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Super Probotector: Alien Rebels (Contra 3: The Alien Wars) (Super Nintendo) Review

Review for Super Probotector: Alien Rebels (Contra 3: The Alien Wars) on Super Nintendo - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

Well what can we say? The original Contra and its sequel were two of the biggest and most defining games on the NES. Nearly everyone who had a NES had one or the other (or often both). They had there reasons of course, the best game of their genre, people knew that in time there would be another...

Many still consider Contra 3 the best of its type after TEN YEARS! That's quite an achievement. It is truly a 2D shooter like no other. So many unique features make this game outstandingly, brilliantly amazing, that I could go on for days, but I won't. Anyway, here go's let's get down to business. To start things off, the third game in the series takes place a few hundred years into the future. Red Falcon, the alien invader from the first two games, returns once again, trying to conquer the plant and all that. The descendants of the original heroes must take the place of their ancestors to whip some alien butt. Their journey will be long and tough, leading them through a ravaged futuristic city, to eventually end up at Red Falcons hive. Of course if you are a NES or SNES fan, you will already be aware of the vast number of titles like this available. All of which are very similar; they are all in the future, being attacked by aliens. A hero or two with an arsenal of 40,000 rushes out to meet them, and voila, you have one of the most copied games of any genre. So what is it that makes this one so special?

Screenshot for Super Probotector: Alien Rebels (Contra 3: The Alien Wars) on Super Nintendo - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

The first thing you will notice is just how much is going on the whole time. The screen is never empty there are always enemies somewhere trying to extinguish your life force. There are of course a wide variety of enemies scattered throughout. Starting off with the default grunt, which come in multiple forms as well, they have different weapons and are instantly recognisable from there colour. For example the basic, basic grunt doesn't even fire at you he just runs around holding his gun, another throws grenades at you then there are the likes of snipers that hide on the tops of buildings trying to pick you off. Once you've played for a little while the next big thing you will notice are the Bosses and Sub Bosses. There are LOADS of these, all are very challenging and have their own strengths and weaknesses you must discover if you hope to win. To give you an idea of just how frantic these battles are, we'll describe one here for you. Try and imagine this; You run into a confined area where two BIG robots are located the door shuts and you are sealed in with them, one starts charging at you and another stands still and just shoots the for the hell of it . The other robot is closing in, what to do? Aha the walls are climbable, and then shimmy across the ceiling, but what's this robot's can jump too! Plus they can hang off the ceiling like you. So as your running around trying to avoid all the enemy fire, your supposed to firing back too, and while you are you cant run (if your climbing) which means your likely to be hit. Then just to top it all off, if you actually manage to defeat them, the room starts being pulled apart at the back by two massive hands, and guess what a GIANT robot appears. He also requires a brand new way to defeat him!

Screenshot for Super Probotector: Alien Rebels (Contra 3: The Alien Wars) on Super Nintendo - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

So it's far from a calm game. You always have to be aware of what's going on around you, as well as your health. One good point of the game though is you have infinite ammo on all your weapons, except bombs. Bombs are activated by pressing the A button, it release a large energy field that destroys everything on screen, but must be used sparingly as you don't get very many. Back to the guns, you fire with Y, and this can just be held down for a continuous barrage on the enemy. So what are the weapons I hear you ask? Well being a futuristic game there basically what you would expect, but a LOT better. The default weapons fires little balls of energy in a straight line but can be fired in all up to eight directions (including diagonals). However the real fun starts with the heavy weaponry. To collect a new weapon you have to shoot the little machines that fly overhead, they drop them and you pick 'em up. They come in the form of a little eagle shaped badge with a letter on it. The letter tells you what you'll be getting, for example S stands for Spread, which fires three times as many energy balls as the default weapon, and in three times the amount of directions. H stands for Homing Missiles, which do what you would expect, and are probably THE most useful weapon in the game, (especially when your on a boss and don't know where your supposed to be firing). Another interesting feature is the ability to carry two weapons at the same time! In it's time this was the first game to include such a unique idea. A quick bash of the X button will change it for you, it is often imperative to change guns on certain bosses, if you want even a slight chance of winning. You keep a gun until you get hurt, because there is no ammo limit you could use one gun for the whole game, but judging by the difficulty of the game, playing through without getting hurt is EXTREMELEY unlikely.

Screenshot for Super Probotector: Alien Rebels (Contra 3: The Alien Wars) on Super Nintendo - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

When we said it was difficult we weren't lying either. This is easily one of, if not the most challenging 16-bit games of all time. There is no saving, so you must complete the game in just one go! This game will test anybody's gaming abilities, to complete this is quite a feat on it's own, but then once you do you get to play through again on, wait for it... HARD MODE. You heard, you were playing on easy the first time, if you found it difficult the first time round, you haven't seen anything yet. Unlike many games, the difficulty doesn't ruin the experience, not at all. In fact if anything it increases playability, easy games get boring, but you'll find yourself coming back to this even today. It really is that good, replay value isn't inserted in the game with the likes of secrets or side quests, and the game itself does it. It's just so fun to play. You probably know what the gameplay will be like, good old run-jump-shoot, but with all the details like weapons and MASSIVE bosses, it isn't quite so simple. Also the game is setup in a rather odd fashion. You start off on a normal side-scrolling level with some bosses and the like, but then after that you move onto an Ariel view level, where you must destroy a certain number of enemy shooting posts before you can continue. Then you get to face some of the games BIGGEST bosses, before moving back to a run-jump level. This continues throughout the whole game, adding a sense of depth not evident in many other games. The normal levels are probably the most fun. You can duck under attacks from enemies on the same height of scenery as you. However this will make you vulnerable to both air attacks, and dumb-ass robots that run into you. So there is a tactical element there too, also once a power up falls to the floor, you have to choose whether the gun you have now is actually better and so don't pick it up, or if the gun you have now is pretty bad, to pick it up before your swarmed with enemies.

Screenshot for Super Probotector: Alien Rebels (Contra 3: The Alien Wars) on Super Nintendo- on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review


That's right, ten out of ten. Perfect in every way you look at it. Never boring, and only ever annoying if your not good enough, and find it too difficult.


The detail, (if you have time to look) is exquisite, the bosses especially, but scenery and backgrounds too.


Pretty standard futuristic adrenaline rushing background music, With some great explosions and other effects.


Tough one that. If you're absolutely amazing at this game and can finish it in your first go, or something stupid like that, then maybe it's not so long, but for the rest of us humans the difficulty will mean it will take AGES to complete.

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 9 out of 10

Exceptional - Gold Award

About this score
Rated 9 out of 10

It's hard to express in words the excellence of this game, pure enjoyment from the very first level, to the very last boss. You just have to play this for yourself, NOW.

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    Also known as

    Super Probotector: Alien Rebels






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    C3 Score

    Rated $score out of 10  9/10

    Reader Score

    Rated $score out of 10  9/10 (5 Votes)

    European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

    Reader comments - add yours today Comments on this Review

    i've been having problems getting in since monday. tonight seems to be really bad for some reason, took me about 10mins and several hundred refreshs to get in.

    Senior ModeratorStaff Member

    We'll be back and running full steam soon enough! :Smilie

    Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
    Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

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