I had a fascination with robots when I was a kid. I lumped robot companions in with flying cars and bubble cities as inevitabilities of my adult life. They were not ifs, they were whens. Sadly I’m still waiting on my robot butler, but this week I thought I’d take a look at my top five robot obsessions from childhood. That’s not to say that these are the five coolest robots, just the five that I was particularly obsessed with.
1. R.O.B. – The day I got my Nintendo Entertainment System is etched in stone as one of the happiest days of my life. It was at my seventh birthday party, and it was so unexpected. I never thought I’d get a NES. This wasn’t just any NES, though – it was the NES Deluxe Set, which included a Zapper gun for Duck Hunt and R.O.B., the Robotic Operating Buddy.
The pack-in game was Gyromite, one of only a handful of games developed to take advantage of R.O.B.’s amazing futuristic capabilities. In addition to controlling the on-screen character yourself, you had to control a real life slow robot as he placed gyros into spinners and then onto plates that then pressed a button on the second controller to activate gates so that your on-screen character could pass through them. In other words, instead of pressing a button on the second controller yourself, you had to walk a robot through three slow-paced actions to press that button. Needless to say, R.O.B. was quickly retired from gaming duty and found a fulfilling retirement as a space base/other-dimensional enemy in several G.I. Joe scenarios. Regardless of his value as a gaming companion he had a great look to him, one that screamed “FUTURE”.
Also, I never beat Gyromite. How does it end?