"THE QUEST FOR R.O.B."
Saturday, December 18, 1993, 9:53 AM
Kevin, Lana, Mike, Stacey, and Rick had decided to spend the weekend at Kevin's house on Earth. Currently, they were in the living room. Kevin had hooked up his Nintendo to the TV set, and he and Mike were sitting on the floor in front of it, engaged in a fierce game of Contra. Lana, Stacey, and Rick sat behind them and watched with great interest. Kevin lost his last life and threw down his NES Advantage. Mike stood up and raised his arms in the air. "Oh, yeah! Me and my U-Force are triumphant!" "Congratuations, Mike." Kevin turned off the Power button on his NES and stood up. "Man, playing NES games all morning has got me really nostalgic." "Like, me, too!" Stacey agreed, standing up. "Say, I got an idea." Kevin said. "Why don't we go hunt down old NES games and accessories?" Rick stood up. "Hey, yeah! Relive the memories!" Lana stood up also. "Great idea, Kevin!" "Best place to look is the flea market." Mike said.
"So, how'd we do?" Lana asked, since she wasn't very familiar with what was considered classic and what wasn't. "Great!" Kevin said with a smile. "We've got Kung Fu, Mario Bros., Duck Hunt, Excite Bike, - " "Classics, right?" Lana asked. Kevin nodded. "Right!" Lana smiled. "Cool!" "There's one more guy selling stuff here. Let's see what he's got." Mike said. The group came to a table. There was a guy in his twenties sitting behind it. "Hello." the guy said. "Looking for anything in particular?" "You got anything for the Nintendo Entertainment System?" Kevin asked. "Oh, yeah, definitely!" He smiled. "I'm getting rid of all of it! Gonna get me a Super NES!" "Your choice, man." Mike said. "Whoa, the gray Zapper!" Stacey said. She snatched it up with her right hand. "I don't have one of these! I'll take it!" "Two bucks." the guy said. Stacey handed him the money. The guy gave her a bag to carry the Zapper in. Mike eyed an item on the table. "The Power Glove." The others looked at it. Mike picked up the Power Glove and put it on his right hand. "Does it work?" "I can hook it up to my NES, and you can try it out." the guy said. Mike nodded. "Yeah, thanks." The guy disconnected the standard controller and plugged the Power Glove's cable into Port # 1. He took out the Tengen Tetris cart and put it down on the table. Kevin snatched it up. "I'll take this." "One buck." Kevin payed him. The guy gave him a bag. The guy then put in the Mike Tyson's Punch-Out cart and pressed the Power button on the control deck. He then configured the Power Glove. "All set up. Go for it." Mike started the game. He went into Round 1 of the first match. He was up against Glass Joe. Using his arm as if he were really beating the crap out of someone, he watched as Little Mac defeated his opponent on screen. He TKOed Glass Joe in one round. Mike turned around and faced the others. They were all looking at him. Mike placed his right hand on his shirt. "Geez." Stacey said in wonder. "I love the Power Glove." Mike shook his head. "It's so bad." Mike bought the Power Glove and placed it in the bag he was given. Lana looked back at the table. Her eyes scanned it. She came across a R.O.B. "It's Him!!!" Lana screamed in surprise. She fell to her knees on the floor. They all looked at her. "Lana, are you okay?" Kevin asked with concern. Lana slowly raised her head and gazed upon R.O.B. Kevin smiled. "Hey, it's R.O.B.! The Robotic Operating Buddy!" "Sweet R.O.B." Lana said in an awestruck tone of voice. "Sacred R.O.B." "Lana, have you, like, blown an organic circuit?" Stacey asked. Kevin, Mike, and Rick looked at Stacey strangely. "What's with her?" the guy behind the table asked. "Is she all right?" "I dunno." Kevin said truthfully. He walked over to the Princess. "Lana, are you all right?" "Legendary R.O.B.," Lana continued, not hearing him, "father of all that we are." "All right, fess up." Mike said. "Which one of you put the pot leaves in her chicken salad?" Lana slowly got to her feet. "R.O.B. Myth. R.O.B. Legend. R.O.B. the Beloved. R.O.B." "She apparently loves this R.O.B." the guy observed. "I'll buy him." Kevin said, getting out his wallet. In a swift motion, Lana grabbed Kevin by the shirt. "R.O.B. belongs to nobody!" "Chill, Lana! It's just an NES accessory." Kevin said. He looked at the guy. "How much?" "Three bucks." Kevin gave him the money, then faced Lana. "He's ours, Lana. You can take him home now." Lana considered his words for a moment, then looked at the guy. He smiled and nodded. Lana looked at Kevin again and let go of his shirt. She then turned and faced the table. She slowly, carefully reached out and picked up the Robotic Operating Buddy. "Would you like a bag for that?" the guy asked. Lana pressed R.O.B. to her chest. "I guess not." The guy picked up two boxes. "I've got Gyromite and Stack Up. He placed them in R.O.B.'s box. "All the instruction manuals and blocks are in there. Happy Robbing!" Kevin took the box. "Thanks. C'mon, let's go home." Kevin walked away, with Mike, Rick, and Stacey following him, and Lana at the rear, holding R.O.B. at her bossom.
