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|Metal Slug 4|
|Publisher(s)||Playmore Noise Factory|
|Release date(s)|| Neo Geo|
June 12, 2002
|Genre(s)||Run and gun|
|Mode(s)||Single player, 2 player Co-op Online Co-Op|
|Arcade system||Neo-Geo (553 Mbit cartridge)|
|Display||Raster, 304 x 224 pixels (Horizontal), 4096 colors|
Metal Slug 4 (メタルスラッグ4) is a run and gun video game for the Neo-Geo console/arcade platform created by SNK. It was released in 2002 for the MVS arcade platform and is the fourth game in the Metal Slug series. 2 years later, Playmore published Metal Slug 4. This was also the only Metal Slug game that was produced during SNK's bankruptcy, until its sequel was released after SNK was "resurrected" as SNK Playmore.
Metal Slug 4 retains the same gameplay as previous titles, with the addition of some new enemies, bosses, weapons, several new vehicles and a new bonus combo system. It was later ported to Microsoft Xbox and Sony PlayStation 2 as a separate game in Japan and Europe, and along with Metal Slug 5 as a compilation in North America.
A bonus scoring system was added that allows the player to be rewarded depending on how many enemies are killed in the time allotted. The time allotted is determined from the type of emblem that is picked up. A time meter will appear on the top of the screen, and if the player lives through the end of the level, they will be awarded bonus points for badges that represent feats accomplished. Eri and Tarma were replaced with Nadia and Trevor.
One year after the events of Metal Slug 3, the world is trembling under the new threat of a mysterious but deadly cyber virus that threatens to attack and destroy any nation's military computer system. With Tarma and Eri unable to help due to their own assignments in the matter, Marco and Fio are called in to investigate the situation and are joined by two newcomers, Nadia and Trevor. In their investigation, the group discovers that a terrorist organization known as Amadeus is behind the nefarious plot and that they head into battle against Amadeus' forces, hoping to destroy the cyber virus before it gets the chance to wipe out the entire world's military computer system.
Halfway through the game's story mode, the player is confronted by one who they presume to be Morden, however in the final stage they find an underground facility where Terminator - like doubles of Morden are being manufactured. Allen O' Neil (who has appeared numerous times throughout the series) fights the player in this stage for the very last time, and is also revealed to be a machine like the Morden doubles before he is destroyed and the player confronts the leader of Amadeus.
- Double Heavy Machine Guns [2H]: The stronger version of the Heavy Machine Gun [H] in the previous series. Allow players to carry two submachine guns which cause the damage of 1 per shot and with more rapid firing than Heavy Machine Guns. However, the 2Hs are very rare in the game and only have 200 shots like the Heavy Machine Gun and can only fire in four directions.
- Bradley: First appeared in MS2 as an enemy rocket shooting vehicle, it is equipped with powerful rocket shots and a vulcan cannon like the slugs, players can use it after killing the enemy soldier inside it. However, this vehicle has a very short jumping range and crouches much slower than the other vehicles, and will not become temporarily invincible after receiving an attack from the enemy.
- Metal Crow: First appeared in MS1 as the "Melty Honey" under the control of the Rebel soldiers. It will appear with Bradley in stage two if under two players mode. It is equipped with a blade-covered shield that shreds enemies, and also enables it to take five shots before it is destroyed. Also in stage 5.
- Crawler: Mechanical version of the sub-human mutants from Metal Slug 2/X which appears in stage four. Much like the Camel Slug in the previous two games, it provides no protection to the player, but has a slightly better jumping ability and also does not harm the player if it touches a rolling bomb.
- Forklift Truck: It will appear in stage 5 with the Metal Crow. Like the Drill Slug from MS3, it can "jack up" if the player presses the jump button during the onboard in the Forklift Truck. It will stab the enemy with the fork at the front in the player presses the bomb button. Its fork can shred the enemy also. The Forklift Truck does not have a vulcan cannon; rather, the player uses whatever weapon they have. The player is always exposed to enemy attacks.
- Monkey Transformation: In the underground path of stage 1 and the final stage, there are scientists with rifles. These aren't loaded with bullets but a special chemical shot, that transforms characters into gibbons which are rather like the monkey Utan in Metal Slug 3. Players gain a much stronger jumping ability and the ability to hang on the bars over their heads, which saves them from most of the attacks from the enemy, although they are unable to shoot upward while on the bars (they can still shoot in horizontal directions and directly downwards). But they can only fire a small gun which is similar to the Heavy Machine Gun, walk very slowly, and take longer to throw grenades. Players can be transformed back into human form by picking up an antidote dropped by scientists. This transformation is the only one in the series with an animation for returning to human form, in which the player falls asleep as a monkey then promptly wakes up as a human. Players who are hit by the chemical shot while in monkey form will die.
Metal Slug 4 is a product of a joint-venture between both Mega Enterprise, a Korean game publishing and distribution company, and Noise Factory, a Japanese company focusing on creating musical scores.
Metal Slug 4 was positively received by players with users scores of 7.8 for PS2, 7.3 for Xbox, 8.1 for Neo Geo and 8.3 for the arcade versions.