Saturday 12 January, 2008
Summary: Since the defeat of Red Falcon (in Contra 3), the Earth has once again prospered in peace. However, a new invasion has begun! Earth never seems to get a break as a new group of aliens (called Black Viper) enslaves the human race and destroys anything that get in their path! But what exactly gets in the way of their path to destruction?
Two shirtless guys...insanely ripped...wearing bandanas...and wield rifles equipped with infinite ammo.
Gameplay: I shall heed you a warning. This game is absolutely NOT for the casual gamer. Why? Because this game will kick your butt. I'm not using the word "might" because it WILL kick your butt. In fact, this game will beat you so bad that you'll end up in the hospital! And once you're in the hospital thinking that everything will be OK, Contra 4 will be there and beat you down WHILE you're in your hospital bed!
But what kind of game is Contra 4? For those of you who do not know, it is a side-scrolling 2-D shoot-everything game. Your primary goal? Rid the world of aliens trying to enslave the human race. Yup, not very epic. But it gets the job done. Side-scrollers aren't meant to have great stories anyway (I mean, c'mon, a plumber rescuing a princess from a giant lizard?).
The controls for the game are simple. Y (the most important button) is to shoot. B is to jump (second most important). X is to use your grappling hook (so you can travel both the top AND bottom screen). L is to switch your weapons (you're allowed 2). Hold down R to stand in place while shooting (because you usually run AND gun at the same time).
I myself am a bit experienced with the world of Contra, so I thought I'd try playing the game on Normal mode first. Scrolling through the first level, Contra fans will recognize the homage to the NES version instantly. The jungle level with remixed music. It doesn't get any better than that. And a few seconds going across the level, JOY! My first power-up! But as soon as I touch the stupid thing, 4 bullets and 6 different guy jump towards my way. Again, if you aren't familiar with Contra, I want to let you know that touching ANYTHING bad means instant death. And, as you can imagine, I lost one life already. About 20 seconds into the game and I ALREADY died! No biggy, I'll just rely on the rest of the lives that I hav...oh...died again. Crap (yes, I'm playing as I type this).
Despite the absolute FRUSTRATION I am going through right now, I already know I love this game. Sure, you only get a set number of lives (5 on Normal), and yes, you do get killed with just ONE hit. But I just LOVE the challenge! The biggest challenge by far is keeping track of the action going on in TWO screens (it is the DS after all). You may come across a point where you've destroyed everything on the bottom screen, but enemies from the TOP screen will be raining bullets down on you. Not easy stuff.
Great entry, but where's your design section? The only thing I'd have to say to change is, well, you need a design entry. Saying what buttons do what isn't really talking about design. how are the levels set up? What does it look like? What about it makes it so hard to play? Other than that, totally great entry! Just write in a design section, and label it like you did with the other two sections.
Thursday 17 January, 2008 by Dziva