iPhone Game Review: Metal Slug Touch Reviewed by JadeDragon
There are quite a few classic arcade 2D scroller shooter games, but few achieved the popularity or longevity as Metal Slug series did. The series has been imitated countless times and is often used as a yardstick for many new games with similar gameplay. Metal Slug Touch brings both a blessing and a curse to the iPhone and iPod touch: the gameplay emulates almost exactly as the original arcade versions with trademark graphics and sound, (we can hear the cheers from our fellow Metal Slug lovers), but as many straight ports of classic titles, Metal Slug Touch brought some limitations that make us wish the developer has reworked the game a bit to suit the new platform a bit better.
We won't lie to you: we are long time Metal Slug fans and couldn't wait to see it on the iOS. The Touch version sends you on four missions, which aren't nearly enough to fulfill a long time Metal Slug fan's desire anywhere, and offers four soldiers from the get-go (yes, Fio made it into this version), no unlocking needed. Levels aren't very long and each level has a large boss. The first mission sets in a desert with music an voice in Arabic to match; mission 2 takes you to the sky, replacing your tank with Slug Flyer and replacing bombs that come with tank with missiles firing from you plane; mission 3 takes place in a warehouse/submarine hub where aliens from Mars bleed green goo and a tough boss comes in a shape of gigantic alien mothership; the final mission goes into an alien ship that looks like the set of Alien, the movie.
Along with your favorites soldiers, SVs and fighter planes, you get the familiar enemies we?ve been over the years in Metal Slug series. The armed soldiers, the rocket firing heli?s, the Nazi-style armed cars, and even the alien squids from Mars with green blood in flying saucers. The prisoners too made it into the Touch version. So make sure you shoot in 360-degree so that you can rescue the prisoners you can?t see. Rescued prisoners give you bonus items including gas, bullets, points and more. Be sure to stick around to pick up the loots.
Metal Slug Touch offers three types of controls mostly let you decision where to put the virtual joystick on the screen so that you can control the movement and the direction of firing with your left joystick, and jump and special weapons (bombs, missiles, cannons, etc.) with your right. The controls work nicely emulating the real joystick and buttons in the arcade, but do try all three control schemes and find the one that suits you the best.
Unlike in the arcade, Metal Slug Touch gives you unlimited continues so that you won?t die in the first couple of mission and are guaranteed to see the end of the game. The game offers local scoreboard.
Graphics & Sound
Retro games don?t often win high praises in graphics because they try to emulate the classic look and feel. That said, fans of Metal Slug series will love what they see here. The style, colors and motif from the original series are well presented in the iOS version, and the graphics look quite good. Animations move smoothly and explosions are fun to watch. There are no frame drops or any slow-downs in the game.
Metal Slug Touch has the typical loud and techno music and funky voice-over we remember from the arcade. Each level has a bit different music but overall music tracks have over-exaggerated serious overtone, with voice like ?Thank you? from the prisoners or cries and yelps from enemies on top of the music. It sound funny and fun.
For the Metal Slug Touch faithful, an iOS version of the game brings back the memory and we can now play it anytime we want without going to the arcade. But 4 missions aren?t nearly enough, which is a fatal flaw in the eyes of series? fans. Just think after many title in the series, there are so much material, the giant crab, the yetis or mummies, and not mention so many characters to choose from, especially the Touch version has no ground soldier gameplay only vehicles and planes. Even so, if you are a die-hard MS fan, this is still a must have title in your iPhone game library.
Ratings (scale of 1 to 5):
Graphics: - 4.5 - Very cool retro style that works well on the iPhone. Sound: - 4 - Arcade music remains in the game and the over the top quirky voice overs. Controls: - 4 - Controls work well, though you need to pick the control scheme that fits you the best. Gameplay: - 4 - Awesome gamplay but way too short.
Playing Hints and Tips:
- It?s worth the time to wait for the prisoners to give you the bonus items.
- You can shoot at all directions, so jump on a ledge to avoid enemy fires but rain down bullets on the enemies.
- Shoot at 360-degrees because you often can?t see the prisoners but you can free them when you shoot especially up.