MicroBot Review
Xbox 360 | PS3
MicroBot Box Art
System: Xbox 360, PS3
Dev: EA/Naked Sky Entertainment
Pub: Electronic Arts
Release: December 29, 2010
Players: 1-2
Screen Resolution: 720p

The combat sometimes requires a little strategy, too. Aside from your typical assortment of direct damage weapons, you're given auxiliary items, like a rocket booster for quick escape from viral swarms, or the cellular-level equivalent of a nuke. You can also gain new attachments by picking up data pads, which unlock the ability to use such items. Finally, gathering atoms dropped by enemies or in scattered incubation sacs allow you to upgrade your various parts at upgrade terminals, allowing you to pick and choose combinations of offensive, defensive, and support capabilities to your specifications.

MicroBot Screenshot

If there's one disappointment in MicroBot (aside from the name), it's that it doesn't always do enough with its source material. It's slightly problematic, if not a huge deal, that the story is non-existent outside of press releases (at least insofar as you never really know where you are and what anything around you is), and although you're traveling through the human body, rarely do you come across anything that feels like a setpiece—like having to navigate through the heart, as in Fantastic Voyage, or even just shaking up the level design so that you're not just floating through body-themed passages killing any virus or infected cell you come across. Ideas like companion white blood cells, which will attack you if you attack but will become allies if they see you killing bacteria, are underused, though at least you can play co-op with a buddy, should you desire.

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But the most disappointing aspect of a game like MicroBot is the way that it glosses over its scientific essence. While it's clear that education is not a key factor in an arcade shooter, it would have been really cool if they had included an optional "enhanced" mode, like on a blu-ray that pointed out various information about the microbiology that populates the game. Endless Ocean did that, and was a much better game for it, and it's a shame not to capitalize on that scientific knowledge—especially for those of us who didn't major in Biology.

On the other hand, if you just want a game that lets you blast eukaryotes, MicroBot has you covered.

By Steve Haske
CCC Freelance Writer

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
4.0
Graphics
MicroBot's graphics aren't jaw-dropping, but for a downloadable title, it has some pretty neat effects.
3.3
Control
Having to navigate against bodily currents is sometimes tricky, though the physics effects are pretty impressive. Ease of use can be negotiable.
4.0
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
Sound effects are appropriately toned. The ambient, Mass Effect-esque soundtrack can be hypnotic.
3.8
Play Value
MicroBot's baseline gameplay isn't revolutionary, but for an arcade shooter, it's not bad. Might be worth a trip just for the aesthetics, depending on how much like the genre.
3.7
Overall Rating - Good
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • Work your way through the bones, lungs, bloodstream, and brain of the human body in this unique arcade shooter.
  • Two-player co-op.
  • Challenge mode.

  • Screenshots / Images
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