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International Cricket Captain III (PC)

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6 Reviews

Developer: Empire / Genre: Sports

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    6 Reviews
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      12.06.2011 19:14
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      One of the better cricket games despite it's limitations.

      International Cricket Captain III is cricket's equivalent of the Football Manager series. In the game you take control of one of the first class counties with the aim to be successful enough to land the England job. The game concentrates purely on the playing aspects of the game with very little focus on finances and training.

      The menus and navigation system in International Cricket Captain III are identical to previous versions, meaning that anyone who has played before will be able to pick the game up and get into it straight away. For newer players, the system is very intuitive and will only take a few moments to get up to speed.

      All player stats in the game reflect actual performances and these are added to by your own in game experiences and abilities so you can either ensure a top international player continues with their glowing career or you could be responsible for their drastic loss of form which eventually costs them their place in the team.

      International Cricket Captain III has had a major overhaul in terms of its graphics. Gone are the outdated 2D graphics, replaced by supposedly slicker 3D player animations. This should be the games major selling point but in my opinion, the game is let down badly here. The graphics are a bit jerky and it is hard to follow the ball movement as it all happens so quick, the game struggles to keep up. Camera angles do not help in this respect, making the graphical representation of the game a massive letdown.

      Graphics aside, the game plays very well and is a very close respresentation of the real game. All tournaments played in England are included as part of an annual calendar, plus all major international events such as test matches, one day internationals and world cups. Although the game is a simulation rather than an arcade game, you only get minimal input into the actual game, making decisions as to who bowls and setting the field or how aggressive each player is when batting. For this reason alone, I wouldn't recommend the game to anyone who isn't passionate about cricket as they just wouldn't get it and would be bored within a few minutes of playing.

      International Cricket Captain III also contains online play which allows you to play a one-off match with another player. This functionality is OK although it doesn't really add anything to the game and will only be used on limited occasions.

      International Cricket Captain III can get quite repetitive at times and is best played without the commentary as this is extremely poor. Although the game has many negative points, it is still one of the best cricket games on the market. My advice would be to try and pick up an earlier version of the game as although the graphics look a bit longer in the tooth, they are easier to follow and the gameplay is almost identical from version to version.

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        28.08.2008 21:15
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        A great managing game

        International Cricket Game is a fantastic game for those who really are devoted and interested in cricket. The cricketing version of football's championship manager and despite the fact that the game doesn't have anything like as many features as it's football equivelant, this game can be enjoyed by all captivated by the sheer magnificence of the sport cricket.

        I really like the way you can control the batsman and bowlers mentality and set precise fields. I love the fact that you can participate in all competitions and try to build a team to win competitions.

        I like it at the end of the season when you can be offered the chance to manage your own country, dpending on how successful you have been for your county team. I also love trying to build a small team and at the end of the season, buy some new, quality players to help try and build a great team!

        Things still need to be done to improve the game, but that will come eventually! I think it is brillinat!

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          27.08.2008 21:26
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          A good game but a little repetitive

          The ICC series seems to have been going forever!
          In this 3rd installment we finally see the introduction of 3d graphics, they may not be the best...but they are 3d!
          In the game you can 'captain' your county team/international although its more manager than captain ha ha!
          You choose the team then watch the highlights of the match (Which to be honest is rather boring!) then you tinker with the team sign players and also train players.
          The game is fun for the first few games but after a while the game just seems to get repetitive and you think...havnt i been here before!?
          The game has a comprehensive list of first class and international players each with their own 'stats' and ratings which affect gameplay.
          Overall the game is entertaining for a while but it gets boring too fast so im going to award this game 4 stars, a good improvement from the last game but little in the way of innovation!

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          14.07.2008 17:21
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          Decent attempt, but needs to work harder on its game engine.

          The summer is here, its time to put down the Football management game for a while, crossover to cricket and concentrate on getting bat on ball, or ball on stumps for a game of International Cricket Captain III....

          Having owned only one other previous version of this game (ICC 2005), i was wondering just how far this game had progressed and if indeed it would be rubbing shoulders now akin to a Football Manager or Championship Manager style of game....

          So what does this installment bring?

          International Cricket Captain, in essence is all about the challenge of Captaining your chosen County cricket side to domestic glory in all competitions, and earning the opportunity along the way to captain your chosen Country on the International stage.

          Difficulty:

          I for one, am no cricket expert. However if you understand the basics of the game of cricket, then its fairly easy to pick up and play. If your an avid cricket fan, i'm thinking you'll be in cricket heaven.... well almost:-)

          The actual game iself has two difficulty levels, which are a choice of "Easy" or "Normal". Furthermore you only need a trusty mouse and perhaps the touch of a keyboard to play this game.

