Metal Slug: Super Vehicle-001 (メタルスラッグ, Metaru Suraggu) is a run and gun action shooting game developed and originally released by Nazca Corporation and later published by SNK for the Neo Geo console/arcade platform in 1996. The game is widely known for its sense of humor, fluid hand-drawn animation, and fast paced two-player action. It is the first title in the Metal Slug series.
The game was released for PlayStation 4 as part of the line "ACA Neo Geo" developed by Hamster Corporation.
The Metal Slug storyline stretches from the beginning of the era of modern-day terrorism, set in the near-future of 2028. There are two militant factions that struggle for power: the Rebellion and the Regular Army. The Regular Army is a well-equipped, modern-day force run by various nations around the world. The Rebellion is comprised of various small, organized militant groups, ranging from terrorists to splinter groups of military forces driven by a hunger for power.
The Regular Army is a very formidable force. However, it lacks effectiveness due to the widespread corruption within the chain of command. Other officials often deny the reports and recommendations given to them by intelligence officers. This often leads to intelligence failures that result in dramatic consequences.
Vice Admiral Donald Morden of the Regular Army Marine Corps is one of the main characters that sparks the events of Metal Slug. He has a reputation of being a tough, efficient, and caring officer of the Regular Army, and is held in high regard by his troops. He is also a caring father to his son. However, Morden immediately defects over to the Rebellion when his son is killed in the Central Park bombing caused by an intelligence failure on the part of the Regular Army. He self-promoted to General.
In 2026, a year after the attempted assassination of the President of the United States launched by the Rebellion under General Donald Morden's command, the Rebellion launched a massive attack against the Regular Army forces around the world. Although the Regular Army intelligence agency had many indications that such an attack was imminent, Regular Army officials again ignored the warnings. With the Regular Army forces surprised, the Rebellion nearly annihilated them with their superior numbers and emergent technologies.
The Regular Army planned a massive counter-attack against the rebellion. Advanced tanks, designated "Super Vehicle-001" were designed to aid the Regular Army commandos. These tanks were mass-produced but kept in caches until the Regular Army had amassed enough to begin a counter-attack. However, the tanks were seized by the Rebels in 2028 because of another intelligence failure by the Regular Army.
Seeing the Regular Army panic and crumble, 1st Lieutenant Marco Rossi of the Regular Army Peregrine Falcons special forces unit quickly unites remaining Regular Army units and begins a commando operation to reclaim the tanks. Fighting alongside him is Second Lieutenant Tarma Roving from the same unit.
After various campaigns, the Regular Army defeats the Rebellion forces and reestablishes stability. General Donald Morden is apprehended near the end of the conflict and is jailed in a maximum security military prison complex while awaiting trial for his war crimes.
The soldiers of the Peregrine Falcons squad were declared heroes by the Regular Army officials, with the lieutenants Marco and Tarma being credited with many awards. However, not everyone treated the P.F. squad as such because Regular Army officials had been discredited by their failure to prevent the Rebellion attack.
The player has to constantly shoot at a continual stream of enemies in order to reach the end of a level. At the end of each level, the player must confront a boss who is often considerably larger than regular enemies and takes multiple shots to defeat. On the way through the level, the player finds weapons upgrades and "slug" vehicles that can be used not only as weapons but also as added defense.
The protagonists can perform melee attacks by using a knife and/or kicking. The player does not die for simply coming into contact with most enemies. Correspondingly, many of the enemy troops have melee attacks. Much of the game's scenery is destructible. Sometimes this reveals extra items or powerups, most of the time it simply results in collateral damage.
During the course of a level, the player encounters POWs. If these are freed, the player can receive bonuses in the form of random items or weapons. The player receives a score bonus for freeing prisoners at the end of the level; at this point the game shows the name and rank of each POW freed. If the player dies before the end of the level, the tally of freed prisoners is deleted.
There are a total of six levels, with themes ranging from forests, garrisoned cities, snowy mountain valleys, canyons, and military bases.
The vast majority of enemies encountered in Metal Slug are enemy soldiers, who are given weaponry that fits their specific role. There also a host of mechanized enemies: tanks, mobile artillery, aircraft, armored personnel carriers and technicals. Much of the game's humor comes from how the enemies portray themselves. The player encounters them at many times of leisure: sunbathing, roasting food over a fire, or just conversing amongst themselves.
SV-001: The title's namesake is the main vehicle found throughout the game. It can only be used by one player at a time. The Metal Slug features a ball-turreted rapid-firing Vulcan cannon that can fire in any direction, and a heavy main cannon. The main cannon uses ammo separate from grenades and other weapons, and is much more powerful. Hand grenades can still be hurled out of the vehicle. The vehicle can sustain three direct hits before destruction; health is restored by finding gas canisters. When vehicle health is completely depleted, the player has only seconds to vacate the vehicle before it explodes. The vehicle can also be used as a kamikaze weapon, which sends it on a suicide ramming attack as the player jumps out.
Machine gun turret: In the final mission, the player will at one point be on a submarine with a turret. The turret can only be fired 180 degrees and its shots are identical to the pistol's. However, it is rapid-firing like the tank.
Box Art Edit
- Wii Virtual Console page
- GOG Store page
- Arcade Archives official website, product page
- Neo Geo CD Gameplay Footage
- Combat School dialogue footage
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