This is the third match between the venerable Neo Geo and impetuous PGM, also known as the Polygame Master. In previous conflicts, the SNK system taken the lead thanks to the experience - and talent - of its programmers. In fact , the machine is facing a strong rival with this one... The IGS machine uses the same architecture and processors as the MVS, but with a hardware six years younger: ie developing a pretty much higher power ! Demon Front is, in the eyes of the aficionados, one of the best titles available on the PGM: it is a run'n'gun with sublime graphics , borrowing a lot of ideas from Metal Slug and still having a few original things . .. I chose to confront Metal Slug 3 rather than 4, even if it came out the same year as DF; in fact, the episode directed by the Korean Mega is - by far - the worst one of the saga. It would therefore not be honoring one nor the other to highlight Metal Slug 4 ! So here is Demon Front facing the champion of SNK, I named : Metal Slug 3!
The technical superiority of PGM allows Demon Front to oppose a fierce competition to Metal Slug 3! Whether on the resolution or the number of colors displayed, IGS's baby holds a candle to the legendary SNK run'n'gun. DF's backgrounds offer more depth and finesse than its rival, but also more colors... which means we are dealing with a real gem of 2D! However and against all odds, MS3 wins on the graphics part for two reasons: not only its sumptuous sets are much more varied than those of Demon Front (among others due to the various passages in stages), but above all the sprites of the game are more beautiful and sophisticated. The enemy bestiary is way more varied, not to mention the plethora of vehicles still adding to the table.
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Metal Slug 3 and Demont Front are rivaling fluidity and decomposition, it's a real treat on both sides! Bosses are huge, action intense... Hard to decide who takes the lead on the animation, you got it. In DF, I could strictly not detect any slowdown from beginning to the end of the game (playing two simultaneously), which is a little better than what does MS3, which concedes some (rare) framerate drops during very charged phases when two players cooperate. On the other hand, SNK's soft is further in the decomposition and animated details, but also on enemies here and there in different levels ... So it's a draw in this chapter.
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Metal Slug 3
If different melodies and sounds of games of the Metal Slug saga are in memories of every gamer (Heavy Machine Gun!!!), I'm willing to bet that Demon Front's soundtrack won't be too much remembered! The sound effects are mostly inspired by MS without great originality or any improvement. As for the musics, it goes from commonplace to unpleasant... so it's clear that IGS musicians were not really inspired that day. Metal Slug 3, rich from the experience gained from previous opus, offers a plethora of sounds and voices perfectly crafted, in addition to themes of excellent quality... that allow him to take a clear advantage here.
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Our two run'n'gun offer five long and challenging stages! Count more than fifty minutes to overcome Demon Front, against almost an hour to Metal Slug 3. There are four different characters to select from in each, but the SNK title takes advantage on the variety of weapons (eighteen against only six total), the presence of vehicles (twelve different ones, not bad!) and a multitude of paths in levels: fourteen total for the first four stages. Demon Front opposes to its rival facts mechanics good enough to bring back players to the game once finished (scoring, multiple Bosses..) but MS3 responds with the same kind of arguments - plus all the rest.
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This episode 3 honors the past episodes, repeating and improving the gameplay foundations laid by his predecessors. Superior to his rival on the number of available weapons and the presence of vehicles in the game, it also offers a better variety in action, thanks to the different possible paths and a few "shoot em up" phases, other "platform" ones, diversifying the action. To the famous scoring based on hidden items and prisoners to recover in MS, Demon Front opposes a combo system pretty well thought and taking, based on the timing sequence of enemies killed , and the management of "Pet". Each of our heroes is accompanied by a small elemental, which attack can be triggered by depressing A. This somehow replaces the bombs in Metal Slug. Our Pet can level-up if we made good use of it, thereby increasing his firepower. There are also many scoring items to recover, background elements to destroy and many hidden things to discover. Many good features, but facing the incredibly addictive gameplay of Metal Slug 3 is not an easy task: more fun to play, addictive scoring system, multiple paths, hidden bonuses, surprises, winks to movies and other videogames... and of course the controls which are perfect.
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IGS made a good arcade game here: Demon Front is a remarkable clone of Metal Slug, although it reminds a little Top Hunter on certain aspects. It's not fanciful to regard this as the flagship of the Taiwanese team, as it's still a good notch above the other realizations of the firm. Nevertheless, it fails to unscrew Metal Slug 3 from his throne: its gaming qualities prove not good enough to compete with its rival, which is one of the best run'n'gun of all time. Anyway, Demon Front is still a very good title of the genre, and its remarkable graphics are probably what we will remember most.
Metal Slug 3