Video Games

REVIEW: Contra

contraTaken right from the back of the box:

“The universe teeters on the brink of total annihilation at the hands of the vile alien warmonger, Red Falcon. Earth’s only hope rests with you, a courageous member of the Special Forces elite commando squad. Your mission: Battle deep into the deadly Amazon jungle, where the Red Falcon and his galactic henchmen have transformed ancient Mayan temples into awesome monuments dedicated to mass destruction. A multitude of weapons, from rapid-fire machine guns to high-tech lasers are at your disposal as you sweat blood, fighting past 3-D mazes, underground security systems, and tropical forests surrounded by giant waterfalls and alien cannons. This is the ultimate test for the ultimate guerilla warrior. And if you survive, Earth survives!”

Contra. The great old NES game where you’re some dude with a bandana and a huge gun and your mission is to run left and right and shoot what I think are aliens. They look like aliens. Wait…they may be robots. Nonetheless, you shoot them and they go bye bye.

contra1It sounds so simple and stupid, but those two things it is not. Contra is a beautiful game that, despite its age, stands up as a gem amongst the crop of new games out there. It’s challenging, well crafted, and best of all, it controls really well. I seem to remember a lot of NES games having very clunky controls where if you hit the direction pad up you’d go down and usually that would mean shark infested waters and death. Not with Contra. The game controls like…butter? I guess so.

So yes, where was I? You’re one of two tough looking guys and you have a big gun. You use this big gun (which you can get many power-ups for, such as a flame thrower, contra2spread shot, and much more) to kill stuff. Alien stuff. Robots. Who knows. You go through a bunch of stages doing this. Does it get old? Not at all. Not only do you have the typical left to right type stages, you also have these pseudo 3-D stages where you’re running through a base dodging lasers beams, electrical fields, and of course, aliens and/or robots.

In the end….Contra rules. Track it down, any way you can, and have some fun. But let me give you a little hint first.

Press Start after this, and you’ve got the famous Konami Code. Type in this code before the title screen fully loads up and you’ll get 30 lives. You’ll need them unless you’re some kind of mega Contra genius.

contra3

Final Score 10/10

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