rcade Game Review : I, Robot (Atari, 1983)

I, Robot
Published by : Atari (1983)
Re-releases : None at present
I, Robot is a really neat early use of 3D in gaming. I’m surprised that it is not more well known, as it was running a 3D polygonal engine in 1983 that was comparable to that of PC games from nearly a decade later. Despite the impressive visual effects, it was probably too complex and advanced for an arcade public that was still having it’s mind blown by Pac-Man at the time.

Anyway, the game doesn’t have much to do with either the Isaac Asimov story or the atrocious Will Smith movie. You’re a robot taking on some creepy all-seeing eye, which opens and closes every few seconds. You have to truck around the playfield and turn all red tiles to blue by touching them. However, you have to do a lot of jumping to get between tiles, and if you are in mid-air when the Evil Eye fully opens it blasts you to smithereens. There’s also robotic birds that fly by at random intervals who will knock you out of the air, but you have a laser with which you can blast them. At first the Eye doesn’t put up much resistance to your intrusion, but as you progress in the game he’ll start lobbing deadly soccer balls and sending sawblades after you. You also face more environmental challenges such as tubes that move up and down, and walls that you have to blast to uncover red tiles (usually while dodging projectiles).

Being a 3D game, you are able to change the camera angle between a few different views. You actually get more points for having the camera closer to the playfield, as it decreases visibility and makes the game tougher. In a neat twist, one of the enemies in later levels actually attacks YOU (rather than your onscreen avatar) via the camera; you have to change camera angles to avoid being killed.

Not only is the game fun to play, and very visually impressive for the time period, it’s one of those throwback games that you’ll play over and over just to see what happens next. An arcade obscurity that is definitely worth investigating, be sure to give this one a look.

How Video Games Can Help Deal with Real-Life Problems

For the last 10-15 years, video games have been extremely popular amongst all age groups. This is because everyone finds them extremely entertaining. Games are a great way to spend your time if you’re bored, or just looking for something fun to do.
However, some people believe that gamers are taking their gaming lives way too far, in the fact that they play for hours at end. It’s true that a lot of gamers do play the computer or console game systems quite frequently and extensively, however, there are deeper reasons for why some of these people play video games.

In my life, video games serve the purpose to me of a safe haven. Be it healthy or not, games help me to deal with my problems that I face in real life.

My parental divorce, for example. This was a horrible experience for me to face at such a young age. While playing a game that allowed me to exert my full attention and be in a perfect world where I had control, I felt much better.

Games serve a much deeper purpose than people are interested in believing. A few of my friends have been in and out of hard relationships, and playing games in a virtual world can help these people to deal with their relationship-based pain, as well as get over their problems.

Games where people are allowed to create and run their own virtual world give people without control a sense of control over their lives. There are much worse things people could be doing to control their lives than to play video games. Cutting is another form of controlling one’s life; which sounds better and more effective to you?

If you’ve ever been in a relationship or faced hardship in your life, you know how painful these events can be. You know that these events are extremely hard to control and you’re under intense emotions because you can’t control the rest of the world. If video games can help control these emotions, then why criticize video games?

I like my video games because they temporarily allow me to escape reality; they allow me to live a second life in a perfect world where I have control. Anyone who looks at video games in a negative way really needs to see video games from the perspective of a true gamer, who has experienced hardship and made it through with the use of video games.