If you’re a fan of arcade shooters here’s an isometric squad-based one that’s loads of fun. V.2 Play’s B-Team: Metal Cartoon Squad is a cartoony Nintendo DS game that doesn’t take itself too seriously and delivers hours of brainless action. The game introduces itself via a cut scene showing a team of lazy mercenaries receiving a bundle of cash to perform some random mission. The spoofy feel of the game extends to the art style of everything from the cut scenes, to the mission briefing.
Low budget, light-hearted
The cut scenes have barely animated, cut-out styled characters, which give it a deliberate low-budget feel. The mission briefings appear as text while the colonel actually says “blah blah blah”, accentuating the fact that most people don’t care about mission briefings in action games.
The light-hearted approach permeates through the gameplay too and it’s all-out action from start to end. The game basically has you play in a squad of misfit mercenaries, which includes a machine-gun toting Eskimo and a terribly obvious spy. There are no squad-based mechanics though, and each squad member is basically an extra life. Once your health bar gets over, one of your squad members falls in battle leaving you with one less life and less firepower. When all three of squad members die, mission fails.
Challenging and fun
The controls are pretty simple too — you tap the screen to shoot and use the D-pad to move around. But the game’s still quite challenging. Missions are of four basic types — Elimination, Rescue, Escape and Boss battles. The enemy AI isn’t the brightest, but it can get tricky when they horde you in numbers.
The Boss battles are the game’s redeeming feature. These range from a giant tank, to a chopper equipped with payloads. To sum it up, B-Team: Metal Cartoon Squad may not be the most ingenious game on the DS, but it manages to please those arcade shooter pangs quite well.