As many people know SNK released their very first Metal Slug game back in ’96 for the Neo Geo MVS in arcade centers. While the original Metal Slug game looked impressive in terms of both gameplay and graphics it came out during the mid 90’s where people began showing interest in 3D video games that appear on the PS1 or N64. There were games such as the Tekken trilogy that were big attraction in arcade centers since the fighting genre was increasing in popularity throughout the 90’s decade. Even though, the 2D side scrolling run and gun genre of gaming was popular during late 80’s-early 90’s by the mid 90’s it started to decline in popularity; maybe with the exception of the MegaMan X series which started on the SNES during 1993. However, Metal Slug ’96 was a game that could have been more popular than it was if were released during the early 90’s.
To say that Metal Slug ’96 was overshadowed during the mid 90’s in arcade centers worldwide would be considered an understatement at this point. While there are many casual gamers that have heard of Metal Slug ’96 along with the rest of the series it may have just been seen as another title in arcade centers. However, there so many people are oblivious to the fact that Metal Slug was one of SNK’s most high profile Neo Geo games outside of the KOF series. As far as quality is concerned the Metal Slug series could easily give the MegaMan X series a run for its money. While the MegaMan X series is more popular the Metal Slug series has seemingly got better with each sequel. It should also be noted that Metal Slug ’96 had limited exposure because it never appeared on any Neo Geo home consoles either. Even if Metal Slug ’96 appeared on Neo Geo AES or Neo Geo CD both consoles were very expensive following their respective releases. While Neo Geo AES was priced at $649.99 following its release Neo Geo CD was approximately $399 following its US release.