          Game Modes:

          There are five game modes in total the game player can choose to pick and play. Choose a combination of managing a County side and/or a International side. There are modes for a one off match series and a World Cup too. However the real mode this game will sell itself on, is the "full game" mode, where you begin with a County team and have to earn the right to captain your International side.

          Additionally outside of these game modes is the option for an "Internet Game". Where you can pit your wits online against other players.

          I have to say, the Internet game option is very much a hit and miss experience. Like with any online game play, you can have issues with servers/networks etc, and the reliability in this mode just isn't trustworthy in my experience. I've often had many error messages while playing or i've totally failed to get onto the network.

          Gameplay:

          The International Cricket Captain series has always been a strategy game based around a database of statistical detail, revolving around a 2D match engine that shows the progression of your game. However, take the 2D engine out of the game, and replace it with a 3D engine and in essence thats the only difference this version of Internationl Cricket Captain brings to the table.

          When the games first begins, your given a list of your selected squad, and an opportunity straight away to decide who you wish to retain, and a list of players available to sign.

          Your also given a squad budget too, this will define just which players you can bring in, and on what salary. The budget is a balancing act, because you have three areas to cater for, which include "Coaching", "Youth Team" and "Physio". How much investment you choose in these areas can have dramatic effect on your ability to sign players, plus the overall progression of your squad.

          Equally before the season starts you can also choose what kind of home pitch you want create. This can maximse either the strengths of your bowlers or batsmen and help achieve results.

          Prior to a match you can adjust the training of your team. This seems all very basic, when you consider just how much statistical depth there is to the game. Your left wondering, "if only" a more in depth training function could have been placed within the game. "Practice", "Technique" and "Physio" are the only training options.

          Again the statistics of teams and players are excellent with all updates for 2007. Once again the lovely little touches like being able to see the impending weather forecasts and a continous update too of the pitch and field conditions keep that sense of realism in tact.

          The game continues to offer a similar feel of control. You can only control a batsmans agression or option to keep strike, where as in bowling you seem to retain more control once again as to how you want your bowler to deliver the line and length.

          Fielding is once again a joy, you can choose either the presets or set your own field. If your a novice at the game of cricket, it can be a steep learning curve to step outside of those presets, but equally an education too!

          Now cricket by definition is for the part a slow game, so be perpared for a time consuming challenge. Playing one match on its own merit can take anything from 30 minutes to a few hours in International Cricket Captain. This all depends how in depth you want to play each game.

          This is one element i like, because it offers a hardcore cricket fan all the depth he/she could ask for with each game. while someone with moderate interest who doesn't want to get too overpowering with batting or bowling tactics, can set it to highlights mode and breeze through the game at a slightly quicker pace.

          You can choose to skip matches too, but i've found this part of the gameplay baffling. More often than not if you choose to "skip" playing any particular game, you will lose it, regardless of how good or bad the opposition is.

          The biggest disappointment has to be the poor attempt at going from a 2D match engine to the new 3D one. In theory it sounds a great leap forward, but in practice it detracts from the game and is shocking.

          At times its almost comical watching the bowler or batsmen in animated action. It gets to the point of being hilarious when you see the unbelievable body angles that the fielders take catches at after the batsmen has ballooned a shot into the air!

          However there are somes positive to take from the 3D engine. There is a sense of tension when a bowler appeals for LBW and you have to sit tight and wait to see umpires decision. The sounds of bat on ball, player appeals and the crowd are decent. Although sometimes when your batsman reaches a milestone, its not always acknowledged. The commentary (Johnation Agnew) is a reasonable effort too, and goes together well with the action.

          Graphics.

          The game menus are tidy, well presented and very clear. But where the graphics really matter within the game engine are truely dreadful. You can forgive graphics in a game for being poor if you've not got a fantastic graphics card in your machine, but when you've got some graphical power beneath your computer tower, and those players look like a late 90's attempt at computer graphics, then its a big let down. However, the lack of graphics is compensated for decent gameplay, so all is not lost.

          Addiction:

          This game does leave you going back for more, despite its graphical game engine flaw, there is an element of wanting to go back and challenging yourself again and again. There is nothing better than turning a youth player into a star and creating a team of stars from shrewd acquisitions in the end of season market.

          Overall Verdict:

          International Cricket Captain as a series is standing pretty much alone on the field of play. While this game delivers exactly what you would expect from a management type simulation game. You are are left wondering just what more could have been achieved, with a little more creativity and perhaps some stern competition from another game developer.

          Its fun, like most forms of cricket time consuming, but ultimately it is a challenge and will keep you occupied for hours. Here's hoping the next installment is a better step forward.......

