NES – #36 – Super C

History:
I was pretty late to the Contra scene. I’d always heard about the games, but my first experience game from Contra III for the SNES.

Expectations:
Swearing, broken controllers…


Night 1:

Fired the game up for a few minutes after putting Rygar away and, yep, I’m thinking this one’s going in the “best effort” pile. I’d at least like to see the second stage though!


Night 2:

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I picked the game up again late in the morning and actually started to make progress! The rhythm of the game has started feeling good, and I’m actually having a blast playing through it. Stage 1 feels like practice now, with Stage 3 being the actual start of the game. Stage 2 is more of an annoyance than anything, but I like it a hell of a lot better than the top-down stage from Contra 3!

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Stage 3 is a lot of fun for me, if not a little painful. Enemies start coming from both ends and situational awareness needs to be cranked up to 11.

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Beating the last boss was a bit of a turning point for me, as I realized I wasn’t playing a run’n’gun shooter, but rather a full fledged bullet hell! I play those differently, and once I started treating this game as such, the Stage 3 boss just fell apart.

Stage 4 sucks, I don’t really enjoy it at all and it kind of gives off a Stage 2 vibe in terms of execution. However, I did find something to make it a little more manageable…

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Yep, co-op in Super C is a god damned joy. My brother was visiting for the long weekend and we managed to make it to Stage 5 before cashing in. If we can find the time, tonight could be the night! This game may not go in the best effort pile after all…

Later…

My brother and I ended up making it all the way through to Stage 7…

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Stage 6 boss is nightmare fuel… Anyway, Stage 7 was where my brother finally ate it and I had to death skip through half of it, wasting about four lives. Somehow, I was able to take down the 7th boss without dying once!

Sadly, after that feat, Stage 8 did me in…

After that, we couldn’t quite get our mojo back and went to bed. Unfortunately, that was his last night in town, and I’m not so sure if I can pull this game off on my own. Next night will be my last on this game regardless, so we’ll see what I can do!


Night 3:

Well this was it.

I came home to a slightly less noisy home and after dinner I gave it a solo attempt. At this point, I had that blister forming on the ball of my thumb that I haven’t had since I was a child, and my hand was starting to cramp from holding the controller so tight, but I sucked it up and pressed on.

The game gives you two continues for three total attempts, and every so many thousand points you get an extra life. My objective was to make it to Stage 5 without needing to use a continue. That didn’t happen… I was off to a bad start from the get-go, dying twice on Stage 1, and getting my first game over in the beginning of Stage 3. From there, though, I made it all the to Stage 8 with no continues left…

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I made it to the home stretch, the falling ceiling section… and died. The controller may or may not have flown a few feet and I decided I’d put it away until after the kids were put to bed and I had a more comfortable atmosphere.

45 Minutes Later…

The quietness (and not having children trying to ride me) paid off. My first death didn’t come until Stage 2’s midway point because I was being an idiot. I was able to hold on to my first continue all the way through Stage 6, which was slightly infuriating as I don’t think I’ve ever had worse RNG with those damned floor mouths!!! They alone cost me three lives, but after I made it to the boss corridor it was smooth sailing.

Stage 7 went from being a nightmare to being incredibly easy once I figured out how to get past the monster-spawning plant vases without dying, allowing me to make it to the boss WITH the spread gun, making him incredibly easy.

Having the spread gun all the way through Stage 8 and identifying the monster spawners early (and those rapid turret things before the ramps) made the stage almost trivial. A stupid mistake on the final boss cost me a life and my weapon but…

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Conclusion:
Holy. Crap. I beat a Contra game! My thumb is killing me but it’s worth it. Super C was incredibly fun to play, and while also incredibly difficult it was a difficulty that could be learned and mastered. I’m not at all saying I’ve mastered the game, only that with enough practice it could be done! I thought for sure this was going to be a best effort title, instead it proved to be very fun and satisfying.

Play it Again?
Probably definitely. I almost feel like it’s some sort of party trick that I can beat this thing… Also it’s just plain fun, and a good way to satisfy my shooter fix.

Super C

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