Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Demon Front (Arcade)

This game is by IGS, for their PGS arcade hardware, a company and a system both mostly known for their high-quality beat em ups, such as Oriental Legend and the Knights of Valour series. This isn't one of those, though: it's a huge Metal Slug rip-off.
Well, rip-off might be a bit harsh. Everything about the game is very high quality, and it does have a couple of new ideas. But the general feel of the game, as well as some of the weapons (the most blatant being the machine gun and shotgun) are exactly like the Metal Slug games. You go across slightly hilly horizontally scrolling stages, killing tons of one-hit enemies, occasionally stopping for a bigger set-piece type enemy, and there are even litle hidden paths and points items gained by shooting the right parts of the background, just like Metal Slug. One thing they were right to steal is the concept of having really nice 2D graphics. To be extra clear, the graphics themselves aren't stolen, but it's obvious the developers knew they couldn't compete with SNK unless their game looked just as good, and it definitely does. Well, a lot of people might prefer Metal Slug's "everything is dirty and slightly melted" style to Demon Front's "really really nice use of colours"
style, but either way, Demon Front looks great.
As for the original parts, the first is that each character has a little pet flying alongside them. Holding the fire button for a couple of seconds makes the pet do their attack, which is different for each pet, and pressing the third button turns the pet into a forcefield around the player which can take a few hits. It's obviously a lot safer using the pet as a shield than a weapon, and when playing, I've survived longer when using this tactic. Once the forcefield has taken its share of hits though, it disappears and won't reappear until you lose a life. Some brave players might want to try being a little more tactical, using the forcefield right up until the last hit, then turning it back into the
pet and using its powerful attack for a while.
There is also some kind of levelling up mechanic regarding the pet, and you get different kinds of experience from enemies depending on whether you shoot them, stab them or kill them with the pet's attack. The levelling doesn't really seem to have a huge effect on what happens either way, though.
All in all, Demon Front is a pretty great game, and is definitely worth playing, and even if it's not totally original, its general quality makes up for that.

1 comment:

  1. I feel it's pretty mediocre beyond the graphics. The level design is just mindless swarms of enemies, while every stage in the good Metal Slug games is very carefully laid out and orchestrated, playing off of each enemy's unique abilities. You don't get that in DF.