Robo Army

Neo Geo

Review by Matt Paprocki



Graphics: 8

Sound: 8

Gameplay: 4

Overall: 4


roboarmy1.gif (17768 bytes)Trailing other beat-em-ups in the Neo Geo line-up Robo Army comes across as a bland, derivative, knock off. The premise is unique, and that's about the only thing that goes right. This is an arcade game through and through, which shows in the programming.

Players, whether solo or co-op, are destined to quit. Collision detection is obviously programmed to ignore direct contact, passing right through enemies that take multiple hits to go down. In the early going, you won't notice it, since most adversaries go down with a single punch.

roboarmy2.gif (20245 bytes)In later stages, it becomes glaring that the odds are against the person controlling these futuristic cyborgs. Boss fights are frustrating, especially a few specific ones where pulling in close enough to throw a punch isn't an offensive maneuver; it's suicide. Battles against other foes become hilarious, as the games obvious arcade nature shows right through with consistent counter attacks.

Worse, some enemies are small enough to either crawl below or above your reach. They need to make a move before being destroyed. These flaws are glaring, and could have easily been corrected to make this a great title.

roboarmy3.gif (17112 bytes)What's strange is that the game isn't hard. The frustration is there because of how obvious these issues are and what this could have been. The giant, half-screen sized sprites are beautiful, and the bosses are even larger. The upbeat, forceful soundtrack is even better. Controlling a cyborg is also a nice idea, and using smashed parts as weapons is used to great effect.

A short sequence breaks up the action as players repel down a wire. This is one of the better moments in the game, as the mechanics, hit detection, and the basic game engine works. If this were like the entire game, this would rank high in the original, non one-on-one fighting games for console. As it sadly is, it misses from a lack of any feeling of impact from the thrown punches, amongst all the other problems addressed here.


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Last updated: Saturday, September 10, 2005 01:07 AM