50 Metres (Cobinee) Review | 8 Bit Annual - Everygamegoing

Eight Bit Magazine


50 Metres
By Cobinee
MSX

 
Published in 8 Bit Annual 2019

50 Metres

So just what is the difference between a rip off and an homage anyway?

Plot And Gameplay

Mario is a huge deal in the world of video games. He has spawned many imitators, some of whom have become just as popular as the adventuring plumber himself. Another thing that fans of the Mushroom Kingdom's saviour like to do is take the character and put him into their own games. Nintendo have sent more than a few cease and desist letters over the years with people who use their IP. However, while the character model in 50 Metres is very obviously Mario I don't think Cobinee needs to worry about Nintendo.

First of all they're not calling the protagonist "Mario", nor are they using the typical colours associated with the character. You can see from the screenshots that there is a distinct lack of colours actually. The animations of the main sprite do match Mario almost exactly, though this is where the similarities end. The backgrounds are black and apart from the flames everything else looks like it's a wire-frame game from the late 70's. This could have been released on the Vectrex!

The goal of the game is to simply get from one side of the level to the other, avoiding obstacles and flames along the way. These obstacles will move back and forth in a pattern while the flames will sit in one spot. There are 256 courses to play through, so if you commit to the game you're in it for the long haul! As you move through the level the timer will count up while the distance will go down. When it hits zero you have reached your goal and you will be given an option to replay the level again or move on to the next one.

The character, let's just call him Mario. That makes life easier, can be controlled as you might expect with left and right, and the first button on the controller, or the space bar allowing him to jump. The Mario animation appears to be from Super Mario Bros 3, and everything looks very smooth despite the simplicity of the graphics. I did experience some problems playing on the keyboard, with the space bar not working twice in quick succession some of the time.

Sound effects are what you would expect for a platform game, with a beep for options on the menu screens and a 'boing-type' sound for when you jump. The in game tune is fast paced, which adds a sense of urgency.

Try not to move too fast, however, as the ground in 50 Metres feels a little slippery. Also, unlike the Super Mario Bros series there doesn't appear to be an option to run, so even small gaps will need to be jumped over as opposed to just skimming over the top.

What I Like

50 Metres is a fun, simple game. You go from left to right. Easy!

What I Didn't Like

Even with 256 courses, it's probably a little too easy. This is a pick-up-for-5-minutes-at-a-time type of game with little longevity.

Verdict

There are 256 courses to play through, so if you commit to the game you're in it for the long haul!

Paul Monopoli