Review by Matt Paprocki



Graphics: 8

Sound: 8

Gameplay: 8

Overall: 8

Konami rocks. Ok, we all know that, but going back and playing a game like Cybernator reinforces that point. It's not perfect, nor is Konami's best of the 16-bit era, but the fact that you can still go back and play it today without the game losing its impact proves this one is an underrated classic.

Cybernator takes players through 7 levels of action inside a pretty spectacular mech. Not only does the mech have a wide array of firepower, but it can also use jets to take off into the air for flying segments. The wise choice to mix up the gameplay keeps the experience lively throughout the game. There is no downtime in Cybernator.

The game has a very Contra-esque feel from the start, but the second level takes the game into the horizontal shooter realm, even allowing for some free flight segments. Oddly, the gameplay is always broken by text messages from your home base. The game completely stops, regardless of what you're doing, to advance the story. It's a small annoyance, but it can lead to a few unnecessary hits.

While it doesn't push the SNES to it's limits, Cybernator does provide a nice graphical package. Slowdown is rare and the mech is animated superbly. Fighting the bosses usually results in cramped quarters as most of them take up a large portion of the screen. Even some of the backgrounds can be damaged (to an extent). The only real problem is the ridiculously large explosions that occur when taking out bigger opponents. The screen lights up in a mess of orange and white pixels. It's not pretty.

The soundtrack to the game is limited, but what is included can't be touched by many other games on the console. The thumping background tracks keep the pace of the onscreen action and keep players moving along. The explosions send off a lot of bass, but the rest of the effects are generally lost.

Cybernator does falter in a few areas. The game is occasionally unfair. Your mech is quite a large sprite so avoiding some of the incoming attacks is almost impossible (the blocking aspect isn't perfect). The free-flying sections are hard to control and you'll find yourself constantly in the wrong position to shoot enemies. Add in the fact that the game uses every button on the controller and you've got a game that seems overly complicated for what it is.

This is one of those must own games on the console. It's a highly underrated shooter that never seems to get the respect it deserves and if this introduces one person to the game, then I've done my civic duty for the year. Also, if you like this one, check out Metal Warriors. It's almost like a spiritual sequel to this game.


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Last updated: Sunday, October 31, 2004 09:28 AM