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35 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible Gaming of the Past
The First Contra game was fantastic. Most people, no doubt, have probably at least heard of the exploits of the game. No, Contra can't hold a candle up to games in terms of graphics and sound, and the people who bash on the game for that are probably too young to remember Contra, or they're too busy being stuck in the 3D era that side scrollers are too "kiddish" for...
Published on June 16, 2006 by S. Rhodes

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Technically, the game did work. But it took about an hour of messing with it..
Published 5 months ago by Alycia


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35 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible Gaming of the Past, June 16, 2006
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Contra (Video Game)
The First Contra game was fantastic. Most people, no doubt, have probably at least heard of the exploits of the game. No, Contra can't hold a candle up to games in terms of graphics and sound, and the people who bash on the game for that are probably too young to remember Contra, or they're too busy being stuck in the 3D era that side scrollers are too "kiddish" for them. Those gamers obviously haven't played old school. Contra is not only one of the hardest games out there (as most 8-bit and 16-bit games are a lot harder than the 32-bit and over generation), it's one the greatest of the NES generation.

What made Contra perhaps one of the greatest games wasn't just it's run and gun action. It was also the way it handles its two-player co-op. Rather than taking turns like in a game like Mario, or waiting for someone to switch to you like say... Donkey Kong Country, Contra put both characters on screen at a time and had you both running and gunning down enemies. The screen kept moving along as well. One character might end up leaving the other behind. Either way, Contra was one of the first games that forced you to work together instead of competing. Over the course of the game you (and your partner if you had one) would collect different types of weapons that went flying over head.

You began with the default rifle which only fired one shot at a time. Over the course of the game you could find different sorts of weapons. You could get a machine gun, a laser, a flamethrower or a spread gun. Also, there was a barrier, a rapid fire and a super bomb. You could only hold one type of gun at a time, but the latter group could be obtained without replacing the gun. Any Contra veteran can tell you that of all the guns, the Spread Gun was the best of the lot. It was powerful, spread your shots out and could hit anything. Combine the Spread Gun with Rapid Fire and you were nearly invincible. Keyword: Nearly.

Contra is often cited (along with Mega Man and its sequel Super C) as being one of the hardest 8-bit games out there. This is because when it came to your lives in Contra, you died in one hit. Not only that but you only began with two lives. Konami, feeling that yes, they had made a hard game, supplied gamers with a code they could use. Over the years this has become known to be the Classic Konami Code: Up Up Down Down Left Right Left Right B A Start. Any old school gamer who played Contra KNOWS this code. It gave you thirty lives. If, however, you really wanted to show your skills at Contra, you played without the code and you tried not to get hit at all! It can be done, but it takes a lot of practice.

Graphic and Sound wise, it's unrealistic to think the game could hold a candle up to the likes of Contra: Shattered Soldier or something like Metal Gear Solid 3. This doesn't mean the sound in Contra is bad. It's rather tiring to talk to some gamers who dismiss Contra simply because it's old, or because it can't survive. This, of course, is untrue, as many NES and SNES games have become some of the most sought after of all time. A game made in the 80's is not going to look like a game made in the new millenium. It seems kind of strange (and almost stupid) to have to point that out to the so-called "modern" gamer, when no one has to point out that a movie made in 1986 won't look like a movie made in 2006. If that makes me snobbish, so be it, but the modern gamer today does need to learn that the NES is not capable of, and will not be capable of, what the XBOX360 can do, and to compare to the two is like comparing apples and bananas. However, I find the music in Contra to be among the best of the 8-bit generation (nothing matches the very first Super Mario Bros., however). I often find myself humming these tunes.

Contra truly is one of the greatest games ever made. Not only did it pioneer two player co-op (the other game that comes to mind that did it so well is Turtles II), but it also provided the challenge that so many modern games are missing today. One hit kills, and being a one-man army up against it all. Some deaths might seem inevitable, but on the whole, Contra is a fantastic gaming experience. Those who have an NES (or perhaps an emulator) should own and play this game. At least for old time sake.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More classic than the best "Your Mom" joke, March 10, 2006
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Contra (Video Game)
Contra for the NES was one of the very first games that I ever played. I think the only other game I had ever tried at the time was Super Mario Bros. I remember being very confused at why your character died when he jumped on the villains and I remember being angry beyond belief when I couldn't get past level 4. So for you gamers who have yet to play the almighty Contra, I highly recommend either playing co-op with a friend or putting on the 30 lives code. This way, the game will be a much more enjoyable experience. In Contra, it is your duty to kill and destroy everything in your path. Eventually you must destroy the head alien (Red Falcon) in order to save the universe. Along the way you will encounter all of his pets and various other troops who are trying to get in your way.

