Hardcore to the extreme!
First things first, this game is hard. Its about as hard as the original Contra if not even harder. You can try play the game on easy mode but unless your a real hardcore contra fan who's been playing contra recently, I doubt you'll get much further than Stage 4 on your first playthrough.
OK, there aren't that many levels in the game. Only 9 overall. Make no mistake, these are probably going to be the 9 hardest levels you'll ever play in your life. But its because the game is so hard that makes it so bad ass. Its all classic Contra.
Basically, your a guy, here's your gun, go shoot stuff. Your a one man army and you take on a practically never ending horde of enemy soldiers or robots or whatever the game throws at you. Similar to other shoot em' ups like Metal Slug.
The instant where you start the game and are dropped off by a helicopter, you'll know it, everything about this game just screams old-school. The controls, the weapons, everything's here. They even kept the pseudo 3D corridor levels. The music. You'll hear your classic Contra tunes remixed or else new tunes in the same style. As for the bosses, you'll find the first boss to be practically the same as the one in the original Contra.
Theres also a multiplayer co-op included in the game, which kicks tons of ass. The co-op is virtually the same as single player. But double the Fire Power, double the Lives and double the FUN. Just one thing though, the camera doesn't scroll down so on vertical scrolling levels, if a guy is too slow or a guy is too fast, the guy on the bottom will die.
Outside of the main game, theres a whole mission mode that gets unlocked the first time you beat the game (on any difficulty level). Some of these missions are tough as hell itching you to snap your DS half, but never enough to really make you do it. Basically, theres tons of meat to this game especially if your the type of person who enjoys these kind of games.
Overall this game just rocks. There are plenty of unlockables including the original NES Contra and Super C just to name a few. The game is practically built for Contra fans. It caters almost purely for that group but thats not to say this is a bad game. If you've been itching for a tough as nails old-school game, Contra 4 is your best bet.
Buy It? Rent It? F*** It?