ZAPITALISM! DELUXE


Zapitalism combines beautifully rendered 3D graphic images with multi-player functionality in a game of business strategy. You will be able to make deals with the eccentric inhabitants of Zapinalia, invest in stocks & bonds, corner the market and construct mega stores. You can also venture out to explore the islands of Mermadan in search of treasure and mysterious relics. The first player to build a retail empire and outwit the competition wins. You can even play-by-email over the Internet with up to six players! 
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Capitalism is a funny old beast. On the one hand, it can inspire untold creativity in the pursuit of profit yet all too often it spirals into a dog-eat-dog society that breeds greed, poverty and vast inequality. So, let's play a game about it!

Zapitalism by LavaMind, of which this Deluxe edition came out in 1997, is a simply presented management sim with little graphical flourishes surrounding the pages of stats and graphs. The aim is to build a retail behemoth by buying small and selling large with a keen eye on supply and demand. You'll need a strategic mind to bury your competitors which plays a little like a tabletop board game. If playing in multiplayer (of which the eMail-based online variant no longer works), you take turns to perform a limited number of actions before the round comes back to you again. Most of the time, you'll buy stock to refill your warehouse but you'll want to expand as well.

Depending on the company you choose, you'll get a bonus. For example, Ag Briggs is apparently a nice guy to his employees so he gets to force them into poverty and underpay them without consequence. Hoffman, being an entertainer can use the inflated celebrity status that capitalism gives him and can travel for free. I found none on these perks affected the game to the point of being unbalanced, but it does add a small amount of strategy.

There is a free flash-based version of the game which can be found here, but I found the presentation there to be even more barren (it is the standard version after all). Even so, both lack the personality of other management sims from the likes of Bullfrog, Maxis or Sid Meier despite some efforts to spice things up a little. Zapitalism Deluxe, such as it is, is therefore little more than a fleeting curio.



To download the game, follow the link below. This custom installer exclusive to The Collection Chamber uses DOSBox running Microsoft Windows 3.1 to get the game working on modern systems. Digital Manual included (run Manual.bat). Tested on Windows 10.

File Size: 357 Mb.  Install Size: 625 Mb.  Need help? Consult the Collection Chamber FAQ

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Zapitalism! Deluxe is © LavaMind
Review, Cover Design and Installer created by me


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1 comment:

  1. "On the one hand, it can inspire untold creativity in the pursuit of profit yet all too often it spirals into a dog-eat-dog society that breeds greed, poverty and vast inequality."

    You've put your finger on it there! The paradox at the heart of capitalism is that it seems to have made things immeasurably better and immeasurably worse. We can't imagine life without it, but whether it's climate change, automation or austerity, it's looking increasingly certain that it will be the end of life as we know it.

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