7.5
Our overall verdict "Good"

The Metal Slug franchise has gained a lot of fans since it rolled into arcades and onto console in the late 90s. SNK has had no qualms about bringing Metal Slug to mobiles either, but last week they dropped a new game by the name of Metal Slug Defense. It was not quite what fans expected, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing…

Metal Slug Defense is not your typical Metal Slug game as SNK has turned to the “Castle Defense” mechanic for this one. You and your opponent will have bases set on opposite sides of the screen and whoever manages to take out the others base first wins. It’s a simple concept, and it works surprisingly well in Metal Slug Defense oddly enough.metal.slug.defense-3

While the gameplay is straightforward, you are able to activate a unit’s special ability by tapping them as they sprint across the screen. As for the units, there are a lot of them and you’ll recognize a lot of familiar faces from the Metal Slug franchise. Marco Rossi, Eri Kasamoto, Fio Germi and Tarma Roving all make appearances ant there are countless other units and vehicles to use. That’s a good thing as you’re going to need every last one of them…msg-1

Metal Slug Defense has two modes of play with Sortie which is the campaign mode and Wi-Fi vs. which lets you duke it out with folks online. Sortie has you take on missions set across the globe and also makes grinding a little more pleasurable by throwing POW rescues into the mix. You’ll probably ignore them at first, but you’ll appreciate them later when the game is kicking you in the teeth.

The multiplayer aspect of the game works, but the matchmaking systems is busted at the moment. I had no problem getting into a game, but was EXTREMELY overpowered 90% of the time starting out. I’m sitting on a 2-19 record due to this, but things “seem” to be evening out now that more players are in the game. That said, it doesn’t stop people from dropping out on you while you’re winning.msg-5

Last but not least, we come to the dreaded in-app purchases. As Metal Slug Defense is a freemium game, there is premium currency in the form of medals. The medals unlock the cooler items in the game and while there are no “free offers” to complete, you can earn some through playing.msg-2

I’ve managed to pick up around 80 or so thus far which has landed me some powerful units. The currency prices aren’t awful if you want to spend a few bucks. There’s also an energy gauge to deal with, but I haven’t really had any issues with it for the most part. You have plenty of energy and I’ve been able to play for hours on end without having to break.metal.slug.defense-4

Metal Slug Defense was quite the surprise when it was released last week and I’ve honestly been shocked at how much time I’ve spend with the game over the weekend. I’m not the only one as the player base has jumped and online matches seem to be getting a bit more even now.

It may have not been what you expected, but Metal Slug Defense is a pleasant surprise that’s well worth a look if you’re in the mood for some retro fun. You can pick up MSD for free on Google Play and on the App Store.