Who Is Techno Cop?

Techno Cop is a 1988 game for 8/16-bit home computers published by erstwhile industry stalwarts Gremlin Graphics, which was also ported to MegaDrive in 1990.

This isn’t a review, but here’s a quick bit of context. The game obviously seeks to riff on RoboCop (you’ve heard of him, right?). Gameplay is an interesting 50/50 combination of alternating styles. First, into-the-screen driving, complete with weapons with which to destroy (innocent!) vehicles which slow you down. This part is a bit Chase HQ / RoadBlasters. Cover the requisite distance racing along rural roads and you’ll find yourself suddenly in an urban side-on exploration/shooter platformer, a bit like, er, RoboCop. Perhaps, if RoboCop himself was fleshier with a super-deformed BIG HEAD, fired non-lethal nets as well as bullets (nice touch!) and had a weird, super-smooth, high-jump like something out of Tekken 3.

The game is a solid 7/7.5 out of ten, depending on version. I skimmed through a lot of Let’s Play/straight completion videos on YouTube (thumbs up and much appreciation, all!). The repetitiveness of the background graphics probably lets the game down most of all, esp. on the Amiga and MegaDrive where one would certainly hope for better variety.

While browsing the videos I noticed how inconsistent the character design seemed, which makes sense when you think about it. Above snark aside and unlike swathes of games before and after, neither Techno Cop the game nor Techno Cop the character are a complete rip-off of their reference material, both being more a mish-mash conceptually. Character design-wise, there’s some Miami Vice and maybe even proto-Duke Nukem in there too.

Here’s a slideshow of a few pics from the various versions’ loading and completion screens for comparison. Spoilers! I’ve been lazy and skipped including the cover art though.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

He doesn’t even listen to techno!


One Comment Add yours

  1. Da22 says:

    Looks interesting, although it’s probably like you say a cash in on robcop franchise he’s not really a cyborg. Looks half decent though.

    Liked by 1 person

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