While most NES games managed to avoid the plague of irritating futility that killed the Atari 2600, Cybernoid revives the mediocre formula that made so many of the 1st generation console games unsatisfying. I mean, the graphics are OK for the era, but Cybernoid has the three critical attributes of a video game that would make it annoying as fuck:
1. Repetitive, irritating music/sound effects.
2. A nearly impossible gameplay concept that requires superhuman reflexes…complimented by…
3. …repetitive, irritating levels.
What I find to be intriguing, is that according to Wikipedia, Cybernoid is a critical success. I find this to be intriguing, because I specifically recall renting the game after reading a review in Nintendo Power that declared it to be the most difficult game they have ever played. In fact, Cybernoid is so fucking difficult, that the game-player is given 9 lives. In this case, I am not so sure 9 is enough–in fact, you would need an anomalous mathematical quantity of lives…like googibalifintomolisillion lives. Inexplicably, the game has THREE difficulty settings: Easy, Hard and Lethal. Jesus Christ, isn’t Easy lethal?! I can only assume that setting Cybernoid to ‘lethal’ is an experience similar to watching that video cassette in The Ring
Anyway, the box itself claims that Cybernoid is an “international hit” which leads me to imagine Jean Girard twisting Ricky Bobby’s arm and demanding, “Say you like Cybernoid…”
So, as with any shitty video game, I will preface a description of the actual game-play with the lame-ass story (from Wikipedia) that is supposed to inspire you:
Pirates have raided the storage depots of the Federation and stolen valuable minerals, jewels, ammunition and the latest battle weaponry. The Cybernoid ship has been depatched[sic] with instructions to retrieve the stolen booty and to return it to storage within a specified time limit. The pirates have activated planetary defence systems and the Cybernoid will have to battle with these as well as the pirates themselves in order to retrieve the stolen booty.
WHAR’S ME BOOTY!?
As the..ahem…Cybernoid….you look kind of like a Toyota Prius with a giant squirt-gun attached to the bottom:
The weaponary and power-ups are about as lame as what you would expect from such a flaccid protagonist–little dots that emit from your gun. I think you can briefly clear the screen of all the enemies with a “bomb”, which is way less effective than you would think; more on that in a moment.
Basically, your goal is to survive each screen by navigating through a room until you can exit through the other side. Your ship kind of hovers around, and can…get this…shoot left OR right. Each room is littered with dangerous things you can’t touch without exploding, while volcanoes, other ships, little balls, and all kinds of shit that out numbers you is flying in your direction–thus, you have 9 lives…BECAUSE YOU WILL DIE CONSTANTLY.
Even if you retrieve the power-up that can clear the room of all enemies, it is kind of like the first sledge hammer at bottom of Level 1 in Donkey Kong: its more of a distraction will cause you to make a mistake and DIE AGAIN AND AGAIN, than a strategic advantage. Once the screen is cleared by the bomb, your amnesty lasts only a second, because all the same shit comes flying at you…again. Prepare to get really pissed when you finally pass the 3rd or 4th room, and then you fucking lose your last life.
Each room may look a little different, but its just your little pansy Cybernoid crashing into shit as your try to achieve the ultimate goal of exiting:
Go ahead, ruin five minutes of your life before getting bored and frustrated, by playing Cybernoid yourself.
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