Unknown to many people apart from those at Ocean Software, Liverpool FC was to be also developed by Ocean Software in the early 90’s, and the team were hard at work on the title.
It seems Grandslam must have kicked up a bit of stink considering they had the licence, and Ocean were trying to cash in on it, so the title was axed… but not completely it seems.
Liverpool FC eventually turned into what is now Adidas Championship Football… well, at least part of it. Liverpool FC was to be a management/action game which featured a lot more arcade feel to it than most football/management games at that time. Kind of like a Sensible World of Soccer if you like.
Ocean decided after the mess of Liverpool FC and its licence being held at Grandslam, they quickly wanted to cash in on the up and coming World cup 90, and so got Nick Taylor and his team to turn the action part of the game into what is now known as the Adidas game, minus the management section.
However, Nick had been working on the Management section, and had not done much to the action side, so basically in the 6 week period they were given to finish the game, Nick had to write most of the game from scratch.
But to this day, there is a rather large chunk of the game that remained to be unseen, which was the management section. It now has been uncovered for GTW for the very first time… A very big glimpse of Ocean’s unknown Liverpool licence…
All the management features, almost complete, are in place in bits and pieces. We offer all the remains for you to download, including many executable bits and pieces from the management section, early parts of the action sections which turned into Adidas Soccer, and a load of graphics… possibly some unused.
Another BIG finding was the selection of Matt Cannon tunes for the game which were unused. Some of them were actually used in Adidas Soccer, but a fair few sub tunes were not. These have been uncovered here, along with a load of management SFX. HVSC were quite happy :-)
Regarding this rather shocking conversion… Nick said this about the game…
“With regards to the Liverpool license there was one – I think there was some confusion as Granstand (?) also had a Liverpool license and it turned out that one company could use the name of the club and the other one could use the badge or something like that.
The Adidas switch was due to the need to get a game out for the C64 pack for World Cup 1990, and we were to push on with Liverpool once that was out the way. Thing is, the Amiga/ST version took an eternity to finish and so Ocean lost interest which was fair enough.”
Nick went on to produce other games for Hi-Tec and Codemasters, most famously Bee 52 and Bugs Bunny (Which sadly didn’t get released either).
When originally quizzed about the game, Gary Bracey couldn’t recall any conversion… especially because the head of Ocean was an Eveton fan. We hope that Gary will shed some light if he recalls any of the game from the screenshots.
Found… a piece of Ocean history we were not mean’t to see…
Contributions: Nick Taylor, David Spicer, Skeletor
Nick Taylor speaks to GTW about ‘Liverpool FC’…
“Liverpool FC – We started writing this for Ocean (I did C64 and Dave Spicer did Spectrum/Amstrad), but a few months from completion we were asked to write Adidas Championship Soccer in just 7 weeks (Boy did it show!) to get Ocean out of a hole with Commodore.
It was that instance that completely smashed my naive illusions about the whole game writing scene.”
David Spicer speaks to GTW about ‘Liverpool FC’…
“An official “Liverpool Football Club” game, by Ocean. I worked on the Speccy version, whilst the C64 code was handled by Nick Taylor.
Nick later went on to do a lot of work for Hi-Tec and Codemasters (Black Hornet, Steg, etc). LFC was to be a player/manager type game, with a more ‘arcadey’ player part than past attempts at doing the same thing.
Come World Cup time, Ocean decided they wanted a footy game pronto and instructed us to turn the unfinished player part of LFC into “Adidas Championship Football” (which did get published). Time was pressing and Adidas turned into a bit of a mess – Nick had only worked on the management part and we basically had to throw together the complete C64 game in about 6 weeks.
From this point on the writing was on the wall for LFC. Some dumb decisions on our part gave Ocean plenty of rope to hang us and the whole thing just fizzled out, with the whole team ending up seriously out of pocket. If it wasn’t for that bloody game, I’d probably have had a very nice career in the games industry, rather than dredging the bottom of the budget barrel over the following years!”