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4  |  Bots Of Rehashes!
Darryl B. , 4/19/2007 11:02:34 PM

Wow! Rather than reviewing a game from a console that's been dead for 20+ years -- although occasionally I'll review a game that came out in the late 90s (especially if it's an online game) -- I'm actually reviewing a game (or a bunch of them, rather) that's BRAND SPANKING NEW (at the time of this writing)!

My mom bought my sister's kid the C. G. I. Robots movie last week, which came with a cd of 10 games. Naturally, I had to check it out, even though that many games with a big-name license on it (not to mention they're free) is usually a warning sign that CERTAINLY the quality can't be that great, as they're probably just rehashes of popular games.

And right I was! As predictable as that the movie's going to have a happy ending -- especially with the overdone "follow your dreams" crap (like that's actually going to help millions of people worldwide that saw this movie that feel they are stuck in dead-end jobs) -- this cd had better not be sold in stores separately, or at least for not much...hence why I don't know what kind of rarity rating to give to it, as I don't know if it's going to be a free DVD pack-in only, or whatever.

So, lets get the rehashed to death games out of the way already (just like the "dreams" message in the movie), shall we?

FREEFALL--there are some kind of tokens (or something) in rows all over the screen; more rise from the bottom as you play (which made me think, "hmmm, what falling?" It's more like rising!). If three adjoining tokens' colors match, when you click on 'em, they then -- guess what -- disappear! (Bet you didn't see that coming, eh, Nostradamus?) But wait, there's more! (Or not, being a rehash...)You have a certain number of rows to clear per level in order to make it to the next one; if the screen gets filled to the top with the tokens (or whatever they are), the game ends. This is exactly like a cross between the online games of J. T.'s Blocks (I think that's the name) and Collapse; however, it's tough just getting past level three. There are also annoying "popping" noises for when you clear out tokens, and having only a few, nearly identical colors (light green and blue-ish turquoise) makes it even more difficult. Stick to the originals (which had probably also been done before!).

MEMORY CHIP--been there, played that a million times too: there's a bunch of cards on the screen, you can only turn over two at a time, and when you get two that match, they'll disappear! Golly! Do this until you clear the whole screen of cards. Whee! Next.

WONDER CHOPPER--you control the character Wonderbot from the movie in this scrolling game where you, while flying over Robot City, have to dodge spare parts that speed towards you and collect points and hearts when you get bonked by the parts (or miss the points; either one will cause damage). The control with the mouse is fairly crappy, which there's no way to switch the control to the keyboard or anything, which is ridiculous. Ho hum.

DISH ASSIST--a bit of a clever name for this one, and it's got really amazing graphics, but is the game any good? Nah, it's only so-so, as it took me a while to figure out how to catch the dishes (you have to collect them in Wonderbot's small, outstretched hand) as they come down the conveyer belts; after you've either stacked several up and/or get a clear shot of stuffing them into Herb Copperbottom to be washed (who's eerily frozen onscreen, not moving at all, at bottom left), then you...keep on doing it...over and over and freakin' OVER, the game's just one VERY looooong freakin' level that doesn't stop until you break too many dishes; geez. More like Game Design Assist is what's needed here to make it entertaining (which it's not).

FENDER BENDER--urgh, you'll go blind over this one. There's not much going on here, you just have to match body parts with silhouette outlines of movie character Fender as they fly by (if you guess the correct parts, they'll start appearing on his body), as you have to match Fender's head, middle, and bottom sections together; missmatch too many, and the game's over. Why the hell is there no seizure warning on this one? Once the scrolling gets fast, you're going to feel like you're about to have one (or throw up).

ROBOJONGG--wow, I would say this almost saves this compilation, but there's like five million other Mahjongg games out there, so you've probably played other ones before. Tiles with Robots characters fill up the playfield, which two matching tiles can be eliminated at a time, which they usually have to be at the end of a column in order for this to be accomplished. There's not many ways you can screw up, you just have to beat your best time in clearing the screen. Addicting, but like I said, you've probably already played this before at some point. ("Missedjongg" is more like it.)

SHORT CIRCUIT--wtf? Here's one that I didn't get AT ALL. A circuit is burning down, you have to make a continuing circuit by choosing from patterns from the left side of the screen and putting them at the bottom center. The fuse burns down so damn fast you don't have enough time to even THINK about a pattern, much less be able to put them into place in time (?). Was this game even playtested? TWICE as much time would've worked...MAYBE. This game should've been scrapped from the get-go, like an unupgraded (is that a word?), obsolete robot that can't "fill a need" (as was said in the movie). Did I miss something here?

HIDE AND PEEK--this is like the Simon handheld from the 70s, where Simon gives you a pattern, and you must correctly repeat it...although this time, it's with robots, which pop out of the many, many canisters that are onscreen. This is actually a bit of a cute variation of a done to death theme, but with the LAMEST...SOUND...EFFECTS...EVER. Ugh. Whack yourself in the head with a wrench, that might produce better, more entertaining sounds than this game can.

SLIDE PUZZLE--ever get one of these from your parents for one of their long car trips, where you have three rows of three numbers you have to get in order by sliding them around? Depending on how you can do with those, this is either fun or mondo, mondo torture as you try to assemble a still of a character from the movie with all the correct slides in the proper places. You'll be either robust or rust with this one.

CROSSTOWN EXPRESS--here's another cute one to end out this review with, as you avoid obstacles that roll toward you on a track (from a scene from the movie), but you must catch colorful balls that are mixed in with everything else (except for the red ones). This one actually seems a bit fun -- possibly THE most fun out of all the games -- at first, then it starts getting old: how come it's just one level until the game ends? How difficult would it BE to program an end for the track before going onto another one? Sheesh.

This would get a higher rating from myself if I hadn't played any of these games before (or a million others similar to them), but unfortunately, I have. They're also all one player games only and they're mostly too difficult for the young child crowd the company is aiming for. I don't think this company is going to get very far if their upcoming game ideas are like this (done to death ones that aren't very enjoyable anyway), since I hadn't heard of the company before (I had to add them in to the database as it was), AND the printing on the cd itself isn't even very good, it's blurry! If not even the presentation of these rip-offs isn't very good either, then that's probably not exactly the best of signs. Good luck guys, you're going to need it.

Oh well, at least the movie package came jam-packed with extras for the young 'uns, like a coloring book, a coupon book for the DVD-buying adults, an enjoyable movie (for the younger ones and the older ones who are young at heart), and more. 4/10

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