By Steve Baltimore / March 30th, 2021
|Title||Metal Slug 1st Mission / 2nd Mission|
|Release Date||March 17th|
|Age Rating||ESRB – Teen|
I recently had a chance to check out the NeoGeo Pocket Color Selection Volume 1 on the Nintendo Switch. I found the collection to be very solid with 10 fantastic games at a very reasonable price. Among those titles were two Metal Slug games called 1st and 2nd Mission. This was the first time these titles have had an official release in North America, so I thought a short review was in order. Let’s see if these two pocket-sized adventures are worth of your time.
Each of these titles has a unique story. In Metal Slug 1st Mission you take on the role of a hero trying to stop illegal weapon sales and bring the villains to justice. It is very important you succeed in this task because they are selling very high grade weapons, even the SV-000 “METAL SLUG” prototype. Metal Slug 2nd Mission is a direct follow up to the previous story. A special strike force has begun a campaign to take over the government. They have taken many soldiers hostage, and have made contact with aliens! Yea, I was like WTF here as well, Anyway, the aliens are giving the rebels new technology. There is only way to solve this problem: brute force of course! Lay siege to their fortress and rescue all of the POWs!
Graphically, both games look great. I’m always impressed with what SNK was able to do with this little handheld. The character sprites and backgrounds look great, and have a good amount of detail. This version gives you the option to play in two different color modes or black and white. I stuck with New Color since I liked it the best, but it’s great they were included for players to mess around with. The games run well for the most part, but like every Metal Slug game ever there is some slowdown in places. This usually happens when tons of things are blowing up on the screen at one time.
Like the other classic titles released so far, the soundtrack here is top quality. The chiptunes here will have you humming along as you blast away hordes of baddies. I think I enjoyed the tunes in Metal Slug 2nd Mission a bit more than the first one, but I liked them both a lot. The sound effects are nothing special but they get the job done. I mean what’s a Metal Slug title without some bad ass explosion effects!
Gameplay here is similar to the arcade counterparts, but there are some big differences. You still run through each mission blasting all the baddies with a variety of weapons and saving POWs. The major change here is each of these games has a lot more missions than arcade titles. The first game has around 17 missions and the second one has double that. There are multiple routes out of certain stages and in Metal Slug 2nd Mission of the two characters has their own unique weapons and missions. Another thing to note is getting your vehicle blown up will not end the mission. You will be taken to alternate route instead. I really enjoyed this since it gave each game some replay value.
The two games here have some changes between them as well. In Metal Slug 1st Mission to use a grenade you have to hit Plus button to change from your current weapon to them. I found this very annoying and I was pretty happy when they changed this in the next game to where Plus just throws the damn things. One other change is in the first game you gained continues by collecting medals, but in the second game these are acquired by scoring points. Both of these systems work pretty well, and I never came close to running out during either of my playthroughs.
I’ve always loved the Metal Slug games, but I didn’t expect these pocket sized titles to be a good as they are. The gameplay is fun, there are lots of areas to explore and who doesn’t love blowing up everything in sight for fun? The games look great, and SNK delivered another great quality soundtrack as well. I spent a few hours on each of these and I really want to play more of Metal Slug 2nd Mission since I hear there is a nice unlockable for completing all the missions. These two games made an already good collection great, and like I said in the other review, if you’re looking for fun classic games to play on the go, this is an easy pickup.
Game was provided by the publisher for review.
Metal SlugNeo Geo Pocketnintendo switchSNK