to do with the game itself, after all it hasn't changed much. It's more to do with the level of competition. The aforementioned Total Football, FIFA and Sensible World of Soccer 95/96 have all been released since and poor Wembley just can't compete at all.

Wembley International Soccer CD32 logo AGA

Audiogenic 081-424 2244 * A1200 £25.99 * CD32 £29.99 * Out now

If at first it flops, get yourself an endorsement and tweak accordingly before re-releasing. Wembley International Soccer appeared in a different guise some eight months ago and was known as European Champions (AF52 73%).

This time around, the club sides have been replaced by national teams, but other than that the differences are purely cosmetic. It's very distinctive in that the sprites are huge and the kit detail superb, and WIS (As we shall call it evermore) offers two pitch views - top-down and side view. The latter is the better option, extending more opportunity to plan and execute passing moves.

Unusually, there is an option for one player to use the CD32 controller (on both A1200 and CD32 versions) bringing into play all the buttons. Unfortunately, even with two CD controllers on the CD32 version, only one can make use of this option - a definite minus point. Plus points, though, are a one-touch passing option and an excellent tactics system which enables fine team tuning.

WIS is certainly different from most Amiga footie games and people looking for a change should enjoy it, but it is a tad slow. If you bought European Champions then don't bother; otherwise, WIS is a good addition to your collection, but unlikely to have the longevity of Sensible Soccer.

Wembley International Soccer AGA logo AGA A1200 Speziell

Fragt uns bitte nicht, welche Lizenz-Rangeleien da zwischen Ocean und Audiogenic aufgelaufen sind - fest steht nur, daß wir es hier mit der überarbeiteten 1200-er Version von "Lothar Matthäus" zu tun haben!

Also Fußballveteran kommt man bei dem Titel schon ins Grübeln, schließlich fiel in Wembley anno 1966 im WM-Finale zwischen England und Deutschland jenes umstrittene Tor, über das sich engagierte Passivsportler bis heute erregen. Soll der Name der Chose also die britische Rache für das Scheitern der 11 Inselbewohner bei der diesjährigen WM-Qualifikation sein?

Wir wissen es nicht, aber dafür wissen wir ein paar Dinge über dieses Spiel, die letztlich eh viel interessanter sind.

So zum Beispiel, daß der Aufbau exakt dem von "Lothar" entspricht. Es ist also jederzeit ein Wechsel von der Vogelperspektive mit vertikalem Scrolling zur Seitenansicht möglich, 64 Teams aus aller Welt nehmen teil, Liga- und diverse Pokalmodi sind vorhanden.

Neu hinzugekommen sind in erster Linie der WM-Modus und die Option, auch ein CD32-Joypad am A1200er zu benutzen, was gerade bei der beispielhaft gelösten Replayfunktion ein deutliches Plus an Bedienungskomfort bedeutet.

Die dezent aufgemöbelte Steuerung zählt überhaupt zu den Stärken des Games, während man im übrigen schon genau hinschauen bzw. -hören muß, um irgendwelche Unterschiede zum Pendant festzustellen.

Unübersehbar sind bloß die Einblendungen des Schiedsrichters und des aktiven Spielers, andererseits wirkt die Grafik nun ein bißchen langsamer. Außerdem ist dieses Progi komplett englisch, was sich unser "Loddar" schon im eigenen Interesse verbeten hätte.

Noch Fragen? Nur eine: Warum ist kein Warnhinweis für "Lothar"-Besitzer auf der Packung? (mm)

Wembley International Soccer AGA logo AGA

As World Cup fever comes to a close, Tony Dillon relives those memories with the latest soccer game from Audiogenic.

"Onion bag". "A game of two halves". "I'm over the moon, Brian". These are just some of the cliches and rehashed lines that you must be absolutely sick of reading in your favourite computer magazines. Never before has a single sporting event sparked such a reaction in the software industry.

Previous World Cups are incredibly tame by comparison to the flood of soccer games crawling out of the woodwork at the moment, and as a reviewer it is getting very hard to write about them without feeling like you're repeating yourself.

Essentially, even though there are so many soccer games coming out, most of them are based on almost identical game formats, with only the graphics and animation setting many of them apart. Like the others, this one has 64 international teams who play like their real life counterparts. This game also lets you select your squad and tactics and you can choose to play in a league or cup competition.

In essence, there are only three types of arcade soccer game - your Sensible Soccer top view, your Striker forced perspective and the Kick Off 3 Emlyn Hughes classic side-on view.

