The Continue Screen is the place where the player is given the option continue their game.
After losing all their lives, the player is given nine counts (twenty seconds in Metal Slug 6) to continue their game if they have any credits left. Pressing one of the action buttons will speed up the countdown timer.
A Heavy Machine Gun crate will show up during this time for a quick boost. Note that a living second player is able to pick up the weapon as well. In Metal Slug 6's Easy Mode, and Metal Slug 7/XX's Beginner Mode, the game will grant the continuing player a grenade box instead.
If the player continues, then they are able to select their character within a limited time. The exceptions are:
- In Metal Slug, Marco will always be the first player's character; the same goes for Tarma as the second player.
- After defeating the Hi-Do in Metal Slug 3, the first player's character will become unavailable.
- During the cutscene before Metal Slug 6's final mission, a character is seen falling down alongside the controlled characters. Whoever joined becomes unselectable.
If a player does not continue, the game ends, unless a second player is still alive, then the game continues as usual for the latter player. Managing to hit the Best Tank Busters list will allow them to write their initials before ending the game.
A player can insert credits at any time, and the credit counter will not reset when a Game Over occurs. Certain ports of games (notably the AES conversions) have limited continues where no extra credits can be gained. The MVS version has a setting for continues: turning continues off is an automatic Game Over no matter the amount of credits added.
Depleting the heroes' life meter results in seeing the Game Over screen. There, they can select one of the following options.
- Retry: Restart from the previous checkpoint. In 1st Mission, it takes away ten coins from the coin counter. In 2nd Mission, it removes a retry.
- Save: Makes a temporary save where the player left off and keeps track of any continues left.
- Rescue (2nd Mission only): Views the list of all rescued POWs in the game.
- End: Ends the game.
Once the player runs out of continues, the game immediately goes to the title screen.
In 1st Mission, the player can only continue if they have exactly ten coins to pay (i.e. starting the game with five retries gives the player 50 coins). The collected Rank Medal is also taken away and must be picked up again.
In 2nd Mission, the player earns a retry for every 20,000 point milestone in the mission result screen. The exception is Tequila who has no continues. He instantly goes to the Mission Incomplete screen should he die, however, the player keeps their rescued POWs.
Depleting the heroes' life meter results in seeing the Game Over screen. Only two options exist:
- Continue: Restart from the previous checkpoint.
- Back to Camp: Returns to the main menu.
Any POWs and cards collected are lost and must be picked up again.
Once the player loses all of their health points. Three options exist:
- Continue: Restart from the previous checkpoint.
- Restart: Restart the mission all over from the beginning.
- Exit: Return to the main menu.
Any POWs rescued will be lost, and the player's rating will decrease should they continue.
In Metal Slug Defense's Sortie mode and Metal Slug Attack's Attack, Extra Ops, POW Rescue, and Another Story modes, whenever the player's base has been destroyed, they are given the option to reset the stage with an AP Max in hand for 30 medals or quit to menu. For beginning players (anyone at or below level 20) in Metal Slug Attack, this option is free of charge.
Note: The timer (for ranking) will not reset if they decide to continue.
In any other mode, the game automatically returns to menu.
- A Rocket Launcher crate drops when continuing during the fight with the Tani Oh. This is the only time where a special weapon other than a Heavy Machine Gun is given.
- In the first Metal Slug game, the "CONTINUE" text in the top left/right corner of the HUD display doesn't have a question mark. From Metal Slug 2: Super Vehicle-001/II onwards, the "CONTINUE" HUD display had a question mark.
- In Metal Slug 6 and Metal Slug 7/XX, the phrase "ARE YOU READY?" briefly appears after selecting a character.
- In the Western Xbox port of Metal Slug 3, continuing in single-player mode results on starting the mission from the very beginning rather than on the spot. This does not occur in the Japanese version and in any other port or game in the series.
|Screens||Status Screen | Continue Screen | Game Over Screen | Recaptured Prisoners | Best Tank Busters | Arcade Settings|
|On-Screen Elements||Items | Weapons | Slugs | POW | Characters | Enemies | Military Vehicles | Bosses | Environmental Objects | Civilian Vehicles | Rank Medal|
|Actions||Metal Slug Attack | Vulcan Fix | Transformations | Metallish System | Rush Blaster System | Weapon Stock | Deaths | Invulnerability | Canceling | Super Devil Mode|
|Modes||Combat School | Another Story | Another Mission | Storming the Mothership | Fat Island | Office|