#708 – Wall Street Kid

 

                          This is a fun cover. It’d be great if the “Top Secret” briefcase had green bills coming out the sides.

 

                                

                                                           That’s odd… I don’t remember any giant cockroaches in 1990.

 

PLAYERS: 1

PUBLISHER: Sofel

DEVELOPER: Sofel

GENRE: Simulation

RELEASE DATE: June 1990

 

Before 1990, only elite stock investors could hobnob on yachts, buy expensive jewelry for their mistresses, and throw mountains of cash at a hot stock tip. Wall Street Kid changed everything, enabling the schlubbiest of us to participate in rousing stock swap and a gaudy, Robin Leach lifestyle. You start off the game with $500,000 and an unquenchable thirst for more. Over the course of four months (after which the game ends), you’ll study the newspaper, learning which of the game’s twenty stocks are good buys, and which ones are rotten tornadoes. Different stock groups (of which there are four: Blue Chip, Speculative, Cyclical, and Growth) will be up for a week at a time, then move down. Unlike real life, if you purchase a good stock at the beginning of the week, it will probably stay up for the entire week. Your trusty computer will give you detailed information on all the stocks, and enable you to buy and sell. While you’re becoming a Wall Street Player, you’ll also need to find time to exercise two or three times a week, and dote on your fiancée. If you get consumed with greed, your body will bloat and you’ll lose the love of your life, effectively ending the game; who says love, health, and excessive wealth can’t co-exist! Time passes slowly while you’re trading, thankfully; taking care of your lady love and working out take up most of your day. As the months pass, different life circumstances will present themselves, usually one per week. For example, in the first month, a real estate agent will call you every week, asking if you’re interested in a million dollar house. You’d have to put most of the cash up-front, but if you don’t have the cash, pass on the offer – or become a better trader, fast.

 

The point of Wall Street Kid isn’t just to invest (though that is the most interesting aspect): it’s to show players what it’s theoretically like to be an up-and-coming young wealthy person. While the game’s “real life” elements are rudimentary, they make a certain degree of sense. If you’re in your twenties (despite the game’s title, the main character is no “kid”) and making gobs of money from buying and selling stocks, what do you do all day? Since trading only takes up your morning, you’ve got to keep up appearances: go to the gym, go shopping, check your portfolio, go out to eat, buy a house, drink heavily, go shopping again. Such a mind-numbing existence. Wall Street Kid replicates it well.

 

B-

 

 

                                                                John needs to learn when to keep his rich trap shut.

 

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  • I actually owned this as a kid. My grandmother bought it, and it wound up being one of “her games”, more or less. Not terribly exciting, but surprisingly hard to actually beat, seeing as you need to get basically $1,000,000 in one month, and the game doesn't make that easy to do whatsoever.

    • DylanCornelius

      Yeah, it's pretty tough. It's not hard to make some money, but a milli a month is ridiculous.

  • Sleepyweasel

    I wanted to love this game as a kind, but it is both hard and kind of boring. Revisiting it now it is not so much hard, but still kind of a bore. I managed to get the house and the boat, then I just lost interest. Neat idea though and I loved the real life companies with slight name changes.

    • DylanCornelius

      I agree, it's a better concept than it is a game. Maybe a little ahead of its time.

  • Robb K

    Hmmm, interesting sounding game. As a sim lover, I'll definitely have to check it out. Another good stock-trading game is Fortune Street for the Wii, loads of fun.

    • DylanCornelius

      Always wanted to try Fortune Street. I'll need to check it out now for sure.

  • AverageJoeEveryman

    That cover is AWESOME! I remember reading about this game in Nintendo Power.