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What the hell, Metal Slug is coming back as a tactics game

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Dotemu, the indie publisher behind classic '90s game revivals like Streets of Rage 4, is back with a game I sure as hell didn't see coming: Metal Slug Tactics. The game, revealed at the Summer Game Fest today, is described on Steam (opens in new tab) as "a dynamic tactical RPG with roguelike elements."

Metal Slug Tactics is an isometric strategy game with pixel art that makes me very happy to look at. It's not quite as ludicrously detailed and flashy as the Metal Slug arcade games of old, perhaps, but it still has a lot of character. Call it a bouncier Advance Wars.

Here's the pitch from the Steam page: 

"Experience the iconic dynamic battles of the METAL SLUG series with a brand new perspective. Build up your adrenaline bar to unlock super attacks and use them wisely. Gain some precious war experience after each battle and unlock weapons or bonus perks to upgrade your team’s firepower."

Some other details:

• Mission layouts are procedurally generated

• Metal Slug bosses are coming back

• Returning characters include Marco, Eri, Fio, and Tarma

There's currently no release date for Metal Slug Tactics.

What's up next? Here's the full E3 2021 schedule
Check out our list of every game at E3 so far

Wes has been covering games and hardware for more than 10 years, first at tech sites like The Wirecutter (opens in new tab) and Tested (opens in new tab) before joining the PC Gamer team in 2014. Wes plays a little bit of everything, but he'll always jump at the chance to cover emulation and Japanese games.


When he's not obsessively optimizing and re-optimizing a tangle of conveyor belts in Satisfactory (it's really becoming a problem), he's probably playing a 20-year-old Final Fantasy or some opaque ASCII roguelike. With a focus on writing and editing features, he seeks out personal stories and in-depth histories from the corners of PC gaming and its niche communities. 50% pizza by volume (deep dish, to be specific).