Combat in Contra Returns is one of the most familiar things in video game history. While a lot of people have been playing run-and-gun games ever since they were little, it doesn’t mean that everyone knows how to play every game based on that knowledge. The Contra series is notorious for being one of the most difficult games in its genre and Contra Returns isn’t any different. Picking up some combat tactics will significantly help players play the game more efficiently.

How To Get Better At Combat In Contra Returns

While players technically have a huge HP pool and two additional free revives every stage, some main story campaigns require players to finish the stage while above a certain amount of HP or without using a single revive. To do this, you’ll need to improve the way you play the game. Another way to do it is to increase your firepower by huge margins, which you can learn in our Contra Returns Firepower Guide. Here are some things you’ll need to learn about in the game.

Spamming Abilities

There are two ways players can make mistakes when using abilities: spamming them too much or not using them often enough. Abilities are meant to be used, but not in a way that you’ll waste the efficiency of these skills on the wrong enemies. Don’t use all of your abilities on cooldown if there are only a few enemies that can be taken out by your regular attacks. In addition, you shouldn’t save up your abilities for too long because you might end up taking too much time to clear a stage.

How To Get Better At Combat In Contra Returns

Use your abilities as often as possible on enemies where they make sense to be used. AoE attacks are best used on clumped-up enemies while single-line abilities are best used on multiple enemies on a single platform. Tankbusters need to be used on enemies with shields or force fields. There are different kinds of enemies, which is why Contra Returns features so many heroes to choose from, to counter them. It’s a good idea to save abilities when you’re reaching your reload threshold so that you don’t lose DPS.

Swapping Weapons

As you might already know, there are two weapon types in Contra Returns which are the Main Weapon and Sub-weapon. Sub-weapons act similarly to the temporary weapons that you can take from item pods in the game, except that they have unlimited reloads. The important thing to note about Sub-weapons is that they work best on specific situations so equipping the Spread Gun and using it 100% of the time shouldn’t be your only play (like what a lot of you probably currently do).

How To Get Better At Combat In Contra Returns

The main weapon is extremely useful in all situations because the quick-firing rate allows you to clear enemies a lot faster than other weapons. However, there are moments when you want to use the sub-weapons, but that depends on your assessment of the current situation. It’s also not always a good idea to pick up the weapons that you get from the item pods, especially if you’re replacing your main weapon because it might end up becoming more difficult to clear enemy waves.

Movement and Firing

The most difficult thing in Contra Returns is moving, dodging, and repositioning while firing. Every Contra player knows that standing still while firing is essentially a death sentence, especially if you’re in stages that include constant movement, featured by self-destructing bridges and other similar hazards. Even though you’re being forced to move around, enemies won’t simply stand around and allow you to figure it out peacefully.


How To Get Better At Combat In Contra Returns

In the One-Life Mode, moving and firing become the most important mechanics that you’ll need to learn. While you’re playing in the weaker stages of Contra Returns or if you’re farming the Endless Mode, try to practice jumping and moving while firing. The sooner you learn how to do these things, the easier you can adjust to the more difficult stages later on. Remember that you can shoot during any action except while reloading on the main weapon that you’re currently using.

Aim Your Weapon

Unsurprisingly, the weapons and abilities in Contra Returns don’t only have a set direction for how they fire. By holding the firing icon or the hero ability, players can set the direction or distance that they want before releasing the ability. This is especially useful when you need to eliminate an enemy that’s on a lower level without having to drop down just to hit it. This is also very important when fighting some bosses that have disruptive mechanics like tentacles or shