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Contra

魂斗羅

Developer / Publisher: Konami
20 February 1987
Contra [魂斗羅] - cover art
Glitchwave rating
3.51 / 5.0
0.5
5.0
 
 
698 Ratings / 2 Reviews
#1,191 All-time
#3 for 1987
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1987 Konami  
XEU
1987 Konami  
XNA
1987 Konami  
JP
Show all 12 releases
1988 Konami  
Cartridge
XNA 0 83717 11009 5 NES-CT-USA
1988 Konami  
Cartridge
JP 4 988602 534061 RC826
1990 Konami  
Cartridge
ES 0 83717 11009 5 NES-77-ESP
1990 Konami  
Cartridge
XEU
魂斗羅 オレたちゲーセン族
2006 Konami Hamster  
CD-ROM
JP 4 529651 001441 SLPM 62730
2006 Konami  
Download
2010 Konami  
Download
JP
2014 Konami  
Download
JP
2016 Konami Hamster  
Download
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Title
The two mumbling beefcakes of 80s Hollywood are together at last! With the mission to storm straight into Nicaragua and violently usurp their current socialist government on the behalf of Ronald Reagan and initiate an entire massacre on civilians kick some alien ass in New Zeland in the year 2633, this arcade shooting cornerstone completely embodies Dukie's credo of being a badass, shooting everything in sight, and chewing bubble gum.

It has to be said this is an evolution of Konami's many shooter games(evolving straight from "Scramble [スクランブル]" up through "Gradius"), that sticks to the principle that you need the power-ups and that once you die once, you lose them all and are pretty much a gonner. It's a requirement to have power-ons all of the time, and it is damning every time you get something that is not the spread gun or machine gun. Often these swaps get irreplaceable, and you need them especially for the later-game bosses, although they're so hard they'll reduce you to using pea shooters anyway.

Like "OutRun [アウトラン]", I think "Contra" can be credited for managing to invigorate the 16-bit artstyle. The jungles are pretty and lush, the sprites of the heroes are wonderfuly recognisable, crisp, realistic, and you can imagine the whole package being seamlessly translated for the Mega Drive. And also the alien designs can get really yucky and disturbingly organic. It's so funny and artful how this pastiche on "Commando" so seamlessly blends into the finale of "Alien", and just couple it with early forerunners of gaping stone faces shooting fireballs that are so obviously an inspiration for Sega's "Altered Beast [獣王記]".

"Contra" officially has 7 stages but with the change of landscapes it really feels more like 10. As a casual player it is perfectly achievable to reach(or even beat) about half the game, but then it just starts being very brazen and uneven with its difficulty spikes. Some segments are obviously breather portions meant for relaxation, just so that some insurmountable, bullet-spamming boss is waiting around the corner. But it was an arcade game, what can I say, and people must have been compelled to get to memorise all of these patterns, using only the advantage of your high platforming flexibility in tow. I know I certainly was, and every single time I took it on the hand, I always felt I could reach a step forward, and that excercising that excitement is certainly a mark of good game design.
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Clownboss 2016-08-19T15:11:15Z
2016-08-19T15:11:15Z
3.5
2
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Best of: ARC
OLD REVIEW (19Aug 2016)

Oh hey, it's classic Contra. Unlike the NES port the arcade version has only seven levels but it plays completely the same(although the famed NES port is probably way tighter and the wider screen helps a lot, it's just a more creative and much easier game). You walk and gun stuff on the way while avoiding other bullets and the enemies are very varied in regards to the directions they come from, but so is your arsenal, which includes the pea shooter, a lame flamethrower, an okay laser beam, and the beast of a spreadgun. The changes of perspective in this game are really bold and the pseudo 3D levels are quite fun to jump around, but the showcase lasts for way too short to present anything else.
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Duck!
Contra is one of the most famous run and gunners out there, known primarly for its difficulty. That much i can say its true, being a 1 hit kill game in which you are given 3 lives to get through the whole thing makes it a feat to beat it. There are quite a lot of enemies and projectiles on screen as well, and on top of it the actual projectiles are prety small and can be hard to spot agains the background. I have no problem in admiting i havent got very far. Its a game that controls well, its action packed, but the constant death makes it frustrating to play. There are a lot of powerups to help you on you way, but to be fair i found some of the weapons worst than the basic weapon. I do understand what made it such an iconic title at the time, but i havent had much fun playing it nowadays.
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Threntall 2016-06-21T12:47:23Z
2016-06-21T12:47:23Z
3.0
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Catalog

SylentEcho 魂斗羅 2024-04-11T12:38:22Z
2024-04-11T12:38:22Z
5.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
zurrange 魂斗羅 2024-04-10T00:22:09Z
2024-04-10T00:22:09Z
3.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
ultraaguy1 魂斗羅 2024-04-09T22:52:29Z
2024-04-09T22:52:29Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
MasterOfShaft 魂斗羅 2024-04-09T22:09:00Z
2024-04-09T22:09:00Z
Good
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
kafeis 魂斗羅 2024-04-09T18:45:24Z
2024-04-09T18:45:24Z
3.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
WelikePapaya Probotector 2024-04-06T23:53:00Z
NES • ES
2024-04-06T23:53:00Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
MikeyPaine Contra 2024-04-04T05:05:56Z
NES • XNA
2024-04-04T05:05:56Z
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
hcgc0812 魂斗羅 2024-03-29T13:55:51Z
2024-03-29T13:55:51Z
2.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Danilo_charliebrownjunio 魂斗羅 2024-03-29T02:34:59Z
2024-03-29T02:34:59Z
C
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
talkingradioheads Contra 2024-03-28T22:40:06Z
NES • XNA
2024-03-28T22:40:06Z
3.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Run and gun 2D platformer
public_transport 魂斗羅 2024-03-27T21:50:30Z
2024-03-27T21:50:30Z
1.0
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
2
Gibbous 魂斗羅 2024-03-25T05:23:53Z
2024-03-25T05:23:53Z
3.5
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Player modes
1-2 players
Multiplayer modes
Cooperative
Multiplayer options
Local
Franchises
Also known as
  • Contra
  • Gryzor
  • Probotector
  • Arcade Archives Contra
  • View all [4] Hide

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  • Previous comments (10) Loading...
  • Clownboss 2022-10-27 21:30:34.297294+00
    Personal best: 108,300pts
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  • anderd0504 2022-11-07 19:21:45.597207+00
    feel like the difficulty ramps up like crazy in the second half but never felt unfair (except those goddamn tanks in the snow levels)

    Anyways easily one of the best games of the 80s, looks great and holds up super well. Play the famicom version for better graphics + cutscenes.
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  • Cody645 2022-12-13 17:44:14.247626+00
    Glad the konami code exists
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  • Cody645 2022-12-13 17:50:14.056294+00
    Ratio
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  • ffsroman 2022-12-31 21:49:31.093202+00
    call me noob but this shit was impossible without the code
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  • sudatantalus 2023-02-26 20:01:06.317493+00
    the NES versions of the contra games were some of the first evidence that being capable of "higher tech" didnt mean better quality graphics and sound, the arcade version just feels so much worse bc of it
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  • anderd0504 2023-04-25 17:10:21.714572+00
    This is so underrated. Especially if you get an English patch of the Japanese version with better animations/cutscenes. Super fun, super modern, super repayable
    reply
    • HeatherMadhouse 2023-05-15 15:24:35.853871+00
      i think contra's not underrated by the general public
    • Regal_Throes 2024-01-30 17:33:52.16468+00
      Everybody knows Contra. It's well emblazoned in the publics perception. People who don't play video games know Contra.
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