They came in through the front door of Kevin's house. Cheryl was standing there. Kevin's mom smiled. "How'd the game hunt go?" "Totally terrific!" Stacey said. Cheryl watched as Lana walked past her, holding R.O.B. to her breasts. "That's...good." Cheryl said. She closed the door. Kevin put in Kung-Fu and tried it out with a standard NES controller. Then Mike played Excite Bike with his Power Glove. Stacey then played Duck Hunt with her gray Zapper. Finally, Kevin and Mike went through a fierce game of Mario Bros. "I win this time, Mike!" Kevin said. Mike shook his hand. Kevin, Mike, Stacey, and Rick looked at Lana, who had been watching them play this whole time, still holding R.O.B. "Hey, let's try him out!" Rick said. Kevin got up and walked over to Lana. He reached out. Lana turned away from him. "Lana, give me R.O.B." Kevin said. "Lana? Lana! Give me R.O.B., damn it!" Lana refused to hand Him over. "You leave me no choice." Kevin tickled Lana's waist. Lana broke into laughter. Kevin grabbed R.O.B. and walked back over to his NES. Kevin checked the R.O.B. instruction manual. He put in four AA batteries. "How dare you defile R.O.B.?!" Lana yelled angrily, lunging forward. Stacey ran over and blocked her. Kevin read R.O.B.'s instruction manual, then flipped the ON / OFF switch. R.O.B. moved, opening and closing his hands. Then he stopped, with his arms open and outward. Since the living room television set had a 25-inch screen, Kevin placed R.O.B. three feet away. After reading the Gyromite game manual, Kevin inserted a size D battery into the gyro spinner and placed the spinner into position # 1 on R.O.B. The hands were already attached. Kevin set controller # 2 in the tray, with the A and B buttons in front of the actuators. He then placed the tray into positions 2 and 3 on R.O.B. He set the two gyros in the holder, then placed the holder into positions 4 and 5 on R.O.B. Kevin placed the Gyromite cartridge in the control deck. He pressed the Power button. He pressed Start and selected TEST mode with the Select button on the controller, then pressed the Start button to activate it. The TV screen flashed green, with the word "TEST" appearing on it. Kevin made sure there was no glare reflecting off the TV screen, then adjusted the brightness until R.O.B.'s light blinked with the flashing of the screen. Kevin then selected DIRECT mode by pressing the Select Button, then the Start button to activate it. A box was shown on the TV screen. R.O.B.'s light was solid red. Kevin pressed a few buttons on the controller. The screen displayed the commands, and R.O.B. responded to them. "All right! He works!" Kevin said happily. "He lives!" Lana said, falling to her knees once again. Kevin started to play to game. Lana ran over and picked R.O.B. up off the floor. "Lana!" Kevin yelled in frustration. "You can try him out in a bit. Put him down." "R.O.B. shall not toil for the desires of humans and be thrown into a life of servitude!" Lana walked over to the fireplace and placed R.O.B. on the mantle. "R.O.B. is to be placed on high...and revered." Lana knelt down on the floor and bowed her head. Kevin, Mike, Rick, and Stacey stared at her. "That does it!" Kevin yelled. He and the others walked over to her. Kevin pulled Lana to her feet. "Lana, what's going on, huh? What's so special about R.O.B.? I mean, I know he's the man. But come on! Worship?!" "All right." Lana said. "Sit down." The five of them sat down on the living room floor in a circle. Lana closed her eyes and began to think. "Well?" Rick asked. "Shh, I'm thinking of how best to tell the story."
