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Balance of Power (Atari ST)

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MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.4
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
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Description

The year is 1986. You take on the role of the US President or the Russian General Secretary. You have the full industrial capacity, covert forces, and military might of your country at your command. Your job? To make your country the world's most powerful and prestigious over the course of your eight years in office. Sounds easy, doesn't it? It would be if the other guy didn't have his finger poised over a red button that could wipe out the world!

You must use diplomacy, make treaties, issue risky, covert CIA or KGB actions, or riskier, direct military intervention to prop up third world countries or help their insurgents and win them to your governmental philosophy: Capitalism or Communism. The world is a big place... and the other guy could start a nuclear war over a country as tiny as Tunisia. This game is the ultimate Cold War simulation. Every action requires careful analysis and the ability to judge your opponent (computer or human) and his reaction. The game features 62 countries, each carefully researched with up to date (as of 1985) information regarding their government, demographics, resources, etc.

Screenshots

Balance of Power Atari ST A diplomatic crisis is on the rise
Balance of Power Atari ST Let's see who's on my side...
Balance of Power Atari ST Today in the news
Balance of Power Atari ST Options

Alternate Titles

  • "Geopolitics in the nuclear age." -- Subtitle

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

There are no reviews for the Atari ST release of this game. You can use the links below to write your own review or read reviews for the other platforms of this game.


The Press Says

ACE (Advanced Computer Entertainment) Dec, 1987 950 out of 1000 95
Tilt Jun, 1987 18 out of 20 90
Happy Computer 1986 82 out of 100 82

Forums

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Trivia

Credits

Chris Crawford in the Acknowledgements section:
I conceived, designed, programmed, developed, and tested this game. Yet, no such project is truly single-handed; every designer owes a debt of gratitude to a large number of people who lent him their advice, their assistance, and their sympathy.
He credits his wife, Kathy, for consulting him about all "big decisions" (he mentions helping with the images and posing for the pic of an anti-nuke protester).

Difficulty

This game was probably one of the first to include a "Nightmare" level.

Manual

The manual actually contained a bibliography... how many games today can claim that?

Subversive party

For each country in the game, there's a "subversive" party/organization listed for it. For the United States, it was "Democrats".

Windows

This was one of the earliest Windows-only games. You'll notice how similar the game is to the Mac interface (and you'll know why Apple sued Microsoft over the similarity!). It came with a Windows "Run Time" version for users without Windows/286 so they could just play the game.

Awards

  • ACE
    • October 1988 (issue #13) - Included in the Top-100 list of 1987/1988 (editorial staff selection)
  • Computer Gaming World
    • November 1996 (15th anniversary issue) - #78 in the "150 Best Games of All Time" list
    • November 1996 (15th anniversary issue) – #11 Best Way To Die In Computer Gaming (blowing up Earth)
Information also contributed by Kasey Chang and PCGamer77

Related Web Sites

  • Chris Crawford (biography of Chris Crawford, creator of Balance of Power, its sequel, and many other games. Written by Chris himself!)
Belboz (6553) added Balance of Power (Atari ST) on Jan 28, 2003
Other platforms contributed by PCGamer77 (3028), Raphael (1160), Kabushi (121106), Terok Nor (18323) and Игги Друге (40145)