GRAPHICS- 9/10

Although it was an "8-bit system" the NES usually pushed "8-bit" to its very limit. Games such as "Mega Man 2" and "Mike Tyson's Punch-Out" looked excellent. The graphics in Contra aren't the greatest the system ever made but they certainly are good. I particularly enjoyed the attempt at 3-d in the base levels. Other stages such as "The Jungle" and the winter area featured very nice and detailed environments. The "Alien's Lair" was dark, spooky and looked exactly like one would expect and alien's lair to look like. The enemy character's looked about as good as they probably could have on the NES, as did the two main characters. Only two of the boss characters stood out in my opinion (graphic wise). Those were the big, rock-robot guy and the gross-looking Alien. In the final stage when you first encounter the Alien's head, you will most likely be reminded of the main alien in the "Alien" film series.

SOUND- 10/10

This game features a very memorable soundtrack. A lot of the songs sound like they came right out of an awesome 80s cop movie. From the second your character drops from the helicopter to the last explosion in the game, the music is strong! The gun effects are top-notch for an NES shooter and the explosion sound is exactly like it should be!

GAMEPLAY:

Fun Factor- 10/10

This is obviously where the game shines. You run around, blasting the crap out of the enemies, jumping over things, ducking to avoid enemy fire while shooting at the same time. Some parts of the game deal with timing (for example: the "Energy Zone" stage where you must avoid the laser blasts or else you will die). But, like I mentioned above the difficulty level might take away from the fun factor, so putting the 30 lives code is the way to go. Also, if you have an NES loving friend, get him or her over to your house as soon as you can and put the popcorn in the microwave and then see how far the two of you can make it without the code!

Control- 10/10

The controls to this game are simple. Use the D-pad to move you character around (press down the duck), the A button to jump and the B button to shoot your weapon (in whatever direction you are in). The controls aren't too loose and they aren't too tight. In other words, this game controls like a dream!

Replay Value- 9/10

I have gone through this game 4 times this month (twice on my own with the code and twice with a friend). It is just that fun. I plan to play it all the way through in the near future and when I get good enough I plan to beat it without the code on. This game is addictive beyond belief. I can't see myself ever getting tired of playing this.

GRAPHICS: 9

SOUND: 10

FUN FACTOR: 10

CONTROL: 10

REPLAY VALUE: 9

AVERAGE SCORE: 9.6/10

So as you can see, this is one of my most beloved shooters as well as one of the most beloved shooters on the NES. It gave birth to two incredible sequels, and eventually became a long series. But this is where it all started and if you own any of the "Playstation" titles, and you think those are good...give this game a try and you will forget all about those ones. It is a near perfect game, that can provide you with a challenge but most importantly it is fun! And isn't that the most important thing?
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars awesome, December 29, 2009
A Kid's Review
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Contra (Video Game)
Contra is the best nes game I've ever played especially on multiplayer. It helps you out a lot because there is another player on the screen helping you out killing aliens. I also enjoyed the game a lot more with the konami code so you get 30 lives instead of 3 (The code is up up down down left right left right b a start.) I think I wouldn't have nearly as much fun on the game without the code. Another kool thing is the bosses. They look really wierd and kool at the same time. It seems like the creators thought of ramdom suff and put it all together like another konami game called life force that also super wierd bosses. Overall Contra is totally awesome and I recommend this game to anybody who likes classic and shoot em' up games.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars CONTRA!, December 1, 2013
This review is from: Contra (Video Game)
Contra by far is one of the greatest games ever! I remember spending hours and hours each morning as a 7 year old trying to beat this game,which never happened lol, and once you have played (without a cheat code) you will understand why. As I kept at it though over the next few years before the ps1 came out I slowly learned the tricks and was able to progress much further into the game. I am excited to buy it again and beat it now that it is 15 years later lol.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars GOAT, November 5, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Contra (Video Game)
If you have ever played this game, you know why I gave it a Five Star review. One of the greatest games of all time. Be careful though, playing this on the dual nes/snes system does not allow the Konami code.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best NES games, December 5, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Contra (Video Game)
classic NES game, one of the best, this is a must have for any retro gamer. This game started cheat codes with its iconic up up down down left right left right b a start.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best side scroller ever made, November 15, 2009
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Contra (Video Game)
This game will get my vote for best game on the NES and one of the best games of all time. There is never a dull moment as the enemies are in endless supply. Don't worry with the help of amazing weapons you're up to the task. There are some great upgrades for your gun that are much appreciated in this title. The levels themselves are vastly different from one another and this adds to the fun of the overall game, along with varied enemy types. The best part of this game is the co op. You actually fight with your buddy on the same screen at the same time. Believe me you're going to need the help, because this is one of the hardest games of all time (unless you use the Konami code). The graphics are pretty well done for 8 bit, and the music is looped techno bliss. This is a game that must be in your NES collection.

