Reviews from

in the past


Holds up surprisingly well for an action game on the NES. It's tough, but it doesn't throw too many cheap shots. Your character handles great, the stages are all distinct in their gimmicks and art design, and the enemy patterns are clear and learnable. I played through solo, but co-op is the way to go.

The Konami Code is super famous has been talked about to death, so these are most definitely well-trodden thoughts, but I like how it functions as training wheels for the beginner player. You can play burden-free and die (almost) as many times as you want while you adapt to the game. Then, once you've got a hang of all the patterns, you can blaze through without it and feel like an absolute champ. Probably unintentional, but brilliant nonetheless.


Everyone knows Nintendo Entertainment System games had a tendency to be overly difficult due to their recent ancestry with arcade cabinet design, and Contra is the best example of the difficulty curve somehow strengthening the appeal of a title. Even a play-through that takes advantage of the now famous Konami code, leaves the player wondering, what if? What if I played the game without the extra lives, what if I didn’t have the continues, what if I was actually feeding quarters into a machine for each mistake? The intensity of the bullet hell that is Contra shines through, and is a compelling play even today.


It's real tough. I played it after Super Probotector so it always felt like a step back to me. Very good though.


The very definition of a classic in both positive and negative ways. Play in co-op with a good friend if you can for a much more fun experience. Fuck Konami


hard as hell but the konami code makes it a lot more accessible. even then, i'd say its enemy patterns are very well-designed and identifiable. definitely one of the better-aged pieces of the NES library. Biggest draw is that the bullets don't contrast backgrounds well in some stages and lead to some undesirable deaths.


Beat it without the code, pussies.


Still a classic to this very day.


hard as hell but the konami code makes it a lot more accessible. even then, i'd say its enemy patterns are very well-designed and identifiable. definitely one of the better-aged pieces of the NES library.


This game felt like the hardest thing ever when I was 12, but you can get the best out of it once you master the controls, not that it won't be any less challenging though.


certified baller if you beat it without the code


One of the few NES games that holds up


Todos saben que este juego es bueno. pero siento que no saben que tan bueno es. A pesar de su famosa dificultad el juego quiere que triunfes, Todos los desafíos están bien pensados y el juego te pone en frente las armas que necesitas para triunfar, es un Gocé descubrir lo lejos que puedes llegar con pura habilidad.


Probably one of my favorite NES games. Though it's famous for its difficulty, it's not incredibly hard. Visually, this game is phenomenal for an NES title. Enjoyable if you have a second player for co-op.


The moment you press start and gain control of your character after booting up Contra and hearing that instantly recognizable 7 note jingle and loud 8-bit explosion sound effect on the title screen, you have essentially played every game this series has to offer and experienced what Contra is all about.

Contra immediately indulges the player's instinct to charge his way through the screen with a sprinting-sommersaulting Rambo inspired sprite that fires unlimited satisfying sounding bullets as a flood of enemies fill the screen ahead of you, which is then immediately contrasted with how absurdly fragile your character actually is when compared to other sidescroller protags, dying with one single hit and having to start all over again after a measily set of 3 lives is depleted.

While these days you have to tip toe around discussing difficulty in games because someone might get offended if you tell them that beating a game with save states isn't the same as beating it without them, it was understood that Contra players who beat the game were divided into 2 camps: the ones who used the 30 lives cheat code, and the ones who didn't. Although playing Contra with the 30 lives code still provides an exciting and engaging experience, and I have to give major props to Konami for normalizing its existence as an alternative, it's only when you start giving a default run a serious try that the beauty of the game unfolds.

The exhiliration and sense of triumph you get out of conquering each stage without a single death, as you get into the zone and start to unveil the matrix behind every jump and bullet, and you defeat the final boss on a Xenomorph inspired last stage, stands at the peak of the art of difficulty that characterizes this era in videogames that so many of us have (joyfully) struggled with. A game that is always within your control, if you decide to actually reach for it.

Contra would go on to have a respectable number of sequels in its catalogue, many that I would even consider better than this first entry, but it's interesting how they all have left the core gameplay mostly untouched and focused their attention mainly on the bombastic action spectacle presentation of the series. Maybe that's because Contra hit a home run on its first try and Konami was wise enough not to mess with the formula, and as it stands 35 years after its release, it is still a fresh and unique 8-bit experience worth going through.


When you push start and you hear that pentatonic guitar riff intro to the Jungle I swear a burst of air comes out of the TV and blows your hair back.


Fun with friends, and one of the few gems on the NES. It created the Konami Code too, which is pretty sick. I don't know how you'd beat this game without it though, I barely beat it with it


Quite difficult, solid run and gun action especially for the time, nothing special nowadays though imo


Probably THEE premier NES third-party title along with Castlevania. I think as an NES owner, it's illegal NOT to have this in your collection. And while several better run-and-guns have come out since, this right here is the grand daddy, and still a killer time.


The gold standard for NES run and guns, Contra is a near-perfect game. The one flaw on its mirror sheen is the overly strict number of lives given to the player, but fortunately the game features a cheat code which fixes this and makes it a very enjoyable experience.


IMO not as hard as people make it out to be, and once you've got it down you can clear it pretty quickly


hard as fuck but good run n' gun


run-n-gun shooty shooty jump shoot


A great early NES game that starts and ends great. My only complaints are that the spread gun completely invalidates every other weapon and that the hangar stage involves a lot of mashing on walls that don't add much to the game other than to annoy you.


The lightning in a bottle of NES games, Contra is on another level when it comes to satisfying gameplay. It's somehow one of the most difficult games on the system, yet also incredibly fair in its fluid controls and massive firepower given to the player. I don't think I'll ever get tired of this game.


So, WatchMojo rated Contra one of the most brutal NES games, and I just finished it in I think under an hour. I almost beat it as a 6 year old actually, I just didn't realize how close I was to the end. Legend of Zelda was MUCH harder. The gameplay is fun and the art style is really what has drawn me to this game over and over through the years, it's absolutely beautiful and all of the art really jumps out at you.