Metal Slug 5 (メタルスラッグ 5) is a run-and-gun video game for the Neo-Geo console/arcade platform developed by Noise Factory and SNK Playmore. It was released in 2003 for the MVS arcade platform and is the last Metal Slug game released for the Neo Geo.
The game was later ported to Microsoft Xbox and Sony PlayStation 2, as a standalone game is Japan and Europe, and along with Metal Slug 4 as a compilation in America and South Korea. It was also ported to PC specifically for a Korean release. It is also part of the Arcade Archives for Xbox One, Windows 10, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch.
A special disc that contains deep and intricate secrets about the Metal Slug project is stolen by a mysterious group called the Ptolemaic Army, whose specialty lies from within archaeological excavation and espionage. Marco and Tarma of the Peregrine Falcon Strike Force follow in hot pursuit against the group and in the process are joined by Eri and Fio of SPARROWS. Together once more, the quartet investigate the shrouded objective of the Ptolemaic Army.
It was hinted by the developers that this game is meant to be one of the last ones in the series' chronology, after Metal Slug 6 and Metal Slug 7/XX. However, that doesn't mean the series has a finale yet.
Differences from previous games
- The player can perform a slide-dash by pressing the jump button while crouching. The move is exclusive to this game.
- "Fat mode" is the only remaining modifier.
- The Flame Shot has been omitted.
- The Metallish System from Metal Slug 4 has been abandoned.
- The Rebel Army, Donald Morden, and Allen O'Neil are nowhere to be found in this game. Rather, one fights armies of veiled terrorists, special forces, and assorted mecha named the Ptolemaic Army. As a result, this game lacks much of the sense of humor of its predecessors. However, most of the new enemies are edits of the Rebel soldiers' AI, and while many feature completely new animations, some simply use edited sprites from previous titles.
- There are no zombies, mummies, aliens or other such supernatural creatures, although the final boss is a large demon.
- Unlike its predecessor Metal Slug 4, which reused many of the backgrounds and sprites from the previous games, Metal Slug 5 incorporates a wealth of new environments, backgrounds, and unique bosses.
- Eri and Tarma return as playable characters with Trevor and Nadia being omitted entirely.
- There are cutscenes at various points throughout the game, rather than one or two at the end, giving the game a hint of progression of plot.
- The soundtrack as a whole uses a heavy metal theme. This includes the remixed versions of "Final Attack", "The Military System", "Carry Out", and "Gravestone".
New vehicles and Slugs
- Slug Gunner: The ultimate evolution of the SV-001 and LV Armor. The Gunner fires a machine gun, a chassis-mounted cannon, and can punch enemies with a close-combat exploding metal spike "cannon". The Gunner can perform a mid-air jump like that of the LV Armor. The Gunner is also able to transform from a walker into a tank, and can move slightly faster in addition to running over infantry. However, the Gunner is slow, takes a while to turn, and only has a 90-degree firing arc (180-degree while in the air).
- Slug Mobile/TIAF 660: A car with a 360-degree Vulcan cannon attached. Its secondary fire is an oversized Enemy Chaser. Of particular interest is that the player cannot eject from the vehicle, meaning they'll die when it's destroyed, and will subsequently respawn in a new Slug Mobile.
- Augensterm: A giant squid-like walker with two legs tethered to the floor and two to the ceiling; pressing the jump button raises or lowers the cockpit. The Augensterm is armed with 360-degree firing Vulcan cannons and a harpoon gun.
- Black Hound "SV-001/III" (Mission 1 secret mini-boss)
- Metal Rear (Mission 1 boss)
- Shooting Ray (Mission 2 boss)
- Wall Crawler (Mission 3 boss)
- Sand Marine (Mission 4 boss)
- Mammoth Tower (Final Mission mini-boss)
- Evil Spirit Incarnate (Final Mission final boss)
- Compared to other games the series Metal Slug 5 features a lot a lot of unused data in its assets, including graphics, stages, characters, bosses, items and codes. Based on this, assumptions and educated guesses have arose, pointing it to be sort of incomplete, rushed to meet release deadlines.
- In the Arcade flyer of the game (seen below), there seems to be some other versions of the enemy robots or vehicles than those included in the game; for example, the one below Tarma is a different variant that features what seem to be either fins or wings. Just as the many material related to this game, this may suggest that initially there were a large amount of enemy mechs but didn't make it into the final release.
- In the Xbox promotional flyer, below Marco and over to the right, there are two characters occupying the TIAF660. These two are nicknamed by fans Achilles and Tabomba although only the former has sprites and code in the game (and is also unused).
- Concept art for the bosses orders the missions as 3-4-2-1-5 (e.g. the Wall Crawler is listed as the Mission 1 boss). This suggests that the first four missions were shuffled around due to deadlines, difficulty, or in-game story reasons.
- The Flame Shot is the only weapon to not return, but the sprites of various Ptolemaic soldiers burning to death exist. The Flame Shot is present in the game's code and is accessed by using debug and entering Area 3:9.
- The Guerrilla Soldiers' scarfs share the same color palette as the game's blood. Turning the blood off will change their scarves from red to white.
- Only in the standalone PS2 and Xbox versions of Metal Slug 5 can the cutscene with the Natives be skipped.
- Despite the various unused assets, sprites do make appearances in later games. The Stone Turtle debuts in Metal Slug Revolution and Ptolemaios is the main leader of the Ptolemaic Army in Metal Slug Attack.
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