Friday, March 09, 2012

Destroy and terrorize the 50s in Attack Of the 50ft Robot – a great free game from DigiPen

Destroy and terrorize the 50s in Attack Of the 50ft Robot – a great free game from DigiPen:
Attack Robot Screen 4Attack Robot Screen 5
Attack of the 50ft Robot is a great game from the folks at DigiPen. The game consists of taking control of a giant robot in a kitsch 50s B-movie and trying to destroy absolutely everything. Despite its simple premise, this game is a ton of fun and is absolutely perfect for anyone seeking a casual gaming experience with some oomph to it.
Look out! A giant, 50 foot tall robot is destroying the town! That’s what you’d be saying if you weren’t in control of that robot. Since you are, however, feel free to visit your local pet store, get a white fuzzy cat, and take it home for some serious evil petting. The folks at DigiPen (a digital university) have brought us another winner. Attack of the 50ft Robot immerses you into the realm of 50s B Movie action from the very first loading screen. The graphics, music, and game play are all top notch, and even more impressive when you consider the game was created by students. That’s right, students. This game, like all the others at, was made by students and posted on the site so anyone can download and play it for free. So, I have to give a big kudos to Mike Zitkevitz and the others who worked on this game.
Now, one might think that the scope of such a simple game would be fairly limited, and in truth, if you don’t enjoy stomping around a 50s black and white town destroying everything and anything, then you probably won’t enjoy this game. However, if that sounds even remotely fun to you, you’ll have an absolute blast with this one, pun intended.
The graphics are superb. The whole thing is in black and white with a few exceptions. The lasers that your robot shoots (yes, Virginia, lasers!) are bright red, and so is the ‘health’ meter on the back of your robot. The red stands out in high contrast to the black and white environments, bad guys, and effects like nuclear explosions. Somehow, though, this high contrast comes off as brilliant, rather than out of place. It gives the whole thing a very light touch of Frank Miller or something. The game screen is also very clean in its interface, with no real HUD to block out the action. You’ll have a red circle on the back of your robot to indicate how much damage it can still take, and in one game mode you’ll have a money ticker in the upper left to show how much damage you have caused to the city. Other than that, there’s no interface to get in the way. One of the most beautiful and wonderful ideas for this game was to add a retro 3D mode, where the graphics are displaced red and blue shades. That’s right, if you have any of those old red and blue 3D glasses you can play this game in retro 3D !
Attack Robot Screen 2
The music is also quite well done, having been taken from some rather famous public domain pieces. The music has been touched up, however, to make it feel more like the 50s horror genre, with vinyl pops and scratches overlaid and mixed in perfectly. At the end of a song, it even skips a few times to simulate reaching the center paper label of a record. These kinds of small touches might seem insignificant on their own but when it’s all put together it comes out as a brilliantly camp and kitschy game, very retro. One might even call the sound track vintage.
Attack Robot Screen 3
The game play itself, is where this one really shines, however. With destruction of anything and everything as your main goal, you’re given a number of different weapons and ways to do this. You have lasers in your head. Your head can be detached and thrown, with lasers still firing, to cause long range havoc and damage. Your fists can pound and punch anything with super hydraulic power, or can even be shot off like rockets to damage far away targets. Your lasers can be over-charged to blow up bigger targets easily, and you also have the ability to ground pound in case you’re surrounded by enemies. Bear in mind, however, this isn’t a gundam you’re running, here. It’s a 50s giant robot, so every thing has a consequence. For example, throwing your head will mean you have no laser ability for a little bit until you can manufacture a new head. Same goes for the fists. If you over charge your laser, it will give a huge cyclopean blast, but it will also short out your head for a few moments. These are things you have to consider as you find yourself surrounded by increasingly more enemies.
I’ve just touched on a few of the great things about this game, but as with any entertainment, the best way to experience it is first hand. So head over to DigiPen and get busy destroying things with Attack of the 50ft Robot!
Get the game here

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