Jahangir Khan World
Championship Squash - Rerelease
Copyright/Publisher: Krisalis. Programmed By: Andy Ware, Graphics By: Phil Hackney,
Music By: Matt Furniss, Genre: Mixed Sports, Release Year: 1990, Number of Players: 1 or 2

IAN 'UNFIT TO LIVE' OSBORNE makes an awful racket as he knocks his ball against a wall...

Is this man the greatest sporting superstar ever? World Champion at 17 and veteran of 500 matches over six-year period undefeated, no-one, but NO-ONE has dominated a sport like Jahangir has squash (Corky comes top of the Essex and District Trainspotter's Sumo League every year, but as he's the only member it doesn't count).

So will the game that bears his name live up to his illustrious reputation, or will it, like his opponents, be left behind?

Despite being one the oldest computer games ever, squash isn't very well covered on the C64. From the dawn of time there's Pong, a ridiculously simple bat-and-ball tennis sim that spawned football and squash variants.

Jonah Barrington's Squash hit the shelves in 1985, though it didn't exactly set the world alight, then came Jahangir Khan...Back in issue 76 Stu and Phil argued, 'However good a squash sim is, it'll never be a killer game as the sport doesn't convert that well'. They're right I suppose, but I love Jahangir to death!

Squash opponents
As comprehensive a sim as you could want, both world and club tournaments are on offer depending on which side of the tape you load. A tournament is divided into eight stages, each a sort of mini-league in which four to six players compete - everyone plays everyone else, then the top two players are promoted, the bottom two going down. If that fails to brab you, try the knockout cup challenge!

Each player has six individual stats, including stamina, speed, tactics and judgement - win a match and you can upgrade one of 'em. Any number of human bods can muck in, and if you're really sad you can watch two computer players compete. Several types of squash ball are offered, ranging from not-very-bouncy to very-bouncy-indeed. The bouncier the ball, the more time you get to react.

Needless to say all the options in the world wouldn't make up for poor gameplay, but no worries - Jahangir plays like a dream! Like all good racquet-sims the controls take a little getting sued to at first, but once mastered they're simplicity itself - long rallies and intricate rebound shots soon become the norm. Players don't move very fast, but an accurate player-to-ball speed is maintained.

The most impressive thing about the game screen is the groovy animation - it really is superb! The players 'spin' racquets at the beginning to decide who serves first, and even shake hands before starting. If they 'collide' they just pass through each other, which is a good thing. Emulating squash is complext obstruction laws would've made the game unplayable.

For all its outstanding, Jahangir Khan World Championship Squash is still limited by the restriction of it's host sport - just how good can a squash sim be? A blinding game in its own right, it certainly worked for me, but won't appeal to everyone. Well worth the risk at four quid though!

IAN! 81%

Balls To The Wall
Don't know the rules of squash? No worries!

There are three horizontal lines on the far wall of the squash court - a serve must hit the wall above the middle one, and below the topmost line, then land in your opponent's area.

After that the centre line can be ignored, and players merely have to bash the ball between the top and bottom lines, bouncing off the side and rear walls any number of times but only hitting the floor once.

Win a rally and you win a point or the serve - only the server can score. First player to score nine points wins the game, but if the score reaches eight-all the receiver has the option of playing to ten points instead.