Short Circuit (Ocean) Review | Amstrad Action - Everygamegoing

Amstrad Action

Short Circuit
By Ocean
Amstrad CPC464

Published in Amstrad Action #19

Short Circuit

Bwilliant! Twuly, twuly, bwilliant! I've been playing it so much that I've hardly got any time to write the review. More "Rave"ing later.

The first part of Short Circuit is an arcade adventure and the second is an arcade game, set in the future where a Strategic Artificially Intelligent Nuclear Transport (S.A.I.N.T.) robot has blown a fuse or something. Ze mad professor who built it vants to tear it apart to see vot vent wrong! Well, that's the basis of the plot, but more unfolds.

You control a robot, a sort of a Simon Templar of the robotics world. In the first part, you have to try to figure out how to get out of the Maximum Security Compound (the AA Team get it?) and escape to freedom.

Short Circuit

There are lots and lots of rooms furnished with items of furniture ranging from coatstands to flowerpots.

You start off in a room equipped with a desk, coatstand, computer and a chest of drawers. There are two doors, one of which is locked. Through the other, is another room, furnished with, among other things, another computer. This one you can link with, using the Link program resident in your robot's memory, and download programs. There are three programs you can download: Search, Laser and Jump.

Eventually, you will need to have the Laser and the Jump programs in the robot's memory - which is limited to three programs, one of which must be the Link program.

Short Circuit

Once you have downloaded the Search program, you can explore the complex complex. By being in Search mode, and pressing Fire while pushing against an item of furniture, your robot will search the object. There are many little "fingies" which you can find in the furniture - for instance, in the coatstand in the first room is a Pass Card, and on the desk under the computer, is Remote Control. Wasn't it good of me to get you started like that?

Anyway, the upshot is that you must find the equipment needed to build a S.A.I.N.T. replica and the manual for it. Also, it is necessary to find the components needed to build the Laser and Jump mechanisms needed in the second part of the game.

To reach part 2, you must either escape from part 1, or press the keys O, C, E, A, N together. Either will prompt you to wait while part 2 is loaded.

Short Circuit

In part 2, your pursuers take the form of guards and other S.A.I.N.T.s after your grease! You must run away or shoot them while trying to find the van. All this must be done before the helicopter arrives - yes, a helicopter! Don't fret: you never get a chance to actually fly in it. I suppose even robots suffer from pterophobia! This part of the game looked a little less frustrating than the first. However, as often the case, it turned out to be a real...

Movement is only left to right, but you can turn around. As well as shooting the guards and ex-pals of yours, you have to jump or duck to avoid the abundant wildlife. It's not fair really, 'cos I've got a naturally sadistic nature, and really couldn't care less if some squirty little rodent got under the wheels of my well-greased chariot. But your robot gets a sudden attack of grief and remorse and pauses to see if the poor animal is hurt.

Puddles along the way will slow your robot to a crawl, so it's best to avoid them. Rivers will give you a bad case of instant rust - obviously your robot was made in Japan.

Short Circuit

Well guess what? I liked this game immensely. The graphics are good and the music is tremendous. The loading screen gave a good idea of what the graphics were going to be like. I've been entranced by this game since it left Sir Bob's hand. Even when I'm not playing it, I'm thinking about it. It really grabs you!

The first part, like the second part, employs set positions - objects start off in the same place every game. This is good, because it leaves you more time for the hard thinking part.

The second part is just as interesting as the first part but gives you an automatic judgement of how well you do by the distance you travel.

You know how you keep going back to Elite to see if you can complete the next mission? Well you will be doing that with this game.

Second Opinion

It comes as a shock to find a good game coming from a film licence, but even more so because it's from Ocean. I hope they've finally got their act together. The two games are excellent and have delightful graphics. The variety is the real clincher, with something for everyone.

Green Screen View

Both parts playable.


Graphics 71%
P. Excellent graphics and use of colour in part 1.
P. Very smooth scrolling in part 2.

Sonics 67%
N. No actual sound-effects.
P. The music makes up for the lack of effects.

Grab Factor 81%
P. The two parts are easy to get into.
N. Part 2 can be very frustrating.

Staying Power 88%
P. Both parts are hard to complete.
P. Lots of variety with the two parts.

Overall 86%
P. Shock, horror a good film licence.


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