Wembley International Soccer takes a leaf out of all three, allowing you to switch between the side-on view of Kick Off 3 and the top down view of Sensible Soccer. Oddly enough, it's the side on view that actually seems to work best.

The players look good, and you are given a good feeling of distance and perspective. When viewed from above, the game runs very slowly, and the size of the players means that you don't get to see anywhere near as much of the pitch as you do in the default view. Still, people have different opinions, and it's nice to see a game that caters for all tastes.

If you aren't familiar with Audiogenic's soccer games, then you won't know that over the last ten years, Peter Calver and his team have tried to find the perfect control method - one that allows you all the freedom you need to get some real team action into the game yet is simply enough to make the game playable.

Through the Emlyn hughes series they got closer and closer, although some felt that the games were a little too sluggish in places to actually stand up against panic starters like Sensible Soccer and Kick Off.

The method that Audiogenic have finally settles on is both simple and effective. There are essentially two different ways to kick the ball. The first is fairly standard, and simply makes the player kick the ball in a straight line in the direction they are running.

The other method is a little more unusual. When a player has the ball, an arrow will appear above their head. This is the passing indicator, and tells you which direction the ball will be passed to if you hit the fire button. The player the pass is aimed at is identified by a large hoop above their head, a la The Saint, and this makes it quite easy to set up a fast passing game with a minimum of practice.

The game looks good enough, with more frames of animation than most games and a very realistic ball, but it does seem a little slow when compared to something like Sensible Soccer or Kick Off. In fact, if there is anything that does let the game slow down, it's that the controls feel a little sluggish and slow to respond a lot of the time. Although the design of the game means you don't have to be QuickDraw McGraw on the fire button, having to slow down with the controls makes the game a little frustrating at times.

Wembley international Soccer is by no means a bad game. Indeed, there are enough original features and factors in there to make it worth checking out, but the slow control method means that Sensible Soccer fans will probably hate it. Fun to play, but there are a lot better football games on the market.

Wembley International Soccer CD32 logo CD32 Amiga Computing Bronze Award

Tina Hackett tackles Audiogenic's latest, Wembley International Soccer, and referees who will really win the World Cup of footy games this summer.


Football fever really has swept the nation and the vast array of souvenirs from footballs to cutesy teddy bears shows that it's a profitable venture to cash in on the World Cup.
Even software houses have realised the financial possibilities of all the football goings-on and that bringing out a multitude of soccer-based titles now will be a real money spinner.

But there is the temptation to sacrifice quality at the expense of trying to rush a game out in time to benefit from all the hype. It's important to keep a check on the many releases and to see which really are spot on goal and which miss by a mile.
Audiogenic, not ones to let an opportunity pass by, have produced this effort under the official Wembley moniker. So England need not feel left out of the World Cup after all.


Although many of the moves take a fair bit of practice tow work, once mastered they are very effective and provide a high degree of realism. The elements of the real game are well simulated and the overall title is complemented by a good tactical element

The way 'set pieces' are taken is unusual and takes some getting used to, but enables you to produce accurate moves. For corners and throw-ins, for example, you control the player receiving the ball - take too long though and it'll be taken automatically.

The free-kick system is also a little confusing at first but does work well. You can control either the player taking the shot or receiving it.
The same applies to other moves such as barging and dribbling. Although they are pretty spectacular when they do work, they need practice unlike the more instinctive controls found in Goal and Sensible Soccer.

Wembley Soccer also employs a 'one-touch' football system, allowing you to pass to another player who will head or volley the ball rather than bringing it under control. This makes for a faster game and will help you set up spectacular goals.



There are so may football games on the market now to compare this game to. The all-time classics in most people's books are Sensible Soccer and Goal and it is hard not to compare any new releases to these greats.

Both Sensible Soccer and Goal held such great appeal because of their instant playability and personally, being a bit of a Goal fanatic, I found it hard at first to really get into Wembley Soccer and become used to the slower gameplay.

Wembley Soccer is an excellent game in its own right but it's unlikely to become a classic to really rival Sensible Soccer or Goal.
Although Wembley Soccer does have plenty going for it, it doesn't seem to have anything significant or outstanding to really make the game shine and push it to the forefront of the competition this summer.



Match atmosphere is an important quality in the football game and unfortunately Wembley Soccer is sadly lacking here. The usual crowd chants, reactions and cheers have been included but they are not of a particularly high quality, nor for that matter, even vaguely realistic.

