Metal Slug is a series of games that arcade lovers will remember well. Yes, it's not as well known as Virtua Fighter or Tekken say, but the franchise has a massive cult following across the globe. The side-scrolling, button bashing, jump and duck action is reminicent of mid 90's video gaming at it's finest. Essentially, the series focuses on a group of government millitants who have been given the task of stopping a crazed terrorist group from blowing lots of stuff up. The first game, simply entitled Metal Slug: Super Vehicle 001, features two characters. Later games featured up to six deifferent protagonists to play as.
The seven titles are as follows:
Metal Slug: Super Vehicle 001
Metal Slug 2
Metal Slug X (A reissued, more technically advanced version of Metal Slug 2 with slight gameplay alterations.)
Metal Slug 3
Metal Slug 4
Metal Slug 5
Metal Slug 6
Metal Slug Anthology is a collection of all seven Metal Slug arcade games on one Wii disc. All seven of the titles are emulated perfectly, and feature all the original uncut animation, music and sound effects. Thankfully, all seven games have their two player modes intact, os you and a friend can shoot up the terrain together! The real beauty of this collection is that the extra features are well worth playing for. These include a 'Making Of', original and draft artwork, and a complete sound test for the games themselves. This is in vein of other 'compilation discs' released recently, such as Sonic Mega Collection or the Capcom series of games published on the PSP.
SNK Playmore (the developers of this title, and the whole series since 1996 in fact) have done a great job of converting this collection for the Wii. The graphics are smooth, the sound is crisp... The one thing that really impressed me is the control method. The Wii, is an awesome games console, but the controls can sometimes be a little restrictive, especially on ports form other consoles or (as in this case) ports from arcade units... If you need proof, download Super Mario 64 on the Wii Virtual Console. You'll soon see that the contols could have been made better even when using the Wii Classic Controller or the GameCube joypad, and this is just one example! For Metal Slug Anthology, the Wii Remote can be used in many different ways to control the action, and there are numerous setup options to allow you to also use the Wii Nunchuck in tandem with the Wii Remote. A genius move was to allow users to use their GameCube joypads also. One thing that would have been nice is the ability to use the Wii Classic Controller, but for some reason this was ommitted, although it is no great loss by any means.
So, all in all, for under £15 (at the time of writing) this collection is well worth the money. All seven of the games are fun, addictive and replayable, especially with a friend in two player mode. This game also marks the comeback of SNK as a Nintendo developer. Well, they're off to a good start! Now let's see a King of Fighters complilation next year!