Technofear: a land of steel inhabited by creatures of steel - living ball bearings to be precise. Every ball living in Technofear is happy, with everything a ball bearing could ever want. Rolling around their metallic land they live a full and hassle-free life, in fact the only thing that could ever endanger their existence resides in the Metaplanes: an evil and twisted land surrounding Technofear. So, smart bearings stay in their homestead and never stray beyond the city limits.
This game concerns a large family of bearings who live in a cosy semi-detached in Technofear. Mummy and Daddy bearing, Bobby (the oldest of the kids), Bertie, Barnaby, Bartholomew and Billy all live together in perfect harmony. Well, they did - until now...
It all started when Cousin Ozzy came to stay. Ozzy tried to make amends for his past misdemeanours by volunteering to take the younger bearings for a roll, Mummy agreed to this, thinking that Ozzy had become a responsible and mature spheroid. Imagine her surprise when a few hours later a worried Police Bearing dropped by to tell her that her youngsters and cousin had strayed out of Technofear jurisdiction... and hadn't come back! Mummy was distraught, so she called upon eldest son - Bobby - for help. Bobby thought for a few seconds, then volunteered to enter the Metaplanes and find them.
Bobby Bearing is a flick-screen, 3D isometric perspective arcade adventure in which you take on the role of young Bobby on his quest to save his younger brothers (and Ozzy) from the horrors of the Metaplanes. Since you have no idea where your idiot cousin has taken your brothers, you must scour the landscape in an attempt to find them.
Once you have found one of your brothers you must push him to safety, all the way back to the exit to Technofear. However, the exit to Technofear can only be kept open for a limited period of time, so if your brothers aren't rescued before the gate closes, you will remain in the Metaplanes forever!
The land of the Metaplanes is composed of geometric shapes and platforms which are connected by thin catwalks and runways. Evil bearings inhabit certain locations and are eager to dispose of any bearing that happens to stray into their territory. On meeting an evil bearing, Bobby is chased and bumped until he is stunned - whereupon control is temporarily lost and the time limit, shown at the bottom of the screen, counts down very quickly for a few seconds.
Evil bearings aren't the only hazards Bobby will encounter during his travels - the landscape also poses many problems. Some locations feature huge cubes suspended in the air, waiting to squash any unsuspecting bearing that rolls underneath them. In other areas there are impassable blocks which can only be moved by activating switches situated elsewhere on the landscape. And then there are the air ducts which blast Bobby into the air when he travels over them. All these problems - and more - will have to be overcome if Bobby is to find and rescue his brothers.
Although Bobby Bearing is superficially similar to Spindizzy, there are many differences between the two, Spindizzy is primarily a puzzle solving game, whereas Bobby Bearing is more of an exploration and rescue mission with a few puzzles thrown in for good measure. The different bearings all have their own character and make the game all the more enjoyable to play.
Bobby looks so cute as he rolls over the landscape with an inane grin spread across his face, and the evil bearings smile maliciously as they bump poor Bobby senseless. Though lacking in variety, Bobby Bearing is a highly addictive and very playable game which shouldn't be missed.
Enter Bobby Bearing, the cutest character yet seen on the Commodore 64. This little metallic sphere generates a wonderful personality as he rolls around the Metaplanes in search of his lost brothers. Bobby's animation is brilliant - just watch when he gets squashed or stunned. The way the landscape works is amazing, you really feel the uneven surfaces as Bobby rolls over them and the inertia is just right as he beetles through the many weird and wonderful screens. Though the graphics consist of only two colours, they are really stunning and work really well.
The soundtrack is pretty neat too, a little similar to Thing On A Spring's, but it adds atmosphere. The game is difficult, but deserves every bit of perseverance devoted to it, if you want something totally addictive and amazingly playable, go out and get this.
I didn't think much of Bobby Bearing to begin with, it all appeared rather dull, what with scooting around plain areas with little to do. However, after trundling around for a while I discovered that there is a great deal to do. Packed full of humour and cute touches, Bobby Bearing now appeals to me immensely. It's a great game which I heartily recommend to anyone who enjoys this type of game.
Good on-screen presentation and a keyboard or joystick option.
Beautifully drawn but lacking in colour.
No spot FX but a jolly tune plays throughout.
Instantly appealing but occasionally frustrating.
Perseverance proves highly rewarding.
Value For Money 91%
Lots of challenge for your money.
An exceptionally cute and playable exploration game.