CyberJudas: The Sequel to Shadow President
Review by Al Giovetti, 09/15/96
Genre: adventure simulation
Release: June 21, 1996
Developer: D. C. True Limited
Programmer: Brad Stock
Publisher: Merit Studios
Phone: 800-238-4277, 214-385-2553
Requirements: DOS 5.0, Windows 95, 486 DX, 33 MHz, 8 MB RAM (16 MB RAM recommended), SVGA, sound card, 2X CD ROM drive, 20 MB free hard disk space.
History: Sequel to the Shadow President, which was released in 1993 without much fanfare. We talked with Merit Studios President in Dallas and filmed him about this product last year. Merit has produced over 100 game titles since the company was formed in 1988.
Summary: CyberJudas is a simulation of World Politics and Global Espionage.
Plot: You are the president and you must stay in office at all costs. You must sort through the information that is fed to you and determine the truth even though the information varies from simple truth to out and out lies. You must consider the source and scope out your envy, greed, and ambition in your friends and enemies, and emerge still in office and not fall prey to being defeated by election, impeachment, military coup, or assassination.
Modes: The three modes of play are Presidential Simulator, Cabinet Wars, and the CyberJudas Gambit. In the Presidential simulator the goals are simple, stay in office by getting reelected, and avoiding impeachment, assassination, and revolts. In Cabinet Wars it is essential to sort through the misinformation your cabinet is feeding you to serve their own greedy ends. CyberJudas pits the president against a traitor or traitors in the cabinet that will do anything to replace you with themselves. In CyberJudas you must ride out three phases where the Cabinet members try to unseat you and identify and convict the traitors after the last phase to win.
Interface: You use a 600 page CIA World Factbook, a budget analysis, a system menu, the war room, a map room, and all of the Cabinet advisors. There is an immense amount of information, statistics, and other data to sort through including the leader effectiveness ratio (LER). Most of the information given is misinformation and misdirection. Speed can be adjusted to move the game along and to reduce the hours needed to play just a single term. On the fastest speed of two hours per second one Presidential term takes five hours of game play. Part of the game requires that you lead a subordinate away from their personal things so that you can rifle through them.
Artificial intelligence: Developed as a part of seven years research into the dynamics of Presidential decisions used as the basis for a doctoral thesis at Tuft’s University. All 200 countries of the world are in the simulation and play a role, as well as six cabinet posts who can be filled by a bank of ten personalities.
Graphics: The raytraced, three dimensional rendering with shadows, texture maps, and other nice details is very nice and well done. The resolution of the 256 color graphics is 640x480 pixels. Map displays zoom in to give very small detailed information.
Animation: Lifelike animation created with film cinematography techniques and movie special effects. Cyber actors smooth their ties and look you straight in the eye while lying.
Voice actors: Digital voices of actors are used throughout the game.
Music score: The menacing music hides in the background and provides an eerie and menacing undertone.
Sound effects: average
Multiplayer: This is a single player game.
Reviewers: Glenn felt the micromanagement interfered with the fun of the game. Ron feels the interface could be more intuitive. Kevin’s six page review is overwhelming, and I would like to know what CGI graphics are.
Johnny Wilson, Computer Gaming World, number 146, September, 1996, pg. 34-36, hot (100%)
Glenn Broderick, Computer Player, volume 3, number 4, September, 1996, pg. 78, 6/10, (60%).
Ron Dulin, http://www.gamespot.com/strategy/cyberjud/, (80%).
Barry Brenesal, http://www.pcgamesmag.com/games/May96/cyber596.html, B, (85%).
Yarlen, http://www.avault.com/yarlen/cjudas.html, 4.5/5, (90%)
Kevin Perry, Happy Puppy, http://happypuppy.com/pulse/reviews/pc/07_96/cyberjudas.html, recommended.
PC Games 4/5 (80%)