We all know that where the Nintendo 64 is concerned, third party titles are a mixed bag. Mind you, it has some really good third party titles and it has some really bad ones too. Most of the bad titles could have been great if not for the horrid analogue controls. Seems some people could get it right and some couldn't. It pleases me when I can review a game that get's it right, especially one that is easily overlooked by the general public and needs to be seen. Yes, Robotron 64 is easily a hidden treasure, and indeed we will look at whay in this review.
The Basics, Robotron is the first arcade game that I can think of that had duel sticks to control what was going on on the screen. You are to save the human race from the Robotrons that have taken over. Shoot every single one of them that you can to advance to the next levels. Don't forget to rescue the humans and avoid the Robotrons that you cannot kill. Yes, this is the synopsis of Robotron 2084 and the good thing is that it is also the synopsis for Robotron 64. Robotron 64 is a graphically enhanced version of Robotron X which was released for the PC and Playstation. Are the graphical enhancements that obvious? Yes they are. Unlike the PC and Playstation versions, you can now switch your views and also the characters look smoother and no longer like to dissapear off of the screen. Yeah, it was a problem with Robotron X and it ain't here in the 64 version. Take into fact also that you get no slow down either and you now have this game with more colors, more trippy graphics, a pulse pounding techno soundtrack that fits the mood of the gameplay and insanity around every corner. What more coult you want?
Robotron 64 in essence is to the original Robotron what Tempest 2000 is to Tempest, making it one Hell of a game. The graphics are gorgeous. I know I am putting some screen shots up, but remember, these are grainy and only represent what the game looks like. The game looks 10 times better when you are playing it. The colors are nice and crisp and everything stays smooth when it moves on the screen. These all add up to a visually stunning game, and on the Nintendo 64 even! The designs of the characters are awesome as they are what I would expect to see from the original Robotron designs in 3D. UI tell you, the giant walking brains are freakier than they were in the original game, trust me.Awesome.
The sound on this cart is also awesome. Between the soundtrack that blends classic sounding arcade tunes with some really well put together techno music will keep you zoned into the game. The few voices you hear from the characters are very well done and I can't help but get a grin when I r5escue "Grandpa" and he gives that old man laugh that is just funny. I can also say that the weapons fire and level elements sound great too. Not much more to tell here. Try the game out and try and disagree with me, I dare you.
Now, to the most important part of any game, the controls. They got it right on the money here. No shooting in the same direction you are running. Shoot in eight directions and do it easily. You can either use the four C buttons to shoot or even the analogue stick. I preffer the C buttons personally, but that's just me. Controlling your character in the screen is a breeze with the analogue, and even if that feels weird, go for the D-Pad and it all works out well. I can't complain here at all other than that this game needed a sequel.
Basically, this game screams nostalgia for the masses, has great controls, amazing sound, and also a challenging skill level for everyone. Powerups galore and is easily one of the cult classics for the Nintendo 64. This game is not a rental if you are a fan of the original. I strongly recommend buying it, especially because it can be had on the cheap.