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Buzz! Junior: RoboJam review

Decent entertainment for the youngest possible players

For

  • Easy for all to play
  • 24 games
  • Novel controllers

Against

  • Too simple for most
  • Robots not as funny as monkeys
  • Not different enough

Like its predecessor Buzz Junior: Jungle Party, Publisher Sony's Buzz! Junior: RoboJam is a kiddie-focused collection of two dozen minigames, tied together with a loose story - in this case, some sort of "basic training meets a juvenile detention center"-style competition. Like its predecessor, it's played by one-to-four players using the Buzz! controllers - meaty pads with four rectangular buttons and one gigantic red "buzzer" which lights up but doesn't actually make a buzzing noise. Or any other sound, for that matter. And like its predecessor, Buzz! Junior: RoboJam is great for the little ones, but will have questionable appeal to anyone over the age of ten.

It's not that the mini-games aren't fun. They're fine, and you could argue they're more consistently good than the ones in Jungle Party. But they're hellishly simplistic, and the controllers' lack of aD-pad or analogsticksometimes leads to odd control schemes.

For instance, you'd think that giving each robot a rocket launcher and telling them to blow each other up would be bombastic mayhem. But with no directional control, you can't actually move your robot anywhere or tell them were to shoot- instead, they stand in place, rotating. You press the buzzer once to make them stop turning (which determines the direction in which they'll shoot)and again to choose the distance of your shot.Sure, it still works, but it's far from ideal.

Another weakness, at least in our eyes, is that robots aren't as funny as monkeys. Thus, it's not as darkly humorousto see them electrocuted, smashed flat by a giant piston, or charred black by an exploding bomb. Call us sadistic, but that was the only real reason we recommended Jungle Party to grown-up gamers, and it's not recreated here.

All told, kids who likedBuzz! Junior: Jungle Partywill surely like this as well because it's almost the same game in a different wrapper. But older gamers will most likley want to let this one pass.

More Info

GenreFamily
DescriptionUnlike other Buzz Jr. titles, Robo Jam isn't a trivia game, but rather a collection of simple minigames designed around the Buzz controllers.
Franchise nameBuzz!
UK franchise nameBuzz!
PlatformPS2
US censor ratingEveryone
UK censor rating
Release date:11 March 2008 (US), (UK)
Available platforms:PS2
Genre:Family
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