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- They stole a million -

You are fed up with petty crimes and have decided to start your own criminal empire. You gather as much information you can about possible accomplices, targets and other things. Finally you are able to gather $55.000 in hard currency and you're off to start your first job.

The game consist of two parts, the first is where you prepare a robbery and the second part consist of planning the actual heist. The first part is played entirely from a menu system that will provide you with all the information. You start by selecting a building to rob and they range from a coin dealer to a big museum. There is plenty of information you can buy on the building themselves such as alarms, guards and most importantly where the exepensive stuff is hidden. Then you need to select your accomplices from a host of candidates each of which has a primary and secondary speciality. There are plenty of different skills like handling dynamite, cracking safes and electronic skills and it's up to you on how to handle the caper so choose wisely. Whatever you choose you must always have at least a driver in your team because you are always part of the heist and you can't drive. Finally choose a fence which after the job is done can sell the things for you but even here you must make a correct choice because they all have different abilities in selling certain items. Once you are done with all the info gathering and hiring you'll go to part two.

The second part consist of exactly planning the heist and you can tell your accomplices what to do. You see the building from a topdown view and you start outside the building near your car. The obvious thing here is to get into the building with the least amount of noise and then to take out any guards and security systems before getting the valueables. If you bought info on the security systems then not only will you be able to crack them easier but the objects which are protected by them will be highlighted as well making it easy to pick off the unprotected ones first. Among the commands you can give are lockpicking, openening and closing doors and ofcourse to grab any valuables. You have to be precise to the second when planning because your accomplices will only do what you have told them and if they encounter a closed door or if a security systems is still operational they will still try and do what you planned for them and often this will result in a failed heist.

The graphics aren't really worth mentioning as they are very simple but the game does contain a catchy soundtrack that plays at the title screen and when you commit the robbery.
This kind of game is incredibly rare and I know of only one other game where you can plan robberies like this. There are plenty of people to choose from to help in your crime but the locations you can rob is limited to only five. They are by no means easy tough and you'll have a difficult time just to get through the first one. This is also due to the fact that there is a random factor build in and sometimes you can do everything right but the cops will still get you so the thing is to try try again. This is a truly original strategy game and despite the fact that it can be a bit dry reading at times it is great fun to rob a place without it having any consequences for you.

Overal rating: 8.5/10

Erde Kaiser

This game was released for many different systems here are some notes:
Amstrad CPC Released in 1986.
Game has been tested but not completed with winAPE v2.0 A6.
This is exactly like the c64 version.
C64 Released in 1986.
Game has been tested but not completed with CCS64 v2.0 win.
The original version
ZX Spectrum Released in 1986.
Game has been tested but not completed with emuZwin v2.5.
Sadly this does not have the soundtrack but the rest of the game is all there.

Date added Jan-02-2005 12:41
Name They stole a million
Developer Ariolasoft
Publisher Ariolasoft
First released 1986
Genre Puzzle
Sponsored links  
Download Amstrad CPC, filesize: 43 Kb
Commodore 64, filesize: 61 Kb
ZX Spectrum, filesize: 39 Kb
Manual No manual available
Solve / Docs No solve available
Get strategy guide here

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