Black Monday is a stock market simulation for one to six players. The goal is to earn as much money as possible by the end of ten turns. On each turn you will have the option of buying and selling stocks. The main screen where you can buy or sell will show a list of stocks available, along with their price information and how many you own. Graphs are also available to show the history of a stock throughout the game in order to aid in making decisions. After each player has a turn buying and selling, the stock market closes for the night. When it opens again, you will see a news ticker summarizing the changes to stock prices and the players will again have an opportunity to buy or sell (this process repeats until the end of the game when the winner is determined). Although the price changes to stocks are random, you can attempt to influence the price somewhat by buying or selling large quantities of a stock. If a stock is doing very well, you may earn dividends or the stock may split. If you get into trouble, you can also visit the bank and take out a loan.
Scott Adams, best known for his comic strip "Dilbert," created Black Monday! back in 1987. In Black Monday!, you are a stock investor with $50,000 to spend, and the object is to make as much money as possible by buying and selling stocks. You can buy stocks from several major American corporations, including Coca Cola, US Steel, Electric Boat, American Airlines, and RCA.
In Black Monday!, each turn is one business day, so once you finish buying and selling, you will see what gains and losses the companies you invested in have made since you made your trades. As a result, you miss out on the action of Wall Street where trades are made constantly and stock changes happen rapidly while the markets are open. Black Monday! lets you play with several people on the same computer, where you and your opponents try to make the most money by the end of the simulation. Player 1 has an advantage in the game where he or she may directly influence stock prices by trading large amounts of shares before the other players can take their turn on the same business day.
The only graphics in Black Monday! are pictures of the New York City skyline at night when the market is closed, and Upper Manhattan from Liberty Island. There is also the title screen and graphs showing market trends. Unfortunately, everything is colored in five colors that do not go together at all: bright pink, bright green, grey, white, and black. This combination of colors is quite unpleasant to look at. There are also no sounds or music at all.
Black Monday! is by no means a completely accurate simulation of the New York Stock Exchange, but it is a great tool for getting a general idea of how the stock market works, and can be a fun game to play for an hour or two. The only replayability in Black Monday! is that you could try buying shares in other companies in new games, and there is enough variance in the game that stocks won't rise and fall the same way in two games.
Like the stock market your computer has just crashed! Now you can feel the full effects of losing it all!!! In this stockmarket strategy game you can compete against eachother (up to 5 players). The object of the game is to buy and sell large amounts of shares and make more money than your opponent(s).
Black Monday is a simple stock market simulation that manages to capture some aspects of the real market despite its primitive engine. The goal of the game is simple: amass the most amount of money (and thereby score) at the end of 10 turns.
There are many unrealistic factors in the game, all of which seem to be a result of technical limitations rather than design choice. The most aggravating of these omissions is the fact that stock price behavior seems to be random-- there is no news report of any kind that will give you a clue as to which way stock prices will go on the next turn. Even believers in random walk hypothesis of stock market (myself included) will likely frown on this implication that stock prices are not affected by anything at all in the real world. Also, stock price will be only be divided by two no matter how much it splits by (even for 3-for-1 and 4-for-1 splits), and every company's stock automatically splits at $140 or higher. Market practices that are now the norm, such as short-selling and limit orders, are also missing from the game. There are, however, some concessions to reality, e.g. you could influence the market price by selling large blocks of shares (250,000 shares or more-- laughable by today's standards when stocks are trading in the stratosphere, but relatively significant back then). You can also take out loans that will be periodically rewritten to the current interest rate, and be paid dividends by larger companies.
Overall, Black Monday is a far too simple simulation for anyone who's interested in how stock market actually behaves (for that, try Wall $treet Raider instead). Comprehensive in-game instructions and simple mechanics will provide some fun for beginners looking to practice basic stock market transactions. Up to 6 players can also compete, making it a decent party game for those nights when noone could find the Monopoly board.
The game was given a significant facelift and re-release as Stock Market in 1990. Try that version instead for a much better, more realistic stock market simulation and leave Black Monday as a curious piece of nostalgia only :)
People who downloaded Black Monday have also downloaded:
Capitalism Plus, Capitalism, Business Simulator, Campaign, Campaign II, Baron: The Real Estate Simulation, Corporate Raider, Balance of Power (1985 edition)
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