Given that this title bears the Wembley name, you are led to expect something special in this aspect. Being host to the many important Cup Finals and play-offs, Wembley has earned a reputation for its frenetic match atmosphere.
It comes as a great let-down to see that the game doesn't even try to convey this, and the sound is more reminiscent of the noise heard in a public swimming bath rather a manic football crowd.

Taking into account that this is a CD game, it really is appalling to use sound of such poor quality.




Graphically the game really does look the business. Views can be switched between the overhead and side-on. This works exceptionally well, allowing you to change the angle according to the action and the scanner feature enables you to keep track of the whole area. Animated sequences of the referee booking players and the like adds a nice tough.

Attention to detail has been paid to create a realistic stadium, even down to the line markings on the pitch looking worn away. The crowd details are adequate enough to create the impression of the spectators and the usual advertising hoardings are included to make the stadium look fairly authentic.




On first playing Wembley Soccer it didn't impress me one bit. However, being one of those games where perseverance (and a closer study of the manual!) pays dividends, I soon found there was more to it than meets the eye.
After playing for a while I began to see the merits of the unusual control system and found that once the controls have been mastered the game is very playable and the moves most rewarding.
Two-player mode works like a dream and with the 'one-touch football' system the gameplay can be fast and frantic.

The graphics are detailed and the two pitch views works well, almost providing two games for the price of one! But despite growing to like this game I still have a few niggling doubts. For instance, the players pass to each other by showing a possible receiver in an on-screen box and although this is an original approach, it sometimes obscures some of the vital action.

The replay option also needs to be vastly improved and it is fiddly to operate, especially with the joystick. Incidentally the game can be controlled by both the joystick and control pad and is cleverly designed so that both methods work equally well.

An A1200 version of this title is also available and looks and plays exactly the same. Although the loading time is obviously a little longer, this seems to be the only difference.

The additional keyboard controls makes the replay mode easier to use and you don't end up accidentally pressing the different buttons, which sometimes happens with the CD controller. For example, it was too easy to accidentally press the 'pitch view' button meaning briefly disrupting the flow of the game.

All in all though, this is a good football simulation for those who prefer an in-depth, accurate game rather than a quick kick about. Containing a nice range of options and a good tactical element this is a great title. However, without having a crystal ball it's hard to predict whether it really is going to be strong enough to see off soccer giants like Kick Off 3 of the Sensible World Of Soccer which promise to be tough competition.

Wembley International Soccer CD32 logo CD32

What's this? A sideways-viewed soccer game that's actually playable? Yes, Wembley International Soccer (Audiogenic, 081-424 2244, £29.99) is a highly enjoyable romp through fields populated by big sprites, smooth scrolling and fun (if not particularly fast) gameplay.

The pluses include such features as a marvelous tactics-tweaking option which really works and the use of all the buttons on the CD32's controller. The minuses are that this all-button option only works for one of the controllers, for some inexplicable reason, and the game itself is a little too slow.

The dynamics of the ball are fine, and the players do everything they should. And because it's international soccer, you get to choose countries instead of club teams, which always lends a slightly grander atmosphere to any game.
Wembley International Soccer is good, but can't tackle the likes of Sensible Soccer.

Wembley International Soccer CD32 logo CD32

Audiogenic hat die (im Soccer-Special ausführlich vorgestellte) 1200er-Neuauflage von "Lothar Matthäus" gleich auch auf CD gepackt. Per Pad geht das Kicken sogar einen Tick besser von der Hand, dafür findet nur ein Spielstand im Backup-Speicher des CD32 Platz - bei der Präsentation hat sich so gut wie nix getan.

Optionen und Spielbarkeit überzeugen aber auch hier, weshalb die Fußball-Action erneut mit 81 Prozent. (rl)

Wembley International Soccer CD32 logo CD32

Have you noticed how England never lose at Wembley?

It is not until you have been a follower of football and computer football games for a while that you realise their historical importance. Take my home team Kilmarnock (Gngh. - Ed). This year they reached the semi-final of the Scottish Cup for the first time in twenty years - a landmark in the club's history.

If you read last month's AP, you will already know that we were up against Scottish Champions and European Challengers, Glasgow 'dirty stinking hun' Rangers. On the fateful day of the semi-final, we forced a replay. I felt so proud of Kilmarnock that I stayed over in Scotland to catch the next match.

