Who did it?
This particular version was developed by M2 as part of the 3D Classics series for the 3DS and published by Sega. The original Mega Drive / Genesis version was created by Treasure, who was later responsible for classics like Sin and punishment, Radiant Silvergunand Ikaruga.
What is the premise?
It’s actually quite simple – you play as one of two members of the Gunstar family, defenders of the planet Gunstar 9. Your older brother has been kidnapped by a dictator, and you need to rescue him and prevent the release of an apocalyptic force from the moon.
Remember, this is 1993—the simpler and more extraordinary, the better.
Why should I play this?
It’s Flippin’ Gunstar Heroes, for god’s sake, one of the best Mega Drive/Genesis games out there ever made.
OK, different versions of Gunstar Heroes are available through other methods — including Nintendo Switch Online with the optional Expansion Pack — but, well, they don’t have stereoscopic 3D. Ported by M2, who have been responsible for some of the best ports in the business for years, bringing collections such as Castlevania Anniversary and The previous Castlevania collection, Contra Jubilee collectionand Collection of mana for Switch, you know this re-release is just pure quality for that reputation alone.
This version also features Gunslinger Mode, which lets you start with each individual weapon type and allows you to switch between free and fixed fire modes at any time. And if you find the mayhem too much, there’s also a Mega Life Mode that doubles your health.
However, ignoring all the extras, you’re looking at possibly the best version of one of Sega’s best video games ever on a 16-bit system. The visuals and music are stunning, and the action is still as addictive as ever. Co-op is also available in this version via local 3DS play. It doesn’t look like a game from 30 years ago at all. Gunstar Heroes was Treasure’s debut video game, and what a great debut it was.
How much does it cost?
$5.99 / £4.49 / 599 euros in the 3DS eShop. Yes, that’s right – here in the UK it’s less than five. What an absolute bargain for a classic.
We’ll be back soon with another 3DS or Wii U eShop recommendation as part it “Countdown” series.. Let us know below if you already have this in your collection and share your thoughts. Also, feel free to nominate other games – we may highlight those as well in the coming days.