Circuit's Edge

Circuit's Edge is a computer game developed by Westwood Studios and released by Infocom in 1989. It was based on George Alec Effinger's 1987 novel When Gravity Fails. The game was a hybrid interactive fiction/role-playing game; it contained a window of text, a graphic window for depiction of the player's current location, and various menus and mini-windows for character statistics and other game functions.


The player assumes the role of Marîd Audran, a private detective. The game is set in "The Budayeen", an entertainment / criminal quarter in an unnamed city somewhere in the Mideast that is a seedy reflection of modern-day New Orleans. While running a series of errands/"business deals" for "Saied the Half-Hajj", a friend of Marîd's, Marîd is framed for the murder of a man named Kenji Carter. Although Marîd's influential patron Friedlander Bey clears him with the local police, Bey asks him to look into Carter's death. Doing so leads Marîd deep into the criminal underworld of the Budayeen.


Effinger's novel When Gravity Fails was the first in a series of three "Marîd Audran" books (followed by 1989's A Fire in the Sun and 1991's The Exile Kiss); Circuit's Edge takes place between the first and second novel.

Fun Facts

  • Circuit's Edge originally had the working title of Gravity's Edge.
  • A brothel in the Budayeen is called "The Leather Goddesses", a nod to Infocom's game Leather Goddesses of Phobos.
  • This game was not the only time Effinger was involved with Infocom. In 1990 he authored The Zork Chronicles, a fantasy novel taking place within the Zork universe.

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