Now, I do not mind if we get beaten fairly and squarely in any game. Sickeningly though, in the replay, Rangers were awarded a non-goal as a goal - the equaliser. Consequently, our game fell apart for the next ten minutes. Rangers took full advantage of the demoralising situation and scored the winning goal of the game. Hearteningly, Kilmarnock's play picked up from that major setback. They pressured and harried the huns for the duration of the match. In the end, it was to no avail, but at least they tried. They played with one hundred percent conviction and even more heart; it very nearly paid off, too. Despite the extreme disappointment at the result, all of the Killie supporters who went home that night felt proud of the team for their effort and commitment.

Killie's manager, Tommy Burns, is the first to admit that our players are not as good as Rangers' players. Just like Tommy Burns, Jeremy Wellard, the Project Manager of Audiogenic, admitted that Wembley International Soccer is not as good as Sensible Soccer - the game with which every other soccer game on the Amiga and indeed, any system is inevitably compared. But, just as with the Kilmarnock/Rangers situation, that does not stop WIS having some star features which make it more than capable of challenging and beating Sensi.

The first of these features, and the one that made me literally just about almost beg Jonathan to give the review two pages on the flat plan, rather than the allotted one page, is the inclusion of some code that lets the A1200 make full use of the CD32 controller. Yes, that is right, I can hardly believe it myself. Even the game's chief programmer told them it could not be done. Every single button on the CD32 pad is made use of by this game. It is quite literally more astounding than something that is astonishing: the extra button availability opens up a world of fantastic potential. (Steve, calm down - Ed).

Let us deal with each button in turn. The cursor pad fulfils its statutory obligations, i.e. it controls the direction you send your players in. The big red button is your shooting-, tackling- and heading-control. Shooting is similar in style to Kick Off, so the longer you hold the button down, the greater the strength of the shot on release. Slide tackling takes place if you are not in possession of the ball and you use the button while moving. The last function of the red button, heading and volleying, is achieved through some dextrous, well-timed, nimble-fingeredness, and can result in some particularly fine goals if it is executed properly.

The blue button implements a function somewhat ridiculously known as 'ping' passing. Now, the thing with ping passing is that it allows you to play a very accurate, flowing passing game. The man you are going to pass to appears in a little window, affording you extra visibility to gauge where he is on the pitch and whether or not he is in a good position to pick up the pass. Provided you are pleased with his present position, a quick tap on the blue button will send the ball hurtling in his direction.

The yellow button changes the view from a top-down plan view à la Sensi and Kick Off to a side view much like John Barnes Football. Whichever view you opt to use (the top-down view, admittedly, does not work too well), there is also the obligatory transparent map like the one from Kick Off to let you gauge the positions of players on the field.

And the effort has really paid off

The green button is similar to 'ping' passing except that you can choose just about any player on the field to pass to. This is achieved by moving a little direction arrow which appears above the player in possession's head. Intelligent use of this button will allow you to catch the opposition on the hop.

Those are the main control buttons. The shoulder buttons and the pause button are also used in a peripheral fashion: for replays, pause (surprisingly enough) and for speeding up those deadball situations.

Do not think from all this cock-a-hooping that the game is not any good using a normal joystick. It is. It is just that the mechanics are a little trickier to get to grips with - at the time of writing, I am still trying very hard to get the hang of one-touch passing.

There are plenty of game options too. Varying from bog standard choices such as referees, type of pitch surface and wind strength, to the incredibly helpful style-of-play tactic choice. You can opt for a British style, i.e. hoof the ball and chase after it, or a continental passing game, or any one of the three other styles on offer. You can even customise your own set of tactics so that, as soon as you have familiarised yourself with the passing routine, you can fine-tune your footballing skills.

The biggest criticism that WIS leaves itself open to is that of speed. If the pitch was larger and the players moved faster, this game would be nigh-on perfect. As it stands, it looks and feels as if the players are being held back by an invisible magnet, giving the impression that the footballers are running on the spot while moving (if that makes any sort of sense to you). That obstacle is something, I am sure, Audiogenic can and will improve on with future footy game releases. I certainly hope they do. They are onto a real winner if they manage it.

It is obvious from playing WIS that an incredible amount of though has gone into the playability and entertainment stakes. Both Jeremy Wellard and Neall Campbell (Audiogenic's playtester) are true enthusiasts who really believe in the games they are helping to create. And the effort has really paid off. Just like Kilmarnock FC, Wembley International Soccer has a lot of heart and commitment behind it. The use of all the buttons on the CD32 controller is nothing short of a historical landmark, and one that we hope to see other lots of other software houses pick up in the near future. What is more, WIS is capable of some upbeat play, and that has got to be better than a good thing.