Metal Slug: The Ultimate History Is A Very Impressive Book

Illustration for article titled iMetal Slug: The Ultimate History/i Is A Very Impressive Book

When the folks at Bitmap Books offered to send me a copy of Metal Slug: The Ultimate History, I was picturing something much slimmer than the massive, 452-page tome I received. Who knew SNK’s cartoonish run-and-gun shooter series had such a rich and colorful history?

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Officially licensed by SNK, Metal Slug: The Ultimate History walks fans of the series through each game in the storied series, from its 1996 Neo-Geo debt forward. It opens with a written history, then launches into a more artbook-style presentation, a visual walkthrough of each game in the series with captions, comments, and tips.

Illustration for article titled iMetal Slug: The Ultimate History/i Is A Very Impressive Book
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The images are printed with special Pantone ink. They leap from each page. Screenshots are rich and vibrant; they feel more like memories of playing the Metal Slug games and static images. The full-color box art is as vivid as ever.

Illustration for article titled iMetal Slug: The Ultimate History/i Is A Very Impressive Book

The back of the book features interviews with series creators, including Andoh Kenji and Takeshi Okui, who’ve never spoken about the series publicly. SNK worked closely with Bitmap Books in creating Metal Slug: The Ultimate History, giving them unprecedented access to creators and artwork.

Illustration for article titled iMetal Slug: The Ultimate History/i Is A Very Impressive Book
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Metal Slug: The Ultimate History is exactly what it says on the cover. There will never be a Metal Slug history as comprehensive, colorful, or heavy as this one.

Kotaku elder, lover of video games, keyboards, toys, snacks, and other unsavory things.

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DISCUSSION

conker1985
Conker1985

I’m not an SNK fan by any means, but I still remember my first encounter with Metal Slug when one of my local bowling alleys setup a cabinet some 25+ years ago.

I was blown away by the wonderfully cartoonish style and detailed animation juxtaposed with fairly (at the time anyway) graphic violence. The games were frustrating quarter sinks, but I enjoyed just watching the short preview snippets all the same.