Posts Tagged ‘ Contra ’

Retro Review: Contra (NES)

Title: Contra
System: Nintendo Entertainment System

Billy and Lance run and gun to save the world from totally-not-Xenomorphs

Contra was released by Konami for the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1988 after its arcade release the year before. While it’s considered a classic for the console, it is possibly more remembered for the famous Konami code that granted an extra 30 lives. The game, like many NES entries, is certainly a challenge with 3 lives and 3 continues, but the Konami code makes it far more approachable and fun to play through the whole game. With or without the code, the run and gun certainly earns its status as a classic.

A variety of weapon upgrades and the ability to shoot to the left, right, straight up and down, and even diagonally make a fun shooter while there are enough enemies and hails of bullets to avoid to keep the challenge present. Despite more than 30 years of new entries to the genre, Contra still feels fun today, even though the controls aren’t quite as sharp as they could be.

Graphically, the game still holds up well enough for an 8 bit contender and while the music may not be filled with memorable chiptunes, it doesn’t grate on the ears either.

Whether a familiar classic to be revisited or an 8 bit entry yet to be tackled, Contra is still worth a playthrough. Just remember Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A, Start (or Select Start for 2 player) if you find the standard allotment of lives to be a bit tight.