Metal Slug XX Review
Metal Slug XX box art
System: PSP Review Rating Legend
Dev: SNK Playmore 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Atlus 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Feb. 23, 2010 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1-2 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Teen 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

Speaking of features, what Metal Slug XX for PSP really brings to the table is co-op ad hoc multiplayer. The DS version of the game inexplicably shipped without local co-op play. For anyone that grew up with Metal Slug at the arcade, playing this title alone is like kissing your sister. Fortunately, Metal Slug XX does let you join up with a buddy. However, due to the ad hoc-only support, your friend will have to pick up a copy of Metal Slug XX too. This definitely hampers the co-op side of things. While I know companies are in the business to sell games, and this title retails for just $19.99, a little Game Sharing love would have been nice, even if it was only for a set of Combat School challenges.

Metal Slug XX screenshot

Combat School is SNK Playmore's way of increasing the amount of gameplay in Metal Slug XX. As mentioned previously, the campaign is only seven levels long, so the additional 70+ challenges presented by the Combat School are welcome. However, only a handful of them are particularly clever and unique, most are essentially rehashed, mini-gameplay elements found in the campaign. Still, passing the challenges should keep some players busy for several more hours.

Graphically, the game is awesome. That's assuming you enjoy 2-D pixel art. I happen to think the quirky levels, bodacious weaponry, hilarious death animations, wacky Slugs (unique tank-like vehicles for which the series is known), and larger-than-life bosses are a real pleasure to behold. Classic sounds such as "Thank you" when POWs are saved and the rumbling rapport of bombs and firearms are bested only by the quintessential arcade background themes. Controls are where the game falters in terms of production. Disappointingly, neither the D-pad or analog nub are particularly well tuned, making it tricky to overcome stages efficiently on higher difficulties.

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In the end, Metal Slug XX is a gaming experience I thoroughly enjoyed. However, I grew up blowing through my allowance at Aladdin's Castle. The fact is, the Metal Slug experience simply isn't particularly well replicated on handhelds, and the PSP version isn't an exception; the co-op multiplayer offered on the system is only playable if you have two copies lying around, and the control scheme on Sony's portable is decidedly less acceptable than what was found on DS back in '08. I expect only hardcores and nostalgic gamers to truly enjoy the game. Everyone else will probably play it a handful of times and set it aside.

By Jonathan Marx
CCC Editor / News Director

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
4.0
Graphics
The quirky action, 2-D pixel art, and funny death animations are great. Being able to select varying screen outputs was a good idea.
2.5
Control
This is a franchise that is meant to be played in a cabinet.
4.0
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The sound effects are satisfying and the BGM is classically appealing.
3.0
Play Value
Depends on the type of gamer you are. Some people will get about an hour worth of fun, others will slave away for weeks on end.
3.5
Overall Rating - Good
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Arcade fun made portable - The full glory of the Metal Slug arcade experience has been perfectly captured on the PlayStation Portable with signature off-the-wall military "run and gun" gameplay, colorful, cartoony humor and the opportunity to play together with a friend.
  • Multiplayer Metal Slug - Get the full Metal Slug experience that recalls the good old days of gaming with your friends when you join up over local wireless to take on missions in two-player co-op ad hoc mode.
  • Play again and again - Uncover something new on every playthrough! Choose between three difficulty modes and six playable characters that offer unique weapons and attack moves. Seven levels with diverging paths challenge you with different enemies and obstacles.
  • Combat School tests the true Metal Slug fan with more than 70 mission-based trials that determine military rank.


  • Screenshots / Images
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