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Robocop 2 - MAME

Robocop 2
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Description of Robocop 2 ROM - MAME

You see, I love Robocop. I really do. And I really liked the Data East’s first arcade incarnation of the franchise: it was fast, it was slick and the level of detail in its sprites was incredible for 1988 (anyone noticed the pistol’s cocking grip sliding back when firing?). And I’d really, really wish I could say the same about Robocop 2, but I just can’t.

The simple 2D sidescrolling action has been replaced by a Final-Fight-style isometric perspective, which is in my opinion completely unjustifiable here, since (aside from a simple throwing move, triggered by pressing the fire button when close enough to an enemy) you can’t perform any brawler-type attacks throughout the game whatsoever, and the rest is just your average shooter. Thus—if anything—the added ability to move back and forth in addition to left and right merely adds to an unnecesary complexity of the controls and gives you a sore thumb on top of that all.

So, yes – the controlls had to be somewhat reworked, for them to acomodate the second axis of movement. Thus moving joystick down doesn’t make your character duck anymore but makes it move into the foreground instead; and—obviously—moving the joystick up no longer serves as ‘aim up’ but rather moves the character into the background. And along with the controls, some of the key game mechanics were changed as well. Namely, you don’t have just a single life anymore, but (depending on the DIP settings) three or more per an inserted coin.

But if you already think this is bad, that’s just the begining, folks. Not only you got this stupid isometric movement system the game doesn’t even need in the first place, but it had also got incredibly sluggish as well from the previous installment. Like really, it feels so damn sluggish, that even such a couch potato like me is probably more agile than the thing Data East’s trying to sell us here as a genuine Robocop®.

Yet what’s like the utermost dissapointment with Robocop 2 for me though, is that the iconic Auto-9 pistol sounds nothing like the actual Auto-9, both in the movie and the previous arcade game. Like… seriously, what were you thinking, you guys from Data East, huh? For me it was like the first thing I was looking forward to hear when I first booted up the game and I sincerely believe it must have been completely the same for any Robocop fan out there. But hell no. You’ve had to ruin it, haven’t you.

Now, don’t get me wrong. It’s not like you are going to die of boredom and disgust when playing Robocop 2, all I’m trying to say here is, well, that it just does not quite live up to the qualities and standards set by its predecessor, in my opinion.

I mean, the game still has some goodies to offer, nevertheless: for example, some of the enemy designs are quite cool I’d say (and the bosses are certainly more imaginative than those in the first Robocop). The animated cutscenes, which serve as the main device used to tell the (movie inspired) plot of the game, definitely add to the overall value as well. Yet the question is, whether these small positives outweight the otherwise degraded and not-so-catchy gameplay.

But that’s what I think, right? So just hit the download button and try the game yourself, anyway, because all that being said I still hold it to be worth giving a shot, even if it should be the first and last shot you gave it in your whole life.


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