Well, as correctly noted to me recently by a GTW reader, why the hell haven’t we covered World Cup Carnival V1??
And why not indeed – with the original game mess of World Cup Carnival apparently half complete before the internal problems and decision to refit Artic’s game instead we should really try and find out about this half complete version.
What really happened?… Was there more to it than US Gold were letting on? It’s now time to find out!
Well, thanks to the excellent The History of US Gold book by Chris Wilkins and Roger Kean, we learn that there was no first version of the game in production. Basically the licence was picked up, but there was confusion between Geoff Brown and Tim Chaney about who was organizing the production of the game. Once they realized that neither had sorted anything, they got Ocean on board to produce the game – or so they thought!
They were hoping that Ocean were to produce a title for them, building on Match Day – but it was kinda left without properly checking how things were progressing. When they found that Ocean hadn’t started any game and wires were crossed again – they frantically paid Artic a load of money to tidy up their old World Cup game and put that in the box they were about to sell. With the idea that the game was a bonus along with all the other goodies they had in the box. Nothing was given away about the game until it was actually released – and cue a lot of pissed off customers. It did some damage, but not enough to hurt US Gold too badly.
As a result, there was no earlier edition of the game that was too bad that it had to be replaced by a slightly tweaked Artic game. So there is nothing to find!
Therefore … its a case closed!
Contributions: Hank, The History of US Gold, Chris Wilkins, Roger Kean
Covered TWICE in Edge it seems, as it also crops up in May 1998’s Digital Disasters.
Eyewitness testimony from:
Graham Taylor, then editor of Your Sinclair, detailing how front cover and a lot of mag space were planned aroundd the game and how it arrived on deadline day after US Gold had gone strangely quiet in weeks leading upto it’s arrival….
Charles Cecil on how Tim Chaney had asked Artic Computing to add a section that allowed players to practice penalites and ball skills and he too points out in days leading upto games release, US Gold won’t answer the phone.
And Adam Waring, who added the ‘enhancements’ whilst at Artic and he relates how Amstrad Action scored the game at 0% and also how after Artic had lost everything,after Aric sold rights to original game to a distributor, Geoff’s Records, who sued US Gold/Artic, the programmers were only paid half of what they were promised.
Aric were only given 6 weeks to make the changes to Artic World Cup, to turn it into World Cup Carnival.
The whole incident/game fiasco, was covered in Edge, issue 120 a good few years back (Unity on GameCube was the cover feature), as part of it’s Development Hell Part 3 feature.
Disclaimer:I’m far from knocking ‘The History Of US Gold’ book, i’ve just bought a copy :-)
Geoff Brown is quoted, admits game was diabolical, but says he did’nt get to see it until it was in the shops.
He talks of enormus pre-orders for it from disributors for it, as it was the official game of the world cup, Tim Chaney hiding under a desk after US Gold were flooded by (angry) calls once said distributors found what they had on their hands.
The piece also points out that the biggest irony of this being a tarted up version of Artic’s World Cup Football was that the original version was on sale at same time as World Cup Carnival, by Paxman Productions for £1.99.
US Gold it seems ended up paying them £20,000 in a settlement over a dispute over rights to the game.
Geoff blames fact US Gold were handling so many games at the time, that lead to the confusion between him/Tim over who was dealing with the game and when it dawned on the pair there was no game being worked on, period, ot became apparent no-one would be able to produce a game from scratch and get it finished in time,, cue contacting Artic…
Ironic that the truth about a series of miscommunications was never communicated to the public. Disappointing news anyway, I loved the idea of something WORSE than World Cup Carnival existing somewhere….
Amazing, if a bit disappointing! Still, good to know. Thanks for your great work as always Frank!
Mildly curious Frank (and I’m making an assumption that you got a copy), but was anything about this mentioned in the recent US Gold history book release?
Still bugs me!
Ah, yes! It was, and I haven’t yet done an update! Will do so now :) Cheers Hank!