Once upon a time, Capcom introduced a game called “Spyborgs” to the world, which was to be developed by Bionic Games. They were short on details, but from the look of things, it was going to be a game with a kiddy look, sort of a Saturday morning cartoon thing. The Internet, unfriendly beast that it is, was not kind, and Spyborgs disappeared from the minds of gamers for a time. It was then reintroduced, right around the time everyone started to wonder just where the game had gone, sporting a brand new look and direction. If you’re one of those folks that was turned off by the original design, make sure you pay attention here, because all traces of that game, except for the name itself, have been wiped away.
Spyborgs is a brawler with two-player co-op and plenty of enemies to take down. It’s also not an easy game by any means. There is a block button, and if you do not use it you will lose. It’s as simple as that. There are three different characters, each in their own class of weaponry. Clandestine is the female ninja that can bounce around the screen much quicker than her male teammates, Bouncer is the large robot that can do some serious damage, but at a slower pace, and Stinger is the male with the gun for an arm; he’s faster than Bouncer and with a bit more firepower than Clandestine from what I witnessed, so he’s a good balance pick among the three choices.
Even if you do not have someone to play with, two of the three characters will be on screen. If you are in single, you can jump between the two characters, so you will get a chance to use all three extensively, especially since the game allows you to choose your team again often. Stringing together attacks into combos with any of the characters is the most efficient way to take down enemies, as you can see in this video:
You may have also noticed the orange orbs collected by Clandestine in that video. Those go towards a meter–the pulsating orange one, for those of you watching–which when full allows you to unleash a team attack. These attacks are very powerful, and are quick-time event based, but as with most QTE that use motion, they work effectively. They can (and should) be used against bosses as well, given how powerful they are. In co-op you must both activate the attack at the same time by holding down block while facing the enemy, and then moving the Wii Remote in a downward motion. While the motions worked, the biggest hurdle I faced doing this was just getting both of us to do it at the same time. It might also be easier to coordinate verbally when there isn’t a Tatsunoko vs. Capcom tournament going on five feet behind you as well though (no hard feelings Tatsunoko vs. Capcom!)
While I did not get to witness any of this during the demo, there are upgrades you can buy for your attacks by collecting “crimson spark”. There is also an achievement system built into the game that allows you to unlock concept art and additional challenges for the game. I’m glad companies are starting to put achievements into their Nintendo titles, even without a unified system like gamerscore or trophies in place.
Outside of the challenging gameplay, the other thing that impressed me the most were the graphics. They have a stylized yet realistic look to them, and the thing that stuck out to me was how impressive some of the effects were. Check out the explosions and fire in the screens included in this preview to see what I mean; Bionic Games knows how to squeeze some life out of the Wii’s graphical abilities, and it shows when you see Spyborgs in motion. We’ll have more info for you on this game as it releases, but you can look forward to a release date of September 29th of this year for now.