METAL SLUG XX PlayStation 4 Review

Load up your Heavy Machine-guns and head for battle once more.

By RON, Posted 07 Jun 2018

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. The Metal Slug franchise is one of the most popular and beloved series in the run-and-gun genre and it has been for almost 20 years now. Most of us have played at least one game in the series, either on console, handheld, arcade cabinet or virtual console, like the PS Network.

Metal Slug XX for the PS4 is not just an emulated game or a simple port, but a great remastered edition of the PSP classic. What stands out immediately is that the 16 bit era classic has received the full 4K treatment, a first for the series and, despite being a 2D game with 16 bit sprites, the game looks awesome played with this level of definition. Not only that, but SNK has taken care of the nostalgia factor and added some filters to the game itself so you can have the full retro experience. You can select a filter that makes the game look as if it were being played on a classic television set or even on an arcade cabinet. Not a drastic game changer, but definitely a welcome addition.

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Another added bonus is the inclusion of Leona, Clark and Ralf, members of the Ikari Warriors Team from SNK’s massively popular King of Fighters series, whom made their way to the Metal Slug roster as playable characters to a historic seven different ones to choose from. It is quite interesting to see these characters turned into sprites with the iconic Metal Slug aesthetics.

The game itself, for those who haven’t played it, is an enhanced and revised edition of Metal Slug 7, which continues the ongoing conflict between the Regular Army and the Rebel Army. In this game, the Regular Army makes use of elements from the S.P.A.R.R.O.W.S., the Peregrine Falcons Squad and the Ikari Warrios Team to try to investigate the resurgence of the Rebel Army forces after a period of sustained peace. After assessing the situation and confronting their sworn enemies again, the Special Forces teams get a quick victory only to find out that a time portal opened which allowed the Rebel Army from the future, the Future Rebels, aid their present day counterparts.

Whimsical as it is, the game features a new variety of vehicles to traverse each level, from armored and weapons capable mining carts that can interconnect to giant mechs, and even an armored ostrich which allows for leaps over big distances. This is also true for the bosses the franchise is famous for. The design work behind each entry in the series is remarkable, as boss vehicles become increasingly more imaginative each time. In this game, we can find things like a worm-like modular excavator, a very charismatic robot-like assault vehicle or even a modular tank that occupies most of the screen, in which you have to travel and move around while also shooting.

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Being from an era in which arcades wanted to get the most money out of kids’ pockets, these games were designed to be incredibly difficult to beat with only one set of lives, however, even though those days in which ridiculous difficult levels were norm are now behind us, their essence is still part of what makes the series great. To top this, the game has three different difficulty levels, beginner, normal and hard. Furthermore, Metal Slug XX also features the Combat School mode, in which the player is presented a series of challenges to complete.

For a game almost a decade old, Metal Slug XX still holds up and keeps on being a great part of the run-and-gun genre, something fun to play either by yourself or with friends. This is especially easy thanks to local multiplayer and online multiplayer via Share Play. The game itself does not really deviate from other entries in the series and, as most Metal Slug games, doesn’t even try to innovate, except for the obvious additions of new vehicles and enemies; other than that, the game sticks to a simple run-and-gun  formula and relies on tested game mechanics and simple level design. For those unfamiliar with classic arcade games and run-and-gun gameplay, most levels are quite simple: you start in a point A and try to make it to point B (where you will find a giant mech-like boss) with a little help from your weapons and vehicles. Along the way, hordes of enemies will try to stop you shooting whatever new weapon they have on their hands, from simple pistols, bazookas, grenades and comically stereotypical rockets to more sophisticated arms, like flamethrowers, sniper rifles and ray guns; enemy vehicles are also part of the formula, from helicopters and bombers to caravans, tanks, artillery and more. But it’s not just simple soldiers that will try to kill you and your fellow squad members. Metal Slug is famous for the nonsensical level of theatricality some enemies reach, ranging from Martians and zombies all the way to yetis, insectoid aliens, mutants and everything in between.

METAL SLUG XX,PlayStation 4,Review,Gameplay,Screenshots,Boss Fights

Fortunately, Metal Slug is also famous for the wide range of weaponry the player has at their disposal, usually obtained when freeing a POW, destroying some enemies or even when respawning after a continue. Amongst the arsenal one can –and must– acquire to increase their chances for survival are: the famous Heavy Machine Gun, the Laser Shot, the Iron Lizard, the Rocket Launcher, the Flamethrower, the Super Grenade, to name a few and, available only on Metal Slug 7 and XX, the Thunder Shot, a powerful weapon that shoots blue homing rays towards enemies – very practical in situations where you find yourself surrounded. Speaking of new additions, perhaps the only ones along the Thunder Shot are the new moves to each specific character, like Marco’s Burst Shot, which allows him to shoot his standard pistol faster while not moving or Tarma’s ability to “fix” the Metal Slugs by kicking them, with a random chance for damage. In the end, these new mechanics are minor and barely worth mentioning, because most of the time one will be jumping, running and gunning, as it has always been and probably will always be.

The game is available now on the PS Store at a $19.99 price tag, so load up your Heavy Machineguns and head for battle once more.

Also, check METAL SLUG X PlayStation 4 Review.


Sarwar Ron, NoobFeed
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General Information



Platform(s): PS4
Publisher(s): SNK Corporation
Developer(s): SNK Playmore
Genres: 2D Platformer
Themes: Run N’ Gun
Release Date: 2018-05-2018

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