Reviewed on PC


Reviewed By: Tim Emmerich, Shepherd's Staff

Computer Platform: PC
Produced by: Lavamind
Price Range: $30
Learning curve time: 30 min.
Age level: 8+

Genre: SIM/Board Game
Christian Rating: 5 of 5
   (nothing offensive)
Gameplay: 4 of 5
Violence: 4 of 5
   (barely present)
Adult Content: 5 of 5

B  A  C  K  G  R  O  U  N  D  :
Gazillionaire Deluxe" is a fresh and unique approach to supply and demand. Set in a galaxy where most races are extra-terrestrial and travel between planets is commonplace, the goal is to be the best trader in the galaxy to become the first gazillionaire! Choose a ship, purchase and sell goods, and travel to nearby planets as you try to 'buy low & sell high.' You have opportunities to make improvements to your ship and even establish tax-gathering offices (don't forget to pick up your tax money once in a while). Indeed, you are even offered great opportunities that make some company's initial public offerings look attractive. All in all, it is fun race to the top as you are entertained by the original artwork, sound effects, and unique commodities. But don't forget to buy insurance!
Screen Capture from 'Gazillionaire Deluxe'
G  A  M  E  P  L  A  Y  :
Playing “Gazillionaire” is straight forward as you have clear menu choices controlled by the mouse pointer under Windows that lead you through the various stages of this turn-based game. So, it may feel like a board game, but you aren't timed in anyway. So, take as much time as you want or need for your turn. After you start out choosing a ship and starting capital, you soon realize your choices are numerous. You have complete freedom to buy lava lamps, kryptoons, or whatever commodities you want. You even have the choice not to pay your benefactor, Mr. Zinn, interest or principle on the start-up kubars (local currency) that he loaned you.

You can also make some extra kubars by carrying passengers along. Don't forget to set competitive pricing and advertise for your next planet. Add to this mix some zingy sounds and artwork and you realize you are having fun trying to make a kubar.

Getting a Loan Some random events are added that may delay your travels which may leave you screaming as a competitor beats you to a planet and buys up all the commodities you were after. Ship improvements are available, and while expensive, can help you be the one to get the planet first or carry more items to sell.

Other enjoyable aspects of the game include the planets you visit. Take time to visit the locals; sometimes beneficial results can be achieved (negative results are possible too!).

S  O  L  I  D     S  U  C  C  E  S  S  :
The easy to learn and follow gameplay in “Gazillionaire Deluxe” is a true success that other games should model after. Furthermore, the originality shines through, especially in the great sound effects! Care should be taken with amount of gameplay spent, or recovery groups like Gazillionaire Anonymous will need to be started.

The tutorial should win awards; it is so well done. It gradually introduces you to the game. As you progress, more features are brought into the game! It is extremely well-done!

A  R  E  A  S     F  O  R     I  M  P  R  O  V  E  M  E  N  T  :
There is real opportunity to tie-in the randomness of the events to make the game flow better. Perhaps the events could reflect more on the player's choices to participate in shady offers rather than how well the player's bottom line is doing.

Stye - Screen Capture from 'Gazillionaire Deluxe' This game is crying out for true multiplayer action. Over the Internet, a network, or even a serial cable! Having the players enter their turns in parallel would greatly improve the gamespeed. However, the PBEM (Play by Email) implementation works quite well. “Gazillionaire” is probably best played “hotseat” (multiple players around one computer). That way you can hear your opponent sob "You beat me to that planet and bought all the Kryptoons!"

Finally, LavaMind should expand the galaxy, and offer more and unique commodities to try and improve replay ability. Another nice feature that would've added icing to this delicious cake would have been a few select, well-done, cutscenes.

S  U  M  M  A  R  Y  :
An enjoyable game that could use more replay value for single players. For multiplayers and PBEM, the replay is more enticing. This game is highly recommended for younger players learning the value of money and goods. Be sure and play it with them. Again, seek out other human players to make the game more personal and enjoyable. You will enjoy the originality and zaniness of the game as your strive to horde kubars.

From a Christian standpoint, nothing is really offensive in "Gazillionaire Deluxe". Unless you have issues with space travel or capitalism or having too much fun! Or interacting with “aliens” and buying a Whaler-type ship that only has a 3-kuarp engine but tons of cargo space might get your goat. Seriously, this reviewer can't recall anything that stood out as being offense. If there is, it is fairly mild. “Gazillionaire Deluxe” is a mainstream game, so no specific Christian features to highlight.

Year of Release—1997

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this Christian Spotlight review are those of the reviewer (both ratings and recommendations), and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Films for Christ or the Christian Answers Network.

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