Dec 222017
Economic management simulation game.
File GROT31.ZIP from The Programmer’s Corner in
Category Games and Entertainment
Economic management simulation game.
File Name File Size Zip Size Zip Type
GI0DR.DAT 20048 1458 deflated
GI0LD.DAT 2352 195 deflated
GI0LG.DAT 1652 184 deflated
GI0SD.DAT 7938 893 deflated
GIFACTRS.DAT 978 676 deflated
GISUMMRY.DAT 1372 186 deflated
GISYSLOG.DAT 23 23 stored
GROT.BAT 86 66 deflated
GROT31.DOC 33923 9639 deflated
GROT31.EXE 186976 69743 deflated
GROT31X.PCX 53957 6302 deflated
GROTBAT.TXT 542 186 deflated
GROTINIT.EXE 14048 7255 deflated
HARDCOPY.BAT 33 33 stored
READ1ST.BAT 34 34 stored
RESET.BAT 57 52 deflated
RESETBAT.TXT 1087 311 deflated

Download File GROT31.ZIP Here

Contents of the GROT31.DOC file

GROT31: A Shareware Program

GROT INC. (V3.1)

General Retail Operations Training
(C) 1989, 1993, P. K. Winter, Toronto, Ont.


[1] OVERVIEW . . . . . . . . . . . . . page 2

[2] SHAREWARE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4

[3] DISCLAIMER AND AGREEMENT . . . . . . . . 5

[4] REQUIREMENTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7

[5] FILES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8


[6.1] The Keyboard . . . . . . . . . . 9
[6.2] Beginning the Game . . . . . . . 10
[6.3] Sequence of Events . . . . . . . 10
[6.4] Decision Input . . . . . . . . . 11
[6.5] Reports . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
[6.6] Printed Report . . . . . . . . . 14

[7] HINTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15

[8] REGISTRATION . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18

GROT INC. (V3.1)


General Retail Operations Training, or GROT, is a simulation
game in which players act as managers of competing department
stores. GROT INC. is the name of a fictitious retail empire,
the subject of this management game.

There may be two, three, or four stores, all in the same
market area, and all affected by the management policies of
the competition. GROT is a non-zero-sum game; it is possible
for all stores to prosper or for all to suffer losses
depending on the players' strategies. During each period,
which corresponds to a week in real time, players examine
reports concerning the inventory, sales, financial state and
past performance of their stores. They make decisions to
change profit margins, goods ordered, number of sale items,
hiring and firing of staff, amount spent on advertising and
promotions. These decisions, along with those made by the
other players, will affect all the stores in the market area
for the current period, and may also have long term effects
extending over several periods. Each game takes between
twelve and twenty-six periods. For each game the number of
periods is determined randomly at the start. The manager of
the store which has the highest NET WORTH at the end of the
game is the winner.

As entertainment, GROT INC. is best played by two, three, or
four players. As a management training game, it may be
profitably played by one individual trying various management
styles on different stores, or by up to four teams of four
players each, with each player managing one department. A
composite report can be printed, so it is possible for teams
to retire with their reports to discuss their strategies in
private. If more time is required, games can be saved at the
end of any period, to be continued at the players'

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 2

GROT INC. (V3.1)

The model behind GROT INC. represents the dynamic complexity
that surfaces regularly as operational crises in real-life
retailing. Players can analyze both the short- and the long-
term impact of their decisions. But, as they would in life,
players of GROT will show a wide range of reactions to eroding
profits, declining sales, and decreased market share. Early
reactions are, typically, characterized by lack of strategy,
cautious focus on a single event, overshoots in adjustments
which exacerbate the situation, and panic. During the next
phase, GROT players discover that some decisions have a
delayed effect. (The delayed effect is also known as the
"take two aspirins and wait" rule of business.) The
experienced player will have developed a feel for the effective
range of adjustments of such things as inventory, margins, and
staffing. At this stage the player has learned to exploit the
cause-and-effect relationships in the entire GROT market area.

Playing time for GROT INC. depends on the amount of time spent
in analysis of reports; whole games may be played in an hour
or, if all reports are analyzed, a single period could take
that much time.

The author of GROT INC. does not claim that the retailing
model used in this game is an accurate reflection of reality.
However, the model contains many variables which behave as
they might do in the real world, and players will find
considerable challenge in coming to grips with the complex
internal reality of GROT INC.

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 3

GROT INC. (V3.1)


Shareware distribution gives users a chance to try software
before buying it. If you try a Shareware program and continue
using it, you are expected to register. Individual programs
differ on details -- some request registration while others
require it, some specify a maximum trial period. With
registration, you get anything from the simple right to
continue using the software to an updated program with printed

Copyright laws apply to both Shareware and commercial
software, and the copyright holder retains all rights, with a
few specific exceptions as stated below. Shareware authors
are accomplished programmers, just like commercial authors,
and the programs are of comparable quality. (In both cases,
there are good programs and bad ones!) The main difference is
in the method of distribution. The author specifically grants
the right to copy and distribute the software, either to all
and sundry or to a specific group. For example, some authors
require written permission before a commercial disk vendor may
copy their Shareware.

Shareware is a distribution method, not a type of software.
You should find software that suits your needs and pocketbook,
whether it's commercial or Shareware. The Shareware system
makes fitting your needs easier, because you can try before
you buy. And because the overhead is low, prices are low
also. Shareware has the ultimate money-back guarantee -- if
you don't use the product, you don't pay for it.

"This program is produced by a member of the Association of
Shareware Professionals (ASP). ASP wants to make sure that
the shareware principle works for you. If you are unable to
resolve a shareware-related problem with an ASP member by
contacting the member directly, ASP may be able to help.
The ASP Ombudsmen can help you resolve a dispute or problem
with the an ASP member, but does not provide technical
support for members' products. Please write to the ASP
Ombudsman at 545 Grover Road, Muskegon, MI 49442 or send
a CompuServe message via CompuServe Mail to ASP
Ombudsman 70007,3536."

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 4

GROT INC. (V3.1)


GROT INC., a.k.a. GROT31 or GROT, program and associated
documentation, on hardcopy and on magnetic media, is
copyrighted and the author, P.K. Winter, reserves all rights.
The GROT software and associated documentation are provided
without warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied.
The author specifically disclaims any implied warranties of
merchantability or fitness of the software and documentation
for any particular purpose. In no event will the author be
liable for any damages, including any lost profits, lost
savings, or other incidental or consequential damages arising
out of the use or the inability to use this software. The
author reserves the right to make any changes in the software
and in this documentation at any time without obligation to
notify anyone of such changes.

GROT is a "shareware program" and is provided at no charge to
the user for evaluation. Feel free to share it with friends,
but please do not give it away altered or as part of another
system. The essence of "user-supported" software is to
provide personal computer users with quality software without
high prices, and yet to provide incentive for programmers to
continue to develop new products. If you find this program
useful, entertaining, or educational and continue to use GROT
after a reasonable trial period, please submit a registration
fee of $20.00 to the author.

Commercial or institutional users of GROT must register and
pay for their copies of GROT within 30 days of first use. The
Site-License fee for educational institutions is $40.00. The
Site-License for corporations is $60.00.

Anyone distributing GROT for any kind of remuneration must
first contact the author at the address below for
authorization. This authorization will be automatically
granted to distributors recognized by the Association of
Shareware Professionals (ASP) as adhering to its guidelines
for shareware distributors, and such distributors may begin
offering GROT immediately, however the author must be advised
so that the distributor can be kept up-to-date with the latest
version of GROT.

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 5

GROT INC. (V3.1)

You are encouraged to pass a copy of GROT to your friends for
evaluation. Please encourage them to register their copy if
they find that they can use it. All registered users will
receive a copy of the latest, "registered" version of GROT
with notification of updates.

Please submit your registration fee, questions, or comments

P. K. Winter
69 Summerhill Ave
Toronto, Ont., M4T 1A9
CompuServe 71213,1337

- GROT INC. is a trademark of P. K. Winter.

- IBM is a registered trademark, and PC/XT, PC/AT, PS/2,
and PC-DOS are trademarks of International Business
Machines Corporation.

- EPSON FX-80, EPSON FX-85, EPSON LQ-570 are registered
trademarks of EPSON America, Inc.

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 6

GROT INC. (V3.1)


To use GROT you require a 386SX or 486 based PS/2 or PC/AT
compatible micro computer with a minimum of 512K RAM, one 360K
floppy disk drive, and a color (VGA) display screen.

GROT INC. can run off a floppy disk but ideally it should be
installed on a hard drive. In either case, all components of
GROT INC. must be in the same subdirectory.

Before you play GROT, check your CONGIG.SYS file; it should
have at least FILES=16. Consult your DOS manual for details
about CONFIG.SYS and FILES. If FILES was set to less than 16,
update your CONFIG.SYS and re-boot your system before starting

Version 3.1 of GROT was written in Turbo Pascal (V6.0) under
DOS 5.0 on a 486 machine. This version of GROT requires a VGA
Multifrequency display that supports display mode Hex'12' (16
color, 640x480 resolution). GROT uses a Timer ISR. The 'old'
timer interrupt is restored on exit from GROT.

GROT (V3.1) appears to run without problems under Windows 3.1.
However, for this version of GROT, Windows is not the target
environment and thus there are no guarantees ... There is a
definite performance advantage in using a true 486 machine
with the math co-processor.

To start GROT INC., key in GROT after the DOS system prompt
(e.g. C> or A>).


The RESET.EXE program provided is used to initialize
all the GROT files, tables, and market areas. We
recommend that when you want a fresh start, use RESET.

Do not erase or modify any of the datasets on the
GROT INC. diskette!

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 7

GROT INC. (V3.1)


READ1ST BAT run this first ...
RESET BAT used to reset GROT
GROT BAT this invokes GROT31.EXE
HARDCOPY BAT prints the GROT documentation

READ1ST TXT text files used by the above .BAT files

GISYSLOG DAT all the .DAT files are essential to
GIFACTRS DAT the GROT simulation and should not be
GISUMMRY DAT altered by any other means than the

GROT31 EXE the main GROT program
GROTINIT EXE program that re-initializes all
simulation variables

READ EXE program for reading text files

GROT31X PCX the GROT cover screen; the program fails
if this file is altered in any way

GROT31 DOC this documentation

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 8

GROT INC. (V3.1)



Keys used in GROT INC. include all the alphanumeric keys and a
number of keys that have special meaning. Press ...

< F1 > to indicate that the manager of Store No. 1 will
enter decisions or view reports

< F2 > to indicate that the manager of Store No. 2 will
enter decisions or view reports

< F3 > to indicate that the manager of Store No. 3 will
enter decisions or view reports

< F4 > to indicate that the manager of Store No. 4 will
enter decisions or view reports

< F10 > to signal that decisions for the current period have
been completed

< Esc > to exit from GROT INC. at any time

the key to begin the input of decisions and
to complete the input of each decision

< End > to return to the Main Screen from any of the others
or, if the Main Screen is showing, the use of this
key causes the results of all the decisions in the
market area for that period to be calculated

The display of three asterisks ( *** ) on the bottom line of
the screen following any message means "Press any key to
continue ..."

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 9

GROT INC. (V3.1)


The first screen which will appear is the Summary of Games
Saved. GROT INC. can save up to seven games, which are
designated market areas A to G. To begin a new game, press 1
for Start New Market. The screen that now appears is the Main


When a period begins, the Main Menu appears and 'Store No.'
will be blinking. Press the appropriate function key (F1, F2,
F3, or F4) to indicate which store manager is to have a turn.
This causes the store manager's name to appear with the top
portion of the screen indicating general information about how
the store did in the previous period (Total Sales, Gross
Margins, Net Profit, and Net Worth).

During a turn, there are several things you may do. Press the
appropriate key from the Main Menu to view any of the various
financial reports. Press < R > when the printed hardcopy of
the composite reports is required for in-depth analysis. To
change any of the management decisions, press < I > to reach
the Decision Input Screen. All reports may be viewed, and
decisions may be input in any order any number of times. To
finalize decisions, press < F10 > from the Main Menu.
Histograms, option < H >, will give you a valuable graphic
representation as to how your store is doing.

It is not necessary for players to take turns in any
particular order. Moreover, it is not necessary for one
player to finalize decisions before any other player has a
turn. All screens are available and all decisions are
changeable any number of times until players finalize their
decisions by pressing < F10 >. To end a period, press < END >
from the Main Menu. The use of the < END > key to signal the
end of a period is accepted only after decisions have been
finalized for all the stores.

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 10

GROT INC. (V3.1)

When seven previous games have been saved and you wish to
start a new game, GROT will delete the oldest finished game.
If there are no finished games then GROT will delete the game
with the oldest time-stamp. To prevent the loss of any of the
earlier simulations, copy and save the .DAT files on a


To view the Decision Input screen, press < I > from the Main
Menu. During each period you may alter eighteen factors on
the Decision Input screen. These decisions do not only affect
the current period, but may also have long term effects.

The column marked LAST indicates the choices that were made
in the previous period. The CURRENT column is initially
the same as the LAST column. The `input' process is
started by pressing the < ENTER > key. As changes are
entered in the column marked INPUT, the figures are updated
immediately. To move the cursor to the desired position press
< ENTER > or the UP/DOWN arrow keys.

NOTE: Weekly decisions input are re-applied week after week
until the transaction is changed. For example, if 2 new staff
are added to a department, 2 more staff will be added week
after week until the staff increase is changed to zero.


'Margin' is the difference between cost and selling price of a
commodity. The margin set for each department will in
practice be reduced by various amounts that reflect several
types of marketing losses such as shoplifting, style changes,
excess inventory, spoilage, etc. Margins are further reduced
by any sale items which are sold at a discount. If margins
are increased in a particular store, sales will decrease
because customers will shop in stores where prices are lower.
However, customer loyalty to the four departments is
distinctly different, so raising margins may have little
effect in some departments, and more effect in others. If the
margins of all the stores in a market area are raised then
total sales will fall as customers move to other areas to

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 11

GROT INC. (V3.1)


It is necessary to order enough stock so that orders and
inventory will cover sales. Volume of sales can be predicted
from sales in past periods. (See Report C, and Report O).
In order to prevent stockouts, inventory must be maintained
(see Report G ) but excessive inventory ties up cash and
results in marketing losses which reduce profits.


Sale items are sold at a smaller margin than regular items in
a department. While profit on sale items will therefore be
lower than on regular merchandise, sales do attract new
customers to the store, some of whom will return in the
following period. The effect of sale items in attracting
customers varies from department to department.


It is advisable to advertise to attract customers, but
excessive advertising is wasteful. Similarly, any coupons or
special offers increase sales, but not at a constant rate.


Employees in Department 2 are paid a higher hourly wage than
employees in the rest of the store, who may be interchanged
among departments. All staff are guaranteed 30 hours per week
at their basic wage, with any overtime over 40 hours per week
paid at time-and-a-half. Report 0 indicates the number of
employees for the previous period and the number of hours they
worked. Moderate amounts of overtime do not affect staff
morale and have no effect on sales, but excessive overtime,
especially by the more highly skilled workers in Department 2,
causes lower morale and subsequent alienation of customers.

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 12

GROT INC. (V3.1)


Fixed liabilities (see Report B ) are charged the lowest
rate of interest and are not repaid during the game. If a
decision is made to borrow money, the interest charged will be
slightly higher than that charged on fixed liabilities. If
there is not enough cash on hand to cover expenses, an
emergency loan will be automatically issued, with a higher
interest rate (see Report C ). If the store is in an
unfavorable financial condition as determined by the ratio of
net worth to fixed assets (see Report G ), then this interest
rate will be even higher.


All the reports available from the Main Menu have similar
layout of basic information at the top and bottom of the

At the TOP of the screen the following is displayed:

Market Area (A to G)
Store No. (Player 1 to 4)
Period (1 to 26)
Title of the Report

At the BOTTOM of the screen the following is displayed:

Press < END > to return ...
Press < ESC > to quit GROT ...

Again, the following are the reports available any time to
all players during a game.

[B] Balance Sheet
[C] Cash Management
[G] General Report
[N] Net Worth Comparison
[O] Operating Statement
[P] Past Performance
[R] Printed Report
[S] Share of Market
[H] Histogram ( VGA Graphics )

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 13

GROT INC. (V3.1)


Select < R > from the main menu to generate hardcopy output.
You will need an EPSON FX or EPSON LQ compatible printer.

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 14

GROT INC. (V3.1)


If your primary purpose in using GROT INC. is entertainment,
then we suggest that you read the following hints and notes.
If, however, the objective in using GROT INC. is educational
or management training in a more formal setting, then we
recommend that the instructor should control the availability
of the following hints.


customers are attracted to department stores that
offer specials and promotional items

at the time when you are about to take charge of
the GROT department store, the store has
experienced moderate profits with a slight
downward trend

prices and sales volumes were relatively stable
during the past year

the starting decision variables (margins, goods
ordered, etc.) are typical of your predecessor's

as a general rule, sales depend on both current
and past decisions

you are cautioned not to make radical changes in
your store at the outset until you develop some
understanding of sensitivity of the model with
respect to the decision variables

shift in sales volumes among competing stores is
based in part on deviations from the average
margin in the market

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 15

GROT INC. (V3.1)


you have no control over the cost of goods sold

margins are affected by the special sales and
marketing losses

margins affect sales differently in different

if in any one of the four departments you set
margins higher than those of the competition, then
you should expect to see some decrease in the
volume of sales


large orders might cause excessive inventory which
leads to marketing losses and lower profits

to avoid stock-outs in any department, the new
orders plus stock on hand must cover sales

for Department 3 the inventory should be
maintained between $45,000 and $50,000; you are
left to discover the optimal inventory levels for
the other three departments

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 16

GROT INC. (V3.1)


specials will attract customers and, as well will
inspire some customer loyalty

the maximum number of specials in Department 1 is
nine, in all other departments the maximum number
of specials is three

specials can increase sales by as much as 6% in
Department 4; in other departments the impact of
specials is somewhat lower and it is left to you
to work out the precise relationship between sales
and specials

specials in one department can lead to a slight
increase of sales in other departments

to be effective, specials must be more than 2% and
less than 6% of sales; it is left to you to
discover the effective range of specials as a
percentage of sales

an increase in specials will increase sales, but
not at a constant rate


advertising increases sales, but not, however, at
a constant rate

advertising expenditures below a fixed figure or
above a fixed figure has no beneficial effect on
sales and profits; it is left to you to discover
the effective advertising range

specials are more effective when advertised; it
is left to the student to discover the precise
correlation between advertising and specials

(C) 1989,1993, P.K. Winter, Toronto, Ont. 17

GROT INC. (V3.1)


Personal license $20.00
Site-License (schools) $40.00
Site-License (corporate) $60.00

PAYMENT ENCLOSED ___________________________

NAME ______________________________________

ADDRESS ______________________________________

COMPANY ______________________________________

PHONE (___) ___ - ____

FAX (___) ___ - ____

DATE _________________

Please return this registration with any questions or comments
you may have to:

P. K. Winter
69 Summerhill Ave
Toronto, Ont., M4T 1A9

CompuServe 71213,1337


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