Robots! Have we not dealt with this warlord before?

by Kenny Lindsay

Now and again I like to dust off an oldie for the sheer pleasure of smashing heads without having to learn a new game or figure out a complicated control configuration.

As I rummaged through my collection of games, Metal Arms: Glitch in the System stood out from the others. I had one of those smiles you get when you think of something funny from childhood. Only this game was played just a few years ago, and it still gave me that warm fuzzy feeling.

So in she goes, and I was off to what I thought would be a grand old re-cap of what was one of my favorite games. Wrong! It took about a half hour to realize that I was not capable of playing this game through for a second time. It was almost as disappointing as trying to watch the ‘“A-Team’” or ‘“Knight Rider,’” and then saying, ‘“What the hell was I thinking? I used to love these shows.’” Well, at least they still have that special place deep inside my heart.

I obviously enjoyed the game when it came out, and I figured a little memory re-boot was in order so that I could write about it. Glitch in the System takes place on what used to be a peaceful planet called Iron Star. It had once been run by hard-working and self-maintaining little robots whose only goal was to lead a long, fruitful robot life. And then of course we have the super genius doctor robot who wants to make the ultimate, Frankenstein-like, super-duper working machine. This surprisingly goes terribly wrong and the end result is the creation of a homicidal veteran warlord named General Corrosive, whose only goal is destruction and chaos.

After Planet Iron Star has been overrun by the evil general and his no-good doin’ druids, it’s up to Glitch (your character) to team up with the rebels and fight fire with fire. Metal Arms starts you out running around with two grunts named Screwed and Hosed whose names become their reality about 10 minutes into the game. Now you’re on your own and it’s up to you to save the universe’… you get the picture.

The controls are extremely easy to learn along with the simple puzzles and combat. Although certain enemies are a little harder to take down, the learning curve on this game is pretty high. There are a number of weapons to be found throughout the adventure, all of which are capable of being upgraded. Two of my favorites are the ripper and tether weapons. The ripper spits out circular saw blades that when aimed in the right spot, can sever an enemy’s limb, making an all-out, hand-to-hand beat-down mildly irresistible. The tether is another unique little knick-knack that enables you to control your foe from a certain distance. It’s a blast being able to get ahold of one of the bigger tin cans and make mincemeat out of the bad guys.

The graphics and sound are admirable for a game that came out four years ago. The scenery is put together well with ambient and interstellar effects. The acoustics add a nice touch, placing you inside a robotic world with sounds similar to pots and pans clamoring together. This also backs up the humorous storyline and enhances the comical value of the game. The whole upside has almost a cartoonish feel to it, accompanied by a badass attitude.

The first time through this game is very entertaining, unfortunately the replay value sucks a sweaty sock. One of the most frustrating challenges is trying to find these damn computer chips that open doors so that you can move on. There is nothing worse than having to backtrack over an area that you barely made it through in the first place.

Glitch offers a mild challenge to a wide variety of players and lays down a youthful and obnoxious feel to a decent all-around title. For a couple bucks, a used version buys a jolly good, metal-crunching fiasco.

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