- Original release year: 1996
- Consoles: Arcade, Neo Geo, Neo Geo CD, Sega Saturn, PlayStation (later: Every console ever)
There’s a few run-and-gun, side-scrolling shooting games I really enjoyed growing up. The main one though was the Contra series, but fuck me, that series was hard as nails. Seriously. I’ve gone back to both Contra 3 and Hard Corps to try and review them for this blog of mine, but nope, can’t do it. I get my ass handed to me every time. Don’t get me wrong, awesome games, but I suck at them. I did start to get into Hard Corps a bit once I worked out some strategies, but damn those games are unforgiving.
So eventually I gravitated towards another series, one I actually ended up enjoying far more than Contra. I’m talking about the awesome, the explosive Metal Slug games. Which is my favourite? The very first game.
When you load up Metal Slug, you are given a choice of two different characters. This game is best played in 2 player mode, but is still awesome if you’re playing alone. After choosing your character you drop straight into the action. You run and fight your way through awesomely designed levels, saving hostages and generally kicking ass, shooting everything in sight. You start the game armed with just a pistol and some grenades (and a knife for close combat), but along the way you can pick up everything from machine guns to shotguns to flamethrowers to rocket launchers etc.
So that all sounds pretty cool, right? But that’s not it, you can also jump into tanks and vehicles along the way, allowing you to cause even more destruction. It just makes that much more fun to play.
When you get to the end of the levels, there are fantastic, huge boss battles waiting for you. They’re all brilliant and not too difficult, but not too easy to beat. The difficulty level is just right in Metal Slug, meaning anyone can pick it up and play, but there’s enough challenge to keep you playing for a while. Metal Slug is the perfect run and gun game that everyone should play at least once.