I'm sure many have played at least one game in SNK's awesome shoot 'em up franchise, Metal Slug. But did you know that SNK also created a game that's similar, yet at the same time quite different? They did, and it's named Top Hunter.
You play as the titular Roddy or Cathy (or both simultaneously with a friend) and make your way through a number of stages, starting with four elemental planets, forest, fire, ice and wind, each with two "sections". Each planet is quite beautiful, with, for example, the fire planet having enormous streams of glowing lava in the background, the forest stage having a blowing leaves and the ice stage having a lot of reflecting ice.
The gameplay's standard stuff - make your way to the end defeating the bad guys: yyou can jump on them Mario style or beat them up and throw them. There are a few guns to pick up, and you can also jump into a combat robot, similar to Metal Slug's... well, metal slugs!
It's not just normal, weak grunts headed your way though. Sometimes the enemies hop into their own combat robots or assault you with stronger weapons! Every stage also has a number of minibosses (a buff pirate returns on every planet), and a boss showdown at the end. There are numerous traps, such as boulders, falling walls and firebreathing statues, that will take off a large chunk of your health, so caution is advised! The bosses are usually not too hard and you will figure out how to beat them almost immediately.
A major feature of every stage is that it has two lanes to walk on - one in the foreground and one in the back. This way you can quickly jump to safety on the other side if something nasty's heading your way. Be warned though, because enemies can jump after you most of the time! During boss fights there is usually only one lane. You will have to solve some very small puzzles in some stages, but usually this is nothing more than pushing over a wall or grabbing onto a switch.
The music is quite cheerful, but altogether, nothing very special. You won't really notice it during all the action anyway! The game is not very tough, but remember to watch out for stuff that takes away a ton of health!
If you want a taste of Metal Slug-like action (of which all games were released in a collection on Wii already - so they may not be coming to VC soon), look no further than Top Hunter. Play it with a friend for maximum enjoyment. Or play it alone – it’s still pretty good.