Review by Matt Paprocki

Data East


Graphics: 7

Sound: 6

Gameplay: 6

Overall: 6

Thugs. Muggers. Chainsaw wielding maniacs. Giant robots equipped with sidewinder missiles, machine guns, and grenades. Yeah, "RoboCop: The Arcade Game" nicely captures downtown Detroit.

Ignoring most of the movie, players simply control, of course, RoboCop on his (its?) quest to save Detroit from a crime meltdown. OCP is the evil corporation looking to get rid of RoboCop in order to put their own robotic cop, ED-209, in his place. Completely on foot, the cyborg walks down city streets, taking out just about anybody that gets in his way.

It's pretty basic stuff. The key flaw is the usual licensed game problem. You can insert any generic character into the lead role and have the same game. It happens to be RoboCop simply because RoboCop was a great flick that hauled in a lot of cash. The addition of the popular movie icon does help add to the enjoyment level, but it doesn't make a great game.

Though things start off with Robo simply punching, it doesn't take long into the first stage for his leg compartment to open up to pull out the trusty handgun. That's how the rest of the game will be spent, using punches only when up close. Aside from pulling the trigger, the only other move available is a jump. It's quit limited to say the least.

Power-ups are spread liberally across the city, just not the one players happen to need most often. Stuck eating baby food has to be awful, but even here, at least it's something to give the players life back. It starts off easy enough and then things quickly pick up.

There are countless times when the game simply throws an unavoidable amount of firepower at you, leaving poor RoboCop no choice but to let all those shells pierce his exoskeleton. By the time you reach the final stage, it's just about time to accept the fact that death is near. Worse, depending on how the dip switches are set on the machine, players could be sent back to the very beginning of the stage when they die, or even crazier, to the very start of the game.

RoboCop himself is animated nicely and well detailed. You have to love seeing the leg open to reveal the pistol. The bosses are rather mundane, featuring far too many cheap variants on ED-209. You'll see at least 5 by the end. The stages are littered with the same amount of adversaries, though lots of new ones are introduced in the final two stages. A few moments exist where the hardware is taxed and slowdown becomes an issue. At least that gives the player a slight advantage.

The soundtrack features countless remixes of the movies memorable theme song. If it's not a variant on that theme, then the track is likely dull and lifeless. Digitized voice clips are included all over the place, giving some life to that little sprite on the screen. ED-209 gets in a few words as well. It's a solid effort, just not spectacular.

When things are moving along smoothly, "RoboCop" is an enjoyable game in the same vein of the other numerous platform shooters. The basic mechanics are solid enough to carry the title. Just don't expect this to be the be-all-end-all arcade action game.


Go to Digital Press HQ
Return to Digital Press Home

Last updated: Saturday, February 26, 2005 12:31 PM