A couple of months back a nice little debate took place on these two games and which one was the better. Again having both been in different polls and come out ontop, I've decided to pit them against one another and tally up the final score. So which will it be: Metal Slug or Elevator Action Returns? Pick one and explain why.
ELEVATOR ACTION RETURNS
Plan B's the safe way, step on ya A-Game, SKY'S THE LIMIT!
Honestly, I'd never played a Metal Slug game until about a year ago when I got the original on the Switch.... and it was ok. I loved the art style, but the game felt a little off. Attacks just didn't seem as responsive as they should be, and that caused me to take a lot more damage that I feel I ought to have. For run n gun games, I feel like you need attacks that fire as fast as your twitch reflexes. I imagine it's probably a thing that was rectified in later games, but I've not bought those yet.
EAR on the other hand is a fantastic arcade game that IS very responsive, and a lot of fun. It doesn't quite have the cartoonish charm of Metal Slug, but the art direction and style fits the cheesy secret agent theme it is going for. I enjoyed the game a lot from start to finish.
Both really good arcade ports, I rate them highly. It's easy to pick a winner for me though.
Elevator Action Returns is a top arcade port, great controls, detailed graphics, and fast paced. It's difficult to master, but really fun to play. An underrated gem.
Metal slug is one of my favourite game series, and the Saturn port is really high quality. Apart from the SNK original on AES/MVS, the best way, amongst many, to play it. The Saturn version has tight controls and is faithful to the Neo Geo game in every way. A little bit of slowdown in places and the usual SNK load times, but the graphics are spot on. A brilliant game and it gets my vote.
The Saturn port of Metal Slug is awful (half the animation missing, the entire game has extreme slowdown, and the backgrounds and sprites move at separate framerates making the graphics jerk around constantly). The controls don't have good response either, but that was like that on the Neogeo too (so was the slowdown, but on the Saturn, the slowdown is much worse).
But it's still a good game, all in all. Just a disappointing port. And no, unlike what the rumours say, it doesn't matter which version of the hardware or the game or the ram cart you use. It always plays the same. I tested it.
I could never get into Elevator Action, it's too slow and methodical and boring. I prefer faster arcade style action. As gimped as the Saturn version is, with the combat school it is more entertaining than EAR. Cheaper too.
the game felt a little off. Attacks just didn't seem as responsive as they should be, and that caused me to take a lot more damage that I feel I ought to have. For run n gun games, I feel like you need attacks that fire as fast as your twitch reflexes. I imagine it's probably a thing that was rectified in later games, but I've not bought those yet.
You are correct. The first game was very stiff and had many different nuances in the controls that they changed in the sequels. They also fixed the slowdowns as well (the 2nd game was extremely slow, but they then re-made it as Metal Slug X, which was fixed). But by those games, you were fighting zombies and mummies and martian invaders and giant enemy crabs with naval cannons mounted on their backs. The military stuff got less and less appearance. Not that they were bad, but the first game has its charm for being predominantly war themed, not movie monster themed.
Back in the 90's the Saturn was the best and most affordable way to play Metal Slug. Having got used to playing the AES version. All I can see is the games flaws. Don't get me wrong there is slowdown in the arcade version, but the Saturn version goes way overboard with it to the point where it effects the overall playing experience. Compared in isolation Metal Slug is the better game, but the fact that EAR is a flawless port to the point that even modern systems have yet to replicate. Means I would much prefer to play EAR on the Saturn.