If you’ve enjoyed your life as a common garden bumble bee in Antics (or not) it is now time to move on, or in this case roll on, as trundling into the No.#46 slot of the Your Sinclair Top 100 is Bobby Bearing from software publishing house The Edge.
Bobby Bearing was released back in 1986, created by Robert and Trevor Figgins whose only other game on the ZX Spectrum was Fig Chess, which was a shame really as Bobby Bearing showed that these two gentlemen had a fair whack of talent.
To be glib about the game you could say you just need to rescue your cousins from the evil bearings and get out. However that really, really doesn’t sell this rather massive, 3D isometric maze type game, in which you guide Bobby across numerous levels, lifts, ramps and air jets, moving him past evil bearings who aim for you as you seek out your unconscious cousins stranded within the maze. Then when you’ve found your dormant cousins you then need to roll them back out, not only dealing with the same pitfalls as before but also remembering that Newton’s Laws also apply in this world.
Gamers of old may take one look at Bobby Bearing and think Gyroscope or Marble Madness. Well I’ll calm those nerves now. This game is nothing like those two – for a start it’s a great game and very enjoyable to play, not only this the controls are far superior; you feel like you actually have some real control over the hero of the game. However there is a negative, as on occasion my lowly Bobby would get trapped and I couldn’t for the life of me get him out; here you waited for the time to tick down or you had to reset the machine.
If however you can put the minor issue of occasionally being trapped in the maze, Bobby Bearing is a fantastic game to sit down and play. I would however recommend that all newcomers seek a map as this game is rather massive.