Lana was silent for two minutes, thinking. Finally, she opened her eyes. "I'm ready to begin." "Finally!" Stacey said. "This is the Legend of R.O.B." Lana began. "On the evening of September 4th, 1984, Professor Hector, the most famous scientist of that time, conceived of the idea of a Super Robot, a robot that could do incredible amounts of work by the standards of the day. Professor Hector nicknamed the robot the Robotic Operating Buddy, or R.O.B. for short." Lana smiled. "Anyway, on that night,...the R.O.B. Project began." Here Lana paused in reverence. "And?" Kevin asked, growing impatient. "Don't rush me!" Lana snapped. "Professor Hector - along with Professor Vector, his slightly-less-famous assistant - worked almost non-stop on R.O.B. during those next few months. Finally, on January 1st, 1985, one hour and a half before sunrise, the two scientists completed R.O.B. They then had a quick breakfast of hash browns and orange juice - " "Will you get to the point?!" Mike yelled. "Shut up!" Lana yelled back at him. Mike shut up. "They then did some final system checks. One hour before sunrise, R.O.B. came online." Lana then paused in reverence again. "So, what happened then?" Rick asked. "Professors Hector and Vector had R.O.B. perform some routine tests, such as stacking blocks. Also, R.O.B. helped them defuse bombs that were in their laboratory and helped Professor Hector with his sleepwalking problems. However, once Professor Hector saw how much strength R.O.B. possessed, he knew He would be a great danger to everyone if anyone ever reprogrammed Him. So, on January 2nd, he sealed R.O.B. up somewhere on his world of Gyromite, much to Professor Vector's objections." "And no one's ever found him?" Kevin asked. Lana shook her head. "Professor Hector has remained silent about this for all these years, and Professor Vector has mysteriously disappeared. But Legend has it that when a person sees an idol of R.O.B., it will lead them to the real R.O.B." "Lana, you found it at a flea market." Kevin said. "It's a Nintendo accessory. There's gotta be millions of R.O.B.s out there!" Lana shook her head. "No, this means something, Kevin! I know it does! I will be able to find R.O.B. and, in doing so, make Videoland a better place for all. And,...I would love for you four to accompany me on my quest." "Quest?" Kevin asked in disbelief. Lana nodded. "The Quest for R.O.B." Mike laughed. "C'mon. Really." Lana looked at him and frowned. Mike stopped laughing. "You're serious." Lana looked at everyone. "So, how about it?" Kevin, Mike, Rick, and Stacey all looked at each other and considered it. "Okay, Lana, if you're serious about going, I'll come with ya." Kevin said. "Like, count me in!" Stacey said with a grin. "Me, too." Rick said. "Same here." Mike said. Lana smiled. Everybody stood up. "So," Kevin asked, "how do we start?"
Lana walked over to her bookshelf in her room and selected a book. She turned and faced the others. "The...Book of R.O.B." she said with reverence. She opened it and slowly turned the pages. "In it lies the Way." Mike took the Book from her and flipped through it. "Lana, this is a collection of maps, tech-specs, and journal entries." Lana frowned. "It is Circuit Scripture." She took the Book from Mike. "Professor Hector published it two days after he sealed R.O.B. Using his instructions, and the R.O.B. idol, we will find R.O.B." "Okay." Rick said, nodding. "What else do we need to do?" "The Path to R.O.B. is not an easy one." Lana said. "We need to take a lot of food and drink. I'll handle that. We also need instruments to figure out our location on the planet." "I'll get some stuff from Dr. Right." Rick said. Lana nodded. "And bring your video camera." "Do you want to take the Warp Wagon?" Kevin asked. Lana shook her head. "No, we go on foot."
One hour later, the five of them met by a round door. "The food's packed." Lana said. "Rick?" "I've gotten tracking devices from Dr. Right, and my video camera has a new tape and fresh batteries." Lana nodded. "I guess we're all set. Roll it." Rick turned on his video camera, removed the lens cap, and recorded Lana and the others. Lana indicated the round door behind her. "This door is a warp zone to Gyromite." She turned and opened the door, revealing a warp behind it. She turned back to face her friends and nodded. "Ready?" The others all nodded. Lana put on her backpack. "Let's go for it." Lana turned and climbed into the warp, following by Kevin, Mike, Stacey, and Rick.
