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International Test Cricket

 

Cricket World Cup 99 by EA Sports is their third or fourth (if you include Cricket 97 Ashes Tour Edition as a separate release) cricket game.  The potentially good news (as far as I am concerned) is that Beam who developed all the others are not developing this release.  The PC version is being developed by Creative Assembly.  Hopefully a fresh approach will lead to a superior game as for the first time EA Sports face real competition in this genre.

The release date for EA Sports Cricket World Cup 99 is 7 May 1999 ahead of the actual 1999 ICC Cricket World Cup, which is to be held in England in May-June. The game has already gone gold (master CD has been produced). It is the only officially licensed interactive product for the Cricket World Cup, and includes all the real teams, uniforms, players, stadia and commentators under license as we have grown to expect, as well as a few surprises.

EA SPORTS have taken their interactive broadcasting style to new heights - playing the Cricket World Cup 99 game offers players a chance to go one step further than watching the real match live on TV - play in it! It features amazing 3D graphics, highly detailed motion captured players, play by play commentary by the legendary Richie Benaud and David Gower, multiple camera angles (including "batter's cam" and "stump cam"), amazingly realistic reproductions of the actual stadia to be used during the tournament (such as Lord's and The Oval), and just about anything else you can think of (and more) that puts you in the game. England team members Adam Hollioake, and his brother Ben Hollioake, were used in extensive motion capture sessions, with over 550 accurate moves recreated in this game. Dynamic batting, fielding, and bowling actions, as well as the many of the expressions of emotion that characterise the highly charged emotions of the final overs of a tense international one-day clash, help to immerse the user into the pressure cooker world of international cricket.

Perhaps the most exciting aspect of this game is the EA SPORTS "Live" concept. During the actual World Cup tournament, users will be able to log onto the EA SPORTS "Live" dedicated web site, and quickly download up to the minute weather conditions, teams, injuries, news, as well as the current form of players. These variables will be automatically incorporated into the game, whether the user is playing against the computer, or other gamers on-line, providing an insanely realistic sports experience.

A choice of arcade and simulation modes will ensure a good balance between depth and playability, together with numerous tactical options with detailed team management, strategy and field settings for the cricket enthusiasts. Budding Australian skippers will be in for a challenge as the computer teams' AI has been specially developed to respond to different match situations and settings, going for broke during tight run chases, and setting extremely aggressive fields whilst defending a total in the final overs.

This is the 'official' features list as found on the EA Sports webpage.

Along with the presentation that you'd expect of EA SPORTS, the whole look of the game will be "better than TV" with stunning 3D graphics and motion captured players, along with unique camera perspectives, and on-field and crowd sounds that just aren't possible on television. This unparalleled attention to detail continues through to the most accurate and up to minute player ratings and statistics available, as well as accurately modelled stadia, physics, pitch and weather conditions.

The ICC Cricket World Cup

bulletReal teams.
bulletReal players.
bulletReal stadiums (including Lord's, The Oval, and Old Trafford) from the biggest event in the cricketing world.

Presentation

bulletPlay by play commentary by "the voice of cricket" Richie Benaud and David Gower.
bulletMultiple camera angles: including unique batter's cam and stump cam views.
bulletUnlimited 3D camera perspectives.
bulletHardware Accelerated 3-D support (PC) and hi performance software engine for maximum performance on every supported PC.
bullet2 control methods for arcade style action, or "simulation" mode, giving the user the perfect balance of playability and depth.

Realism

bulletThe most accurate and up to date team and player ratings available from PA Sports, the world's leading supplier of sporting statistics. For the PC version, these statistics will be updatable regularly via dedicated EA SPORTS "Live" web sites enabling gamers to quickly download actual up to the minute world cup tournament statistics, including player injuries, form, team selections, and weather conditions.
bulletIncredibly accurate physics means that batting, bowling and fielding are more realistic than ever before. Accurately modelled weather and pitch conditions.

Strategy and Management

bulletIn-depth strategy mode allowing for detailed team management, strategy and in-game tactics to help your country win cricket's greatest prize.

Graphics

bulletHighly detailed motion captured players with over 600 moves captured from England One Day players Adam and Ben Hollioake.

Multiplayer

bulletNetwork or modem head to head gaming and "Virtual World Cup" events. Play against multiple opponents via the EASPORTS.Net channel on the Wireplay gaming network and participate in organised games, competitions and events.

Requirements

PCs without 3D accelerators

bulletP166
bullet32 Mb Ram
bullet1 Mb video card
bulletAny DirectX compatible sound card
bulletDirectX 6 only

PCs with 3D accelerators

bulletP200
bullet32 Mb Ram
bullet4 Mb 3D video card
bulletAny DirectX compatible sound card
bulletDirectX 6 only

Other Hardware supported

bulletAny 4 button Windows compatible gamepad (for example Microsoft Sidewinder or the Gravis Gamepad)

Playstation version

The playstation version of Cricket World Cup 99 was cancelled some time ago.  The official word from EA was

This product has been killed due to the delay in the PC development process at Creative Assembly, which didn't leave the PSX developers enough time to port the code across the platforms. The product would not have been on shelves until the very last days of the World Cup (if not missing it all together) which is not terribly good for an event based sku! However, the PC version of Cricket World Cup 99 is still on track and will ship on time prior to the actual World Cup tournament as planned.

However, there is some fantastic news to emerge out of all this gloom! On September 1, 1999 (still in FY00), we will be releasing a PSX cricket sku, tentatively called EA SPORTS ICC World Cricket. It will have everything the World Cup product was going to have and more, carrying an International Cricket Council license, and hopefully the endorsement of the newly formed International Players' Association, which will mean that for the first time ever EA, or anyone else for that matter, will have EXCLUSIVE rights to all the current and past first class cricketers from every cricketing nation. More news on this soon.

The product will have test match, one-day, 4 day, county, provincial, state   - you name it - action from all around the world - and it will be a Warne / Lara killer, and will sell for a lot longer than an event based sku due to the extra depth in content. This new PSX sku will effectively become the "FIFA" of the cricket gaming world, with all the players from all the leagues from etc. Stay tuned for more information when a new feature list has been finalised.

While missing the World Cup is disappointing news in the short term, this revised PSX cricket product is the launch of our console cricket franchise and we need to do it right. The PC World Cup product will facilitate making our mark in this space and generate pre launch hype - we can use the PC World Cup product to point to the PSX launch later in the year which will be bigger and better.  We will also follow up with annual PSX revisions at this same time, each year.

Revised: Saturday, 16 March 2013.
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