Commander in Chief  - Review

Commander in Chief
Ages: Mature

Want to be in Obama's shoes? Be careful what you wish for. I couldn't resist playing President. I previously reviewed Peacemaker, where I took on the role of Israel' Prime Minister - interesting and sobering. In CIC I played as a solo player - no Chief of Staff, no Cabinet, no one whispering in my ear.

I barreled into the game - not mashing buttons exactly but opening files and making changes to my liking. Within an hour - which is about 4 days (you can set how fast the time goes) my Secretary of Homeland Security had resigned, Secretary of Labor informed me of the rise in unemployment, 3400 hunters were marching on Boston, newspapers were staging a massive strike but the president of Human Solidarity expressed satisfaction with my policy.

Obviously not the way to go. While there was an in-game tutorial, no manual was included in the box. Then this potential president went into the game file and found a 32 page pdf file - way to go! There are instructions for the upper strip, bottom strip, left screen, right screen, sites on the map, and event icons; - and this is just to get you started. And you haven't even gotten to the budget, social unrest and wars. The second time around with a new slate, I cut our nuclear missile stockpile in half, ratified Kyoto, funded solar plants, and cut the student vacation days by a third, and the only fuss, so far, was the student's demonstration.

How well you do depends upon your score, you start out with 50 points. Public opinion, your party and persons of influence all contribute to your rating. Good relations and agreements with foreign countries can give your score a boost. I found that trying to determine what to do about the budget confusing - particularly right now. Handling military I saved for another day.

The game has versions in a number of countries, which is why you get artifacts like calling congress "parliament" and phony names for the two parties, but they are straight and up to date on president and vice president. When supplying capital investment for things like schools, you cannot choose a region but only a single state or the entire country. The game clearly takes serious playing to scope out and results will take time to settle, since every little act has it's pluses and minuses. Only one save game allowed - bummer. How can you try different scenarios? I would have liked to have the option for a woman president. The game requires knowledge and sophistication about many areas. It would be a fun learning experience to play it with a really experienced politico. Next best in probably online play.

Is this game for you ? Do you want to be President?

Fun Factor: Engrossing
Female Factor: No female president.

Reviewed by: Editor - 03/09

  • Commander in Chief
  • © Eversim/IGS
  • Platform(s): WVISTA XP
  • To Order: DVD $27.99
  • Game Site: