Knight Rider (Ocean) Review | Amstrad Action - Everygamegoing

Amstrad Action

Knight Rider
By Ocean
Amstrad CPC464

Published in Amstrad Action #14

Knight Rider

Well, I hope you haven't been holding your breath for this one because KITT appears to have been worked on in Ocean's garage for quite a while. Now he and his do-gooder driver are out, but when you get a look at the game you're going to wish they'd scrapped him and cubed him in a metal-crusher.

The game begins with our eager TV heroes revving to go in Atlanta. They can choose one of four dastardly plots to foil within a time limit. A network of roads connects several major cities in the Excited States, and at each city there is an operational base of some kind. These consist of a single screen. On visiting the one at Atlanta you'll discover where you need to go first.

You choose a city off a menu and then have to drive there. The view is from the driver's seat - the only things you'll see while travelling between cities are enemy helicopters and the road.

Knight Rider

You can choose to drive or shoot helicopters, while KITT performs the other job. It's best to drive yourself and let KITT do the shooting, since you can drive twice as fast and he'll probably shoot straighter.

Driving is just a matter of accelerating as hard as possible and steering around the occasional, incredibly predictable, bend. It takes no skill at all. Even damage caused by missiles from the helicopters and bumps with the side of the road doesn't liven up the proceedings. If you do want to shoot helicopters, it's just a matter of guiding a cursor around the screen and firing an invisible laser.

After getting bored at the wheel for an eternity you arrive at the city and can enter the operational base there. You now control a figure viewed from above who has to get from one side of a room to the other, avoiding contact with the guards there.

This is the really 'exciting' bit: the guards can shoot at you or touch you to knock a lot off the time limit. The guards at some bases will home-in on you: because they're 'trained killers' - which means they aren't wearing blinkers, unlike the rest of them who keep to movement patterns as you go straight by them, merely letting loose the odd bullet if you're in their path.

If you get to the other side of the room, you're given the next location to go to. If you can resist the overwhelming urge to hit the reset keys, you're off on another car ride over a featureless highway.

The graphics are bad, the in-game sound is bad, the collision detection at bases is lousy, the gameplay is boring and, as licensing deals go, this is the worst.

Second Opinion

It really looked at one point as if this one wasn't going to come out at all, but no such luck. If this was a budget game it would be miserable value for money. There's almost nothing to it, and what there is looks dated and poorly executed. I'm amazed that Ocean have the gall to charge money for this at all, but £8.95 is just comical!

My scanners are picking up a naff game, Michael.

Green Screen View

You can still see well enough to play, I'm afraid.

First Day Target Score

Stay awake.

Good News

P. I liked the title tune.

Bad News

N. Unimpressive graphics.
N. Bad collision detection at bases.
N. Monotonous gameplay.
N. The worst-ever licensing deal.
N. You have to wait for very slow-scrolling messages.

Bob Wade

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