In a glow of golden light, they appeared on top of a slope. Rick focused his camera on Lana. Lana checked her watch. "It is now 3:00 PM on Saturday, December 18th, 1993. Let the Quest for R.O.B. begin!" "So, where to?" Kevin asked. Lana took the Book of R.O.B. out of her backpack and flipped through it. "We are on top of a slope. From here, we must go east, which means going down into that valley below us." she said, pointing below. "Like, did you say valley?" Stacey asked excitedly. She eagerly ran down the slope. "Stacey, it's not - " Kevin called out, then decided to just drop it. Explaining something to Stacey usually doesn't work. They all went down the slope after her. The five of them crossed the valley together. Then they climbed up the other slope. Mike was the first to make it to the top, so he helped the others. "We must continue going east." Lana said.
After an hour of following Lana's directions, the others were getting bored. Stacey let out a yawn. "What? You do not share my enthusiasm in finding R.O.B.?" Lana asked. "No offense, Lana, but we've been walking around for, like, forever!" Stacey said. "When are we gonna find the damn robot?!" Lana abruptly came to a halt, turned, and stared Stacey down. "Do not speak of R.O.B. in such a manner!" "Lana, we're bored." Kevin told her. Lana looked at him, then at the others. "My fellow adventurers, where is your excitement?! Sing with me!" And with that, Lana went on, skipping as she sang a merry little song:
We embark on the Quest for R.O.B. Seeking He who is wise! We search for Him everywhere With carefully-scanning eyes!
Kevin, Mike, Stacey, and Rick all stared at Lana for a moment, then skipped along with her.
We search this gorgeous world On the ground and in the air! We rejoice, because we know Surely R.O.B. is there!
And so, the five adventurers continued on their Quest for R.O.B. Often, Lana would set the Robotic Operating Buddy on the ground so it could guide them. It wasn't much help, though.
Meanwhile, deep within Skull Castle in Megaland, Dr. Wily had been watching the five of them on a monitor. The evil scientist smiled. "With a robot as powerful as that on my side, I can bring Videoland to its knees!" He laughed as every mad scientist does.
The five adventurers stood on a cliff in a mountainous area. "Rejoice, my friends! R.O.B. is nigh!" Lana said grandly. "Huh?" Mike asked. "Near, dork." Kevin said. "Oh." Lana pointed with her left index finger. "Over yonder - in Lookout Mountain!" They looked. The mountain was a good distance away, but easily reachable with Power Pads. Kevin scooped Stacey up in his arms, much to Lana's annoyance. Kevin, Mike, Lana, and Rick all pressed a button on their Power Pads, and they slowly crossed the sky. Finally, they landed on a ledge about half-way up the mountain. "That was scary, Kevy!" Stacey said. "Don't worry. It's all over." Kevin assured her. The two of them kissed on the lips. Lana folded her arms across her chest and waited, not-so-patiently, for them to finish. Finally, Kevin set Stacey down, but their kiss lingered a few seconds more. The five of them then faced the mountain. "How do we get inside?" Mike asked. Lana faced Rick. "Hey, Rick, you think your Super Scope's powerful enough to blast a hole in the rockface?" Rick took his Super Scope off his back and held it in his hands. "We'll see. Stand back, guys!" The others took a few steps back. Rick fired his weapon. The blue laser beam from the Super Scope blasted the rock. Bits and pieces of rock flew everywhere. Lana stepped forward. The hole had revealed a large spacious cavern inside the mountain, and in the cavern stood... "R.O.B.!" Lana yelled happily. She ran into the cavern, and the others followed. The five of them looked up...and up...and up. R.O.B. was thirty feet tall. "Crap." Mike said quietly. "He's huge!" Lana dropped to her knees and bowed down before R.O.B., then slowly lifted her head to cast her gaze upon the Great One. "Lana's gone bye-bye, Kevin." Mike said. Suddenly, there was a loud sound. Lana got to her feet, and she and the other N Team members turned. The entrance Rick had made with his Super Scope had been sealed, and standing in the cavern with them were Dr. Wily and six Robot Masters - Bomb Man, Guts Man, Cuts Man, Elec Man, Ice Man, and Fire Man. "Wily!" Kevin yelled. "What's he doing here?!" Rick asked. "I'm here for that super robot." Dr. Wily said. The Robot Masters pointed their weapons at the N Team members. Dr. Wily laughed. "With it I will be able to take over Videoland." The Robot Masters approached, and the N Team members reached for their weapons.
TO BE CONTINUED...