Friday, October 22, 2010

10 video games that made my life gayer (#5): Gunstar Heroes

I've never been much of a fan of run-and-gun games. You know, games like Contra, Ikari Warriors and Metal Slug.

In fact, the only run-and-gun game I've ever enjoyed is Treasure's Gunstar Heroes. I've enjoyed it a lot, though, so I guess that kind of makes up for my lack of love for the genre as a whole.

I can't imagine I'm alone in my admiration of this Genesis/Mega Drive classic, released in both Japan and North America in the autumn of 1993. After all, it's pretty darn accessible as far as side-scrolling shoot 'em ups are concerned, and it's also less realistic and violent than most of its genre cohorts.

That's not why Gunstar Heroes put a big, stupid grin on my face back in the day, though--and why it still does so today. No, for that I can thank the game's beautiful sprite work, creative level design, mind-boggling boss encounters and unique weapon system. Oh, and it has a wicked (in the good sense) soundtrack.

Was Gunstar Heroes my one chance at finding true love with the run-and-gun genre? I'm starting to think so. That's OK--as Alfred Lord Tennyson once said, "'Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all."

See also: all of the previous '10 video games that made my life gayer' posts


Viewtiful_Justin said...

Maybe I'll have to check this one out. I haven't played it, but only because I am not that great at run-and-gun games. Contra 4 kicked my butt repeatedly.

Bryan Ochalla said...

Well, it's available on the Virtual Console, Justin -- so you could check it out that way. If you want to make sure you don't waste your money, though, you could always try it out on an emulator (if you're open to that, of course).

Viewtiful_Justin said...

Thanks for the info!

Bryan Ochalla said...

You're welcome!