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Game info

Balance of the Planet

Balance of the Planet
DeveloperChris Crawford Games
PublisherChris Crawford Games
Reviewed byndial
Balance of the Planet is a 1990 environment-based educational simulator developed by Chris Crawford and published for PC (DOS), Macintosh (Mac Plus, SE and Mac II series) and PC-98. It is not a gaming experience that can engage a gamer since it's main purpose is to teach. It seems more like a bunch of formulas that have a secret combination and can only be deciphered by educational iteration. Its wonderful intentions, important messages and great static graphics though, make this one a decent game!
Balance of the PlanetSTORY / GAMEPLAY
Solve the Earth's environmental problems. Recognizing the gravity of the environmental crisis, United Nations appointed you as their High Commissioner of the Environment. As the Earth's No1 policy-maker, you now have the powers to levy taxes on industry and grant subsidies to a variety of worthwhile activities! You must use this power wisely as you are responsible for all aspects of the environmental crisis. You are granted the ability to balance the world's economic well-being with the vitality of the earth's ecology. If your policies cripple industrial productivity, you will lose just as surely as if the world is destroyed by toxic pollution!
There are 150 different factors that go into the game. These include 150 screens depicting real-life environmental issues, 150 user-changeable equations for direct control of the simulation and 150 actual problems to solve. All factors are interrelated and, in general, Balance of the Planet incorporates a vast amount of information about the many issues that make up for the global environmental crisis: from acid rains to water pollution, nuclear accidents to global warming, consumable goods to starvation!
Despite the fact that Balance of the Planet is mainly designed as a teaching tool than a pure game, but with a procedural system and limited user interaction, it is quite fun as you chart your way through the array of problems and use your newly acquired knowledge to save the planet from destruction. You are called to keep the many knowledge base artifacts offered and avoid the rather sophisticated schematic of factors and problems that come up in the end.

The game's graphics consist of hundreds of nicely drawn static screens (either in b&w or with up to 16 colors, depending on the Macintosh model), as well as forms and reports to fill in, although the processing speed could be a little faster. As for the sound, Balance of the Planet is completely soundless.
  • Balance of the Planet
  • Balance of the Planet
  • Balance of the Planet
  • Balance of the Planet
  • Balance of the Planet
  • Balance of the Planet
  • Balance of the Planet
  • Balance of the Planet
  • Balance of the Planet
Hardware information


MacintoshCPU: Macintosh Classic (1984) and Macintosh Plus (1986), Macintosh SE and SE/30 (1987 and 1991 respectively) with Motorola MC68000 at 7.83 MHz
MEMORY: Macintosh Classic (128k, 512k), Macintosh Plus/SE (1MB expandable to 4MB), Macintosh SE/30 (1MB expandable to 128MB)
GRAPHICS: Macintosh Classic/Plus/SE with Black & White screen, 512x342 pixels
SOUND: Macintosh Classic/Plus/SE (internal speaker). 8-bit mono 22 kHz (support 8-bit sampled monaural sound sampled at the 22.25 kHz horizontal blanking rate)
The Macintosh (default) color palette
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