Contra, also known as Probotector and Gryzor outside of the USA, was a 1987 game released by Konami. In this game, the user controls one of two military commandos: Bill “Mad Dog” Rizer or Lance “Scorpion” Bean. The two are sent on a mission to eliminate a terrorist group called the Red Falcon Organization who, believe it or not, has plans to take over the earth (in some versions of the game, such as in the USA, the Red Falcon is an alien organization). The goal of game play is to reach the core of the enemy base. The game could be played solo or in cooperative mode.
The player would move through up to 10 different areas of the game, using a rifle with unlimited ammo. There were a number of weapon upgrades, such as a more power machine gun, a laser gun, a shot gun, fireball gun, rapid fire, and barrier shield that provided temporary invulnerability. There were two different stage views of the game. There was the standard left to right scrolling area, and then a first person angle where the player had to maneuver through a 3D maze.
Like many of these games, Contra was successful enough to warrant a released on just about every home console and PC platform you could think of (NES, ). An arcade sequel, called Super Contra, was released in 1988. Post the 1980’s, a tone of Contra spin-offs were released on contemporary consoles, with titles like Operation C, Contra III (the Alien Wars), Contra Force, Contra Hard Corps, Contra Legacy of War, The Contra Adventure, Hard Corps Uprising, Contra Evolution, and many more.