Robonauts Review


I was browsing the Nintendo Switch eShop recently and Robonauts caught my eye. The reason behind this eye catching moment is that the game was on sale for 24 cents, Canadian. I had just enough gold points left to nab Robonauts for free, so I decided to make the leap and download the game. I was able to play through the entire game in one afternoon, so now I’m ready to take a look at the game’s joys and cons.

A Mostly Average Experience

Robonauts plays like a 2D shooter, but you have the ability to travel between planets, and to travel 360 degrees around them. This is an interesting take on a shooter, however, Robonauts ends up being a fairly average experience. Part of this may be due to the increasing use of gravity mechanics in indie games, so the novelty has worn off some. Regardless, the action is fast-paced, varied, and fun... most of the time.

You start with your default primary weapon, but can pick up new ones with limited ammo. None of the other primary weapons really stand out, and all primary weapons lack a feeling of power behind them. There is also a collection of secondary weapons to use, which consist of a collection of grenades and rockets. These weapons feel great to use and can be useful to clear out hordes of enemies. Both types of power-ups drop when you defeat enemies. Your shots are actually automatically aimed at enemies, which mostly works fine; however, sometimes you may want to shoot a different enemy and the game targets another one that isn’t an immediate threat. This can certainly lead to a few frustrating moments. Your character’s movement itself can feel a little stiff at times, but you can easily adjust to this; I was still left wishing the developer had tweaked the movement just a little bit more.

Maybe one of the more frustrating parts of the game is that the enemy sometimes overwhelms you. I played through the game on the casual difficulty and experienced these frustrating, overwhelming moments a few times. Luckily, there is enough variety in gameplay to keep you interested. Other than eliminating enemies, some of the other things you will be tasked with completed are finding and destroying enemy nests, navigating a laser maze, and safely escorting a repair robot around the map so it can do its job.

Robonauts does do a good job of introducing you to the game and its mechanics, which is one of the better aspects of the game. However, the game reaches a plateau and then just ends almost suddenly. This isn’t helped by a story twist that can be seen from a mile away. I don’t consider these elements necessarily bad, however, as I’ve touted many times, the game has an average feel throughout.

Robonauts Has Replay Value

One thing that I often praise in games is their ability to keep a gamer coming back, and Robonauts achieves this in a few different ways. The most obvious way that developers can increase replay value is by offering gamers the ability to earn achievements. And there is a decent list of achievements to grab here. The game also records how fast you beat a level, and your high score for the level, so you can compete to lower your time, or increase your score. There are two difficulty options (I played on the casual difficulty) to choose, so if you want to increase the challenge, you can play the game again on the hard setting. Lastly, Robonauts offers co-operative and competitive multiplayer modes, so you can always grab a friend and play through the game together.

Conclusion

Robonauts is a fine game. It isn’t one of the better Switch titles I’ve experienced, although the action can be quite good at times. The game has a decent presentation, which includes a great opening animation, however the graphics and soundtrack didn’t compel me enough to rate them this time. One of my least favorite things about the game is that it builds to its climax rather quickly, and just as new ideas are being explored. I normally don’t criticize a game’s length, but considering the first two levels play like a tutorial, I was left wanting a little more from the game. I probably won’t come back to the game, unless I can convince a friend to try out the multiplayer options.

Final Score: +1

No comments