"Goin' Commando"

Captain Commando wasn't the most original game by Capcom, the gameplay was pretty much plucked from “Final Fight” and like that game suffered from the repetitive and slow paced play which stopped it from being anything close to a classic. It introduced to us the character of Captain Commando and his pals and threw us on an adventure to stop an alien drug lord from taking over the world (or some crap like that). The game didn't hit fame and passed through the world relatively quietly, it was ported onto the SNES but it wasn't Capcom's greatest achievement.

It gave us the ability to play one of four characters; you could play as the hero Captain Commando, who could throw fire from his sleeves and cause the ground to fill with electricity. As any decent super hero does, the Captain took his group of sidekicks to aid him with in his quest. We have Mack, a mummy who has a knack for knives and has ability that makes him spin like a spinning top . Ginzu is a ninja, taking the role of the best character; he runs like the wind and in his hand, he holds a sleek sword adept for slicing foes in half. Last and least was Baby Commando, a super smart baby who uses a robot to help him walk and fight.

You take our heroes through a variety of locations, packed with scummy guys dressed in artic jackets, prostitutes with electric whips and guys with big guns. After starting off in the bum area of town, you'll proceed to a dinosaur museum curiously filled with more prostitutes. Other locations include a laboratory, with a mad scientist complete with a monster creation, a carnival filled with even more artic clothed goons. A marine base is another area the Captain and his comrades will have to sweep clean of scum, along with an oriental Ninja house. After conquering these areas amongst others you ascend to the stars to battle Scumocide in a duel to end.

Aside from your characters attacks you can also pick up a small variety of weaponry to assist in you in your war against scum. A variety of guns are at your control, if you come across any lying around or if you destroy an enemy carrying one. Firstly you can pick up a grenade launcher that sets enemies ablaze and a machine gun comes in handy for sweeping the area clean. Alongside these helpful assists is the daddy of ‘em all, the giant robot. These are found on a few levels and at first you'll find that they'll be used against you but with a quick kick you can knock the bad guy off and ride upon it yourself. This robot packs a strong punch on baddies despite being a bit plodding and it can run out of health quite swiftly if a tonne of baddies gang up on you. The damage it does is high but it goes pretty slow, however when against bosses it is handy, mainly because most of them are as sluggish as you are.

The bosses in the game are quite original and interesting, most of them are twisted biological mutated beasts although a few are a little different. One looks like a skinnier version of Blanka equipped with a nice machine gun, others are a oversized Samurais with very big swords and some are just oversized transsexuals that are scary to look at. Finally, Scumocide awaits you in his ship for the last confrontation. He is a gigantic devilish creature that you have to lock horns with for the games succession. He is one tough cookie to defeat and will take a long time and lot of coins, especially if you're playing alone

Visually, Captain Commando is quite smooth and glossy. The character sprites are pretty small and they have little detail. They look bright and reasonably clear but since they are quite small they look about average. The four main characters are quite well done, not including Mack who is a purple and orange blob. Of course enemies tend to be pallet swaps so there seems to be little variety. The artic-coated guys look really blurry while the wrestling guys look really good in comparison, with nice detail and smooth animation. It's a real mixed bag for bad guys; some look pretty good while the others look average to the say the least. Bosses, on the other hand are always really well done and have great animation and detail. The characters Blood and Mushashi look great and have immaculate detail as well as the above qualities.

Captain Commando can get horribly repetitive after a few levels and this is one real factor that really hinders the gameplay. The actual game is quite short but it seems a lot longer because you are constantly doing the same thing over and over again and there is little incentive to spend a lot of money here because it is just gets mind-numbing after level five. If you have a friend to play with then the replay value is increased a little bit but if you are lonesome then it gets dull fast. There are so many games of the genre that are way may more fun to play, alone or with a friend like The Simpsons or Teenage Mutant Hero Turtles but Captain Commando is a strain to play. It's a game you could spend a small amount of cash in, maybe play for ten minutes or so but after that you'll never cash in again.

Reviewer's Rating:   3.0 - Fair

Originally Posted: 03/23/11

Game Release: Captain Commando (US, 12/31/91)

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