Mixed or average reviews - based on 37 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 37
  2. Negative: 2 out of 37
Buy On
  1. AceGamez
    Spectrobes works perfectly for what it is, tapping into that primal collecting gene we all share at some point in our lives. Cliché-filled story and characters aside, the kids this one is made for will eat it up like free ice cream at a birthday party and come back for seconds with a clean plate.
  2. Making the fullest use of the DS hardware, Spectrobes does almost everything you could want, but it's marred by niggling flaws.
  3. From the prospecting to fighting, to the huge game world begging for exploration, tons of secrets and hidden features, Spectrobes offers an incredible amount of gameplay.
  4. 75
    For players willing to fully invest, Spectrobes can prove to be as interesting and fulfilling as a Seaman/Pokémon hybrid. If the thought of excavating and incubating ancient creatures doesn't thrill you, though, you should probably consider collecting monsters that are a bit easier to catch.
  5. 75
    Spectrobes is a great beginning for Disney Interactive's new IP - it's clear this is only the tip of the iceberg for the franchise. Spectrobes comes highly recommended.
  6. 70
    Spectrobes is way more game than is really necessary. Jupiter has some great concepts and tried to jam them all into one game.
  7. There’s no denying the strong Pokemon influence, but it fails to be as engaging, intuitive, or fun as Nintendo’s blockbuster series. With an awkward battle system, and tedious spectrobe collection this is one fossil that’s best left buried unless you’re a Poke-maniac looking for the next fix.
  8. 62
    So Disney published an RPG with some innovative mini-games utilizing the DS to its full extent. Unfortunately, the rest of the game was garbage.
  9. Spectrobes is a suicidal endeavour by Disney, a fool-hardy exercise in boardroom cynicism resulting in little more than a way below par, under-funded attempt to cash in on Pokémon’s “Gotta catch ‘em all” legacy. Of what little enjoyment there is still left inside the DS cartridge, it’s left for the obsessive gamers who can stand the constant fruitless searching, endless digging, piss-poor combat, the rarity of finding something new, the barely existent storyline and even the feeble character designs.
  10. With a host of smart ideas and plenty of depth to the game's multitude of features, it's disappointing that the charge of the main game fails to provide any real engagement and makes all of the good work largely redundant.
  11. Disney has clearly tried to make a vastly more flexible and more varied game to Pokémon but, in doing so, has broken that game's more elegant flow and focus of ideas.
  12. A decent enough kid's game that certainly does a fair amount to distinguish itself, but in the end it is just another Pokemon style challenge.
  13. Edge Magazine
    It seems Buena Vista has gone from making lacklustre titles out of much-loved franchises to making a reasonable game from the coldest of franchises. [Mar 2007, p.82]
  14. Nintendo Power
    The game definitely has its roots in the Pokemon world, but provides enough new features to give it its own identity. [Apr 2007, p.86]
  15. 75
    If you love monster hunting, colleting, etc., this is the kind of game you'll dig.
  16. Nintendo Gamer
    Not Pokemon. In fact the very reverse of Pokemon - fixing that which was broken and breaking that which was fixed. D'oh! [Apr 2007, p.67]
  17. Official Nintendo Magazine UK
    It doesn't bring anything groungbreaking to the genre, but with some neat use of the DS Spectrobes offers a solid and enjoyable adventure if you're itching to catch some critters. [Apr 2007, p.70]
  18. Battles are clever and fun, but also a little on the sluggish side. The excavation element is cool but, like all other elements, has a downside. It's a highly repetitive process that gets old within the first hour.
  19. The slowly paced story turns the fossil digging into a chore, and the real-time battle system starts to feel the same not long after that.
  20. While the archeology and character-building elements are major successes, the game ultimately flounders on its extreme lack of challenge and derivative story-telling.
  21. Games Master UK
    Weak and insipid. [June 2007, p.80]
  22. The game does a lot, looks nice and offers some interesting options such as Wi-Fi downloads and slick trading cards that unlock new Spectrobes; but the game is ultimately more tedious than it is worth. It's also low on fun, which should be the basis of most games.
  23. As a scavenger sim Spectrobes absolutely succeeds, but scouring every inch of planet after digital planet will quickly wear thin for most people.
  24. Spectrobes takes too long to get going – the digging is a novelty that wears off way too soon – and the lack of puzzles and/or interesting side plots and quests kneecap the experience.
  25. Spectrobes tries to accomplish a lot but succeeds at very little. Its innovations are marred by rote repetition. The exploration and battle modes are at best boring and at worst mind-numbingly frustrating.
  26. Spectrobes seems to fall short because of its monotonous method of collecting and the poorly designed battle system.
  27. Although it’s got some novel gameplay elements and is stuffed with tons of things to do, Spectrobes ultimately ends up being just so-so in the fun department. Definitely not the Pokemon killer we were expecting.
  28. There's a lack of collectible species, the battle system is slow and repetitive, and the mining system is overdone. Unfortunately for the game, it relies on these gamplay elements to make it fun, and each of them comes up short. In turn, so does the game.
  29. The game never really settles and misses out in two main areas of RPGs that being the story and combat. I admire the attempt to go in a new direction, but it just didn’t work out this time.
  30. netjak
    While filled with numerous, excellent ideas, the mish-mash handling of the development destroyed the potential.
  31. The character designs aren't on "Pokemon's" level, but the effort you devote to finding and raising these characters creates a level of attachment even Nintendo hasn't quite achieved.
  32. 60
    This isn’t the first time an RPG has had trouble with the challenge of team combat in real time, and to its credit, Spectrobes comes up with an unusual way of attacking the problem.
  33. 50
    A missed opportunity. It's not that it's a terrible game (the graphics are nice, the character designs are sufficiently anime), but after about five hours I realized I'd been bored out of my skull for the last three due to the massive repetition.
  34. Not what you might expect from Disney, Spectrobes is initially refreshing but quickly becomes dull.
  35. Spectrobes is a game that has great promise. The visuals are excellent, the concept is great, the basic design is exemplary. But man oh man, when it comes to executing combat—which is the number one priority in any action/rpg—Spectrobes just doesn't deliver.
  36. 60
    As it is, Spectrobes is little more than a dull game of collecting fossils with a momentarily enjoyable gimmick attached to it.
  37. Hardcore Gamer
    Anyone looking for a unique RPG experience that takes full advantage of the DS hardware should give it a shot. [May 2007, p.62]

Awards & Rankings

User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 33 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 33
  2. Negative: 6 out of 33
  1. GeorgeSully
    Aug 26, 2008
    This game is great. Even though you are spending most of your time digging up fossils it's pretty darn good. It's perfect for anyThis game is great. Even though you are spending most of your time digging up fossils it's pretty darn good. It's perfect for any yu-gi-oh or pokemon lovers (even though I think that yu-gi-oh is crap).If you are looking for a new game to get then buy spectrobes if you have already purchased all of the pokemon games. Full Review »
  2. JoeG.
    Mar 11, 2007
    The game is really fun the game battling is awesome and digging for the fossils the game is somewhat like pokemon but not really if it was The game is really fun the game battling is awesome and digging for the fossils the game is somewhat like pokemon but not really if it was supposed to be like pokemon it is the best version they will probably never make a game like this in the pokemon style that will be better so the creator of the game did a really good job. i think that this game was the best DS game I have ever played I have trouble trying to put the game down so if you are buying a DS game Spectrobes is a good game to get. BUY Spectrobes NOW. Full Review »