Reviewed in 2011 by Tibe

DOES 'ALIEN' RING A BELL?

by Tibe

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Cyber Lip was one of those games young boys like me were looking pictures in videogames magazines, back in 1990, and on which we used to drool without moderation... consoling ourselves with our poor Amstrad CPC 6128, our weak Genesis or even weaker NES systems. The Neo Geo at these times looked like a wild beast devouring sprites, with the numerous screenshots seen in the press sustaining the legend. Of course, the journalists - just like us - were very impressed with the first titles released on the Neo Geo. The most acclaimed of all has probably beenMagician Lord, the one who has aged the best. Objectively, even then, some of these productions were far from perfect. Cyber Lip was neither the prettiest nor the longest among them, but it still featured an addictive two-players mode, a sustained action and some huge bosses. Enough to have any twelve years-old kid asking for more!

If you liked Contra, Cyber Lip will make you a happy man.
If you liked Contra, Cyber Lip will make you a happy man.

I had the opportunity to play Cyber Lip for the first time in 1991, and I remember that we spend great times on this title with a bunch of friends. The game was awesome, everyone was  impressed with the huge and creepy Bosses, the incredible voices distilled in abundance, and of course the intense and taking action. There was the ability to cling to the ceiling, the various weapons, the different areas... A good friend of mine lent me Cyber Lip for an afternoon: that was largely enough to clear the game three or four times, between a few cups of Tang (a strange brew that existed in the eighties/nineties)! You got it, the game is very very short, and for a good reason: players are granted infinite credits, nevermind the difficulty level. Therefore, I can't see any reason for a bunch of kids not to clear the game within an eyeblink! The best way to appreciate Cyber Lip is to limit yourself with the credits and go for a single-credit play, which is much more challenging... and rewarding when you manage to clear the game.

This Boss is easy to kill, but seeing him is still a little impressive!
This Boss is easy to kill, but seeing him is still a little impressive!

Graphically, it is nice and varied, but far from standing as the most beautiful Neo Geo game, even at the time. The animation is decent, the enemy dies down in a heap of scrap metal and explosions, most of the details look good, there are just our heroes who are a little too stiff... but it's still a Par here. The soundtrack is doing good too, with numerous vocals, and quite catchy melodies. The sound effects, at the time that passed for mundane, sound to beep rather rudimentary today... and of course, much better have been heard since then on the system. It's a "more than average" performance that did Cyber Lip, no more, no less. The weapon system is well thought, with six different shots, the shields, and the ability to switch arms at any time with C, while A is used to shoot, and B to jump. The characters can jump higher (up + B) and also cling to certain elements of the backgrounds. Some parts of the missions are a little more platform-oriented, making the game a little more varied, but most of the time you'll need to snipe vehemently anything that moves! 

The "martian" atmosphere is great, that's one of the game's strengths.
The "martian" atmosphere is great, that's one of the game's strengths.

Bosses are clearly a highlight of our Cyber Lip: finely drawn, big, sometimes even huge, well ... it's a real treat. In this game, you sometimes feel like you're in the Alien movie... At the end of certain stages, two paths are offered at the turn of elevators. Make no mistake in your direction choice... or else, you may have to go through very difficult areas! There's seven missions total, in which infinite credits won't always be useless. The fun is great when you play CL, but it's still a bit steep, the collisions are not very accurate... If it's far from perfect, it was anyhow the only action shooter available on the console, as Metal Slug only came six years later. Like Ninja Combat, Cyber Lip is part of the launch games of the Neo Geo, which had their heyday, but whose realizations are aging and is no longer able to hide defects. The main problem of this one is its short life, a gameplay far from having you get up at night, and a realization just above average. A decent Run'nGun, which still taste good like a cookie made by Grand'Ma, as long as you like them ...


GRAPHICS

74%

Far for being a reference on the system, Cyber Lip was still not bad back in 1990.
ANIMATION 70%
The heroes could have had a smoother way of walking, but for enemies, explosions, scrollings, and bosses, it's just fine.
SOUND 77%
Filled with vocals (which was quite impressive back in these times) and good but discrete musics. Sound effects varies from very good to bad.
REPLAY VALUE 59%
Game is too short, even more with the infinite credits. Even if a 2-P cooperative play is still the kick, we don't come back often to it.
GAMEPLAY 69%
Good ideas, various weapons and a fun gameplay, but too stiff controls and a limited action.

NEOGEOKULT

RATE

68%
Cyber Lip, which was one of the first Neo Geo games, offers good fun, but is a little limited and short.

VALUE FOR MONEY

The price of the Cyber Lip is rising. Today, it's about 90 euros for a copy, in its less rare version. Suffice to say that it doesn't really worth it... unless you are nostalgic or collector, of course!

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