Wii Ware – 1000 Points ($10)
Reviewed Using Classic Controller
Remember Contra III anybody? of course you do, it was only one of the best games of the 16-bit generation! How about Contra 4 or all the Contra’s in-between, not so much huh? That’s because they have all (with the exception of maybe Hard Corp on the Genesis) failed to live up to the magic of the 1992 Super Nintendo classic. Now 17 years later Konami are once again conducting witchcraft in an attempt to bring Contra back to its former glory with Contra Rebirth. Rebirth sees the Contra series return home to a Nintendo console after almost 2 decades and it terms of greatness it picks up right where Contra III left off. As with any Contra co-op is the way to go so if you’re fortunate enough to have a buddy beside you who’s willing to play more than just Madden and/or Gears Of War you’re in for a real treat. The game features 5 stages, 3 difficulty levels and (praise the lord) unlimited continues, successfully conquering each difficulty grants you access to 1 of 3 unlockables. During your first play-through you’re bound to crack a few smiles as memories of your childhood come rushing back to you as you once again traverse through areas seen in previous games. Unfortunately though the graphics are way below what the Wii can handle and game runs in 4:3 without so much as a fancy boarder, just plain old black bars.
Rebirth is essentially Contra turned all the way up to 11, from start to end you can expect to see swarms of enemies, bullets flying everywhere and tons of explosions yet compared to previous games in the series Rebirth can feel a little shallow. Most of the game is spent running to the right whilst gunning down every enemy in sight, gone are the vehicle, top down and tunnel stages which would have helped to break up the games frantic flow. Also the weapon selection in Rebirth is very barebones with an Automatic Rifle, Homing Missiles, Laser and Spreadshot being the only artillery at your despoil. Another bummer is that the game story is laughably bad, Contra has never been known for having a good story (or a story at all even) but all the talk about “Elite Contra Space Warriors” and “Neo-Salamander Army’s” in Rebirth is enough to make you go on a real life killing-spree. None of this really matters though because once your running though areas shooting bad guys in the face until they explode you’ll be having the time of your life. Hopefully Komani will one day re-release this title on the PSN/XBLA with a HD coating, online co-op and more god-damn guns! Then I can have the pleasure of rewarding it with the 9 stars it deserves, until then it has to settle for…