#156 – Cyber Ball

Cyberball

 

          Soltar is at the 50 yard line, Cromtor’s coming like a freight train. Who’s going to keep that hot potato?!

 

Cyberball-U-5B-5D-0

 

                                                                                                            Cyber Dump

 

PLAYERS: 1-2 simultaneous

PUBLISHER: Jaleco

DEVELOPER: Tengen

GENRE: Sports

RELEASE DATE: 1992

 

If there’s any sport in this world that confuses me regarding its appeal, curling would be first, then football. As Orson Scott Card nimbly put it, “It’s like a ballet where slugs bash into each other.” I’m not sure he said the “ballet” part, but the point remains the same. Throwing robots into the pigskin mix, however, sounds like a recipe for success. It kinda, sorta worked for Base Wars, did it not? Well, color me metallic grey because it sure doesn’t work here. Imagine if 10-Yard Fight, that awful first-gen football game, had robots, and then imagine if they tried to give 10-Yard Fight a modicum of strategy. I know, it’s confusing, but that’s exactly what Cyber Ball tries to do: add a fantastical element to the lumbering game of football, then pretend like it’s a real football game by giving you play options. Huh? Pick your poison, Cyber Ball. You should either enhance football with your teams of cybernetic organisms – like how in Base Wars, when two members of the opposing team collide, they begin to fight until one of them explodes – or just throw in some huge dudes and make it a typical football sim. The latter isn’t hard, really. Madden’s been doing it for twenty-plus years and he seems to make a comfortable living.

 

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