          Pc Format: Prices normally between £9.99 - £19.99

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          28.06.2008 14:51
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          Pretty much on its own due to lack of competition

          I don't like cricket, I love it!
          When it comes to football management games there are a plethora available in all formats - in the modern day everyone wants to be the next Jose Mourinho or Alex Ferguson. Yet despite the recent rise in popularity of cricket in the UK (owed much to the Ashes win in 2005 and the advent of Twenty20) it is still difficult to find good quality cricket management games or in fact, any at all.

          The ICC series of games have been churned out with regularity and really have stood on their own, unopposed. Whether this is because nobody wants to play cricket management/captaincy games or whether the developers struggle to reach the right formula is anybodys guess really I suppose.
          Having bought the original ICC game in 2000, I felt that it was time to see if the game had evolved much after all these years and purchased the most recent edition, International Cricket Captain 3.

          I purchased the game from a local second hand game store for £5 but if you are looking for new, I see it is available on Amazon in PS2 format for £17.98.
          So it was time to put the game to the test. I logged in and decided to check out the available game modes. If you are looking for a straightforward career you can manage a Test team of your choice, a county side or even both if you so wish. Alternatively you can play a historic series of international matches.

          The accuracy of the information on players is varied in its sucess. I understand that it is difficult with so many players on the game but to use an example, to define two incredibly aggressive players in real-life like Misbah Ul-Haq and Albie(Johannes) Morkel as "defensive" in mentality when batting is quite ridiculous. Maybe i'm nit-picking.
          The game is let down really by it's pretty dreadful highlights option. The realism of the shots played by batsmen borders on the farcical and the commentary is erroneous and quite irritating at times and has not evolved in any way really.

          The best facility on the game is the online play function. This function allows you to pit your wits against other people on the game over the web - you must have a saved county game to qualify. This is really interesting because you have teams set in 2007 or teams set in 3007 because there are no restrictions on how many seasons you can have done to play this facility. The only real downside is that there are not enough online players at certain times of the day.

          You cannot fault the depth of the game from an informational point of view but its failure to evolve over 7 years (this game was released in 2007) is a major concern.
          I personally, really enjoy this game probably because there are so few alternatives and certainly not because it is a fantastic game or anything, because it is not. And for £5 it has been value, but I certainly wouldn't advocate anyone paying the £17.98 figure on offer on Amazon.

          If you love cricket and can find this cheap then it might be a worthwhile purchase.
          If you aren't really into cricket at all do not purchase this game because there isn't exactly a great game playing feature to fall back on. One to dodge, unless somebody gives it to you for free and you just want to give the Australian cricket team a stuffing! (They are pretty poor according to the makers of the game, clearly they do not know their stuff!)

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            17.09.2007 18:45
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            Good addictive simple game, jsut turn off the highlights.

            International Cricket Captain III

            This is the 3rd incarnation of the series in which you take control of a Domestic County cricket team, although the game is daubed Cricket Captain it is more of a Manager game as you control the team and don’t actually play the games just adjust tactics and the like during the match. The object of the game is to become the best team in the Domestic leagues. And also if called up you can also manage the international team of your choice too, in the hope to make them the best team in the world.

            Graphics:
            This Game is like most manager games in that it is mainly text based and you spend most of the time running the team with training and the like, but the game does have some graphics and in the menu’s they are fairly good. The game also boasts of a New 3D Highlights which in my opinion they really should not do as it is a poor attempt as players run through each other the crowd is flat and lifeless, and the batsmen play the same shots but the ball goes in different directions, all in all a half hearted attempt that looks like it was attached at the end at the last minute. You should be ably to play the game on any PC and also most laptops, I play it on my laptop as that was the reason I bought it for travel entertainment.

            Game play:
            This is where you get the most of the game it really shouldn’t have tried going down the 3D graphics route as it just detracts form the game play and you just turn it off as it becomes annoying, Anyway once you have started up and picked you team (I chose Glamorgan) and your Nationality (for international selection) you are thrown in at the first season with the squad already picked so all you need to deal with for the first season is Training, Physio, Team Selection and Match tactic’s. Now this is not as detailed and in depth as some of the other types of manager game out there but there are plenty of player and team stats to get your head around for team selection, there is also a form graph to show how well each player has been doing recently to help in this selection. Even though this is a very simple game to get the hang of it is surprisingly addictive to play. I have only had it for 3 months but have already played through 6 seasons and I managed to take Glamorgan from being one of the worst County teams to one of the best and at the end of my 5th season I even got selected to Captain the England team (woo hoo).

            Cost:
            From the Makes they were selling it for £26.99 on a download. But I think this is a bit much for what is a very simple game, but I managed to find it on Play.com for around £15 which is much better value for money.

            If you like cricket or even have an interest in it and like manager games this is a good buy as its surprisingly addictive yet simple to play. If your looking for a really in depth detailed manager game its probably best to go for one of the manager games

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