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The Metal Slug franchise made a surprise appearance in the App Store this evening. SNK Playmore has brought a version of the classic game to the iPhone:

"METAL SLUG", the 2D action shooter which has fascinated game fans from all over the world with its beautiful dot pixel art and gaudy action, has arrived on the iPhone for a new type of Metal Slug, "METAL SLUG TOUCH"! It will give gamers great excitement and thrills together with the simple and intuitive controls available only on the iPhone. Handle the versatile armored tank Metal Slug, and give chase to Morden's Army!

Movement is tilt controlled (left/right) while turret rotation is handled by tapping on the left/right side of the screen. This results in your turret moving in the desired direction. Jump and squat movements are handled by swipe control (up and down) and finally, there are two additional on screen buttons: avoid and cannon. Controls of the game are shown through this trailer video.

If that all sounds confusing, it is at first. In the end, I found the primary controls to focus on were the turret rotation and tilt controls. Jumping and squatting came into usage much less, and with unlimited continues, actually trying to dodge enemy fire became were less of a concern. The game only comes with 4 missions, and I ran into a crashing issue that prevented me twice from completing the game. With no auto-save or ability to restart at a later level, this became particularly frustrating. A reboot later, and I was able to make it through the relatively brief campaign and had a reasonable amount of fun during.

In the end, Metal Slug Touch isn't all that bad, but it's also just not all that great either. Meanwhile, long time fans of the franchise seem particularly disappointed with the changes made to the iPhone adaptation (no non-vehicular levels, for example).

App Store Link: Metal Slug, $4.99

TouchArcade Rating

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  • TiredOfMiniGames

    *lol* look at the app store link, it says: Metal GEAR Slug :D

  • Martin C

    Those controls would drive me nuts. Oh well.

  • TiredOfMiniGames

    *lol* look at the app store link, it says: Metal GEAR Slug :D

  • Martin C

    Those controls would drive me nuts. Oh well.

  • http://twitter.com/BulkSlash Bulk Slash

    I love the Metal Slug games, but this sounds terrible. No out of vehicle sections? Utterly bizarre control scheme? What were they thinking? I'm not even going to give this a try it sounds so rushed and lazy.

    • spiffyone

      Actually...it sounds like they put a lot of thought into it.

      The lazy way would be if they just slapped a virtual on screen joystick to the game, or tried to port over the arcade games as is without optimizing it for the platform. SNK Playmore seems to have taken the iPhone/touch platform into account, and that shows the opposite of laziness.

      I think it's not that the control scheme is "complicated", but that we've all been sucking at the teet of dpads/joysticks and buttons for so long that something new is seen as "weird" even when it actually makes more sense considering the platform. It's not a limitation of the platform or the game, really, but a limitation of our own abilities to grasp new paradigms.

  • http://twitter.com/BulkSlash Bulk Slash

    I love the Metal Slug games, but this sounds terrible. No out of vehicle sections? Utterly bizarre control scheme? What were they thinking? I'm not even going to give this a try it sounds so rushed and lazy.

    • spiffyone

      Actually...it sounds like they put a lot of thought into it.

      The lazy way would be if they just slapped a virtual on screen joystick to the game, or tried to port over the arcade games as is without optimizing it for the platform. SNK Playmore seems to have taken the iPhone/touch platform into account, and that shows the opposite of laziness.

      I think it's not that the control scheme is "complicated", but that we've all been sucking at the teet of dpads/joysticks and buttons for so long that something new is seen as "weird" even when it actually makes more sense considering the platform. It's not a limitation of the platform or the game, really, but a limitation of our own abilities to grasp new paradigms.

  • http://yogamen.net YOMAN

    WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOWWWWWW

    i'am true gamer and i can say it was my dream!!!!

  • http://yogamen.net YOMAN

    WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOWWWWWW

    i'am true gamer and i can say it was my dream!!!!

  • http://www.stormchild.net Stormchild

    Looks like Heavy Mach, but with bad graphics.

  • http://www.stormchild.net Stormchild

    Looks like Heavy Mach, but with bad graphics.

  • Finch

    This looks awful. Why would you take something as pure and fun as metal slug and turn it into a half-assed port with bad controls.

    Metal Slug has a D-pad and 3 buttons, there is no reason to not port the original game instead of creating some crap like this.

  • Finch

    This looks awful. Why would you take something as pure and fun as metal slug and turn it into a half-assed port with bad controls.

    Metal Slug has a D-pad and 3 buttons, there is no reason to not port the original game instead of creating some crap like this.

  • Michael

    Has this already been axed from the app store?I don't think this is available in the Australian store! :( Is it still available in other stores?

  • Michael

    Has this already been axed from the app store?I don't think this is available in the Australian store! :( Is it still available in other stores?