Presentation- There is only the main menu, no other ones to comment on. The game itself looks great and the variety in level design is amazing for this old of a game. 5/5

Graphics- The variety of enemies is fantastic. You never know what will be lurking as the screen advances. The weapons are also well done, an overall gem to look at. 5/5

Story- There is a story, but it's hard to follow. You are a soldier fighting an alien takeover and you apparently are the only one fighting. The story is never really explained and takes a back seat to the amazing action like in most 8 bit games. 4/5

Game play- This game has some of the most responsive controls in a side scroller ever. You feel you can do anything as there is no lag and the controls are smooth and precise. That feeling also translates over to the multiplayer with no difference in control. The only gripe I have is that when you use up the continues you start at the beginning of the game, and not at the stage you were on. 4.9/5

Lasting Appeal- This game has never gotten old. I can put it in any day and have some fun. My cousin and I enjoy to play the co op and we return to this classic quite often. 5/5

The Verdict- This game is the best side scroller every created, with amazing action, weapons, levels, and responsive controls. This game spawned a plethora of sequels that unfortunately could not live up to the original. I give this game my highest recommendation. 4.8/5
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It doesn't get older, it gets better!, October 28, 2009
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Contra (Video Game)
I have a LOT of fond memories of this game! Even my parents (who have NO interest in video games whatsoever) liked this game to a point. I guess that point was when I would beat it and then play through it all over again! It's THAT good, people! Contra is one of only a hand full of games I can play over and over and not get sick of (The other being FFVII.) My favorite levels were the Base levels. You had to blow up those flashing sensors on the back wall while trying to avoid enemy fire, and if you pressed up on the control pad, your character would get a SERIOUS shock from the high voltage fence! The sensors THEMSELVES would start firing at you if you defeated all the enemies in any area in Base2 (I found that out the hard way.) It makes blowing them up a LOT more challenging, THAT'S for sure! The music for its time was very good and kept you "motivated" throughout the game. The only two places where the music is the same is 'the jungle' stage 1 and 'the hangar' stage 7. Other then those MINOR gripes, the game rocks on all levels. Especially the "fun factor" department! I feel very fortunate to have this game in my possession again. Especially after so many years of inactivity.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I kept dying, but I had fun doing it..., January 9, 2011
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Contra (Video Game)
Contra. If you can think of an old-school shooting game, this would probably stand right on top of your head. Originally hailing from arcades, the leap to NES made the game even more popular. Better yet...has anyone even played the arcade original?

Contra is composed of platform shooting at its finest, hard difficulty, and eight totally fantastic stages! Most of the stages would have a boss at the end, while stages 2 and 4 go into a fake-3D perspective.

Like I said the game is hard. What does that mean? Well, it's HARD. There would be so many frustrating deaths caused by numerous enemies. The deaths are also caused by the fact that you can only get hit once. Several games I reviewed had points docked off for this, but here...I'm just having too much of a blast!

The graphics are amazing for its time, and the music will always be beating in your 8-Bit heart.

What's really awesome about the game is how you get to play co-op with another player! Bill and Lance, kicking robo-butt like anything else in a video game.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars MOST REPLAYED GAME OF ALL TIME!!!, August 13, 2009
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Contra (Video Game)
I've played through this game literally over a THOUSAND TIMES !!! Not kidding When I was younger I would put this game in at least once a day play through it on 1 man every time .Only game I ever mastered to that ridiculus point .I even played through it blindfolded once on a dare.Who says you need eyes to beat a video game?I LOVE THIS GAME!!!! One of the best video games ever made hands down.If you've never played it buy it and a famicom.It'l be the best [...] you'll ever spend.
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Contra
Contra by Konami (Nintendo NES)
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