Taking the scrolling gunman action of Ikari Warriors, the black-masked antics of The Ninja, and the date-shifting gimmick of Time Soldiers, Ninja Commando is one of the better takes on the shooter genre present on the Virtual Console.

After selecting one of three different characters, the player (along with a buddy if they so prefer) heads out to defeat the big evil boss across several time periods, from ancient Japan to classical Egypt to modern-day times. This gives the game a unique feel, and propels the player to work to get further ahead to see what the next level will hold.

The VC version retains the memory card functionality of the original game, so you can restart from the same level you left off on, even after your initial three continues run out. More of the Neo Geo VC releases really need to make use of this feature, as it actually does add a bit of length to the gameplay.

Combined with some nice graphics and a unique power-up system, where how fast you press the fire button determines the strength of your shots, Ninja Commando is definitely one of the better Neo Geo games on the VC, and well worth a download if you're a shooter fan.

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