1 player, horizontal game
Shadowsoft, a newcomer to the Lynx development scene, takes video gamers back in time with their first release. The destination is 1984, where Williams Electronics' ROBOTRON: 2084 is taking arcades by storm. In a plot reminescent of the movie Terminator, you play a laser-firing mutant who must save the last humans of Earth from extermination by the mechanical Robotrons. Destroy all the Robotrons, and you travel to the next stage, with even more dangers.
Williams' video games were respected as true challenges, with no mercy for the weak, and Shadowsoft's version is no exception. ROBOTRON on the Lynx is just as fast and tough, with absolutely nothing missing nor abridged. The action is viewed from overhead, and you must navagate around each level, saving humans while keeping yourself alive. The difficulty can be set to one of five levels, though even the easiest is a challenge.
Anyone familliar with the original ROBOTRON will know that the controls will present a problem. In the arcade, two joysticks were used, allowing you to move and fire independently. In response, Shadowsoft has provided three different control schemes, using different methods of aiming and firing. This is an acceptable substitute, and each player will find a setting that works for himself.
ROBOTRON's faithfulness goes down to the smallest detail, as the sights and sounds of the arcade machine are duplicated exactly. Game elements are distinctive enough, though their may be some confusion in the heat of the battle. All other visuals are copied as well, right down to the storytelling attract mode. Similarly, the sounds of the original have been rendered exactly, down to the last zap and explosion. Most of the game is played in mono, though the moody title tune and the effect when you die are done in a subtle stereo.
ROBOTRON on the Lynx loses none of the intensity of the classic title. Though the controls are a minor sticking point, they can be worked with, leaving this a game of intense non-stop shooting action. If Shadowsoft's future works are as good as this, Lynx owners are in for a lot of fun.
GAMEPLAY: 8.5 GRAPHICS: 8 SOUND: 8.5 OVERALL: 8.5