nintendo ROB robot

Nintendo NES R.O.B. Robotic Operating Buddy

nintendo ROB robot

Nintendo NES ROB Robotic Operating Buddy

This was my R.O.B. Robotic Operating Buddy from the first North American Nintendo Entertainment System Deluxe Set, which included the Gyromite and Duck Hunt game cartridges. This is the video game system that single-handedly rescued the home video game industry from complete stagnation and alarming disinterest from the American consumer. One of its key marketing tools was the R.O.B. Robotic Operating Buddy, one of the weirdest and most clever game controllers ever designed. Known as “Family Computer Robot” in Japan, R.O.B. was controlled remotely via strobe-like flashing signals on your TV, which were triggered by pressing a combination of buttons on your NES control pad. These flashing signals (which seem suspiciously seizure-inducing) make R.O.B. move a gyroscope to the “charging station”, which makes it spin super fast. R.O.B. then picks up and drops the gyro onto a platform that holds the second game pad, triggering either the A or B button. It is a strange and fun way to play video games, but, sadly, Nintendo developed only two games for poor R.O.B. He was quickly discontinued, but persists as a recognizable mascot of retro video games and cult Nintendo fans. I got this system on Christmas Day, 1985. He has been sitting on a shelf since 1986. Nintendo NES Rob the robotSadly, I misplaced his trigger platform, which holds the game pad. Otherwise, he seems to still be in good working condition. I put batteries in him and when powered on, he turns to the right and then returns back to center, ready to accept commands. The gyro spinner works perfectly, spinning the gyroscopes ridiculously fast. That is the extent of my testing, as I don’t have either of the games that activate him, but he was working perfectly when he became a display piece. R.O.B. is still in good cosmetic condition, showing only minor wear. He sold and was shipped to Australia, but you can find plenty of ROB’s below, including his original game cartridges and even some spare parts you probably lost sometime in the last 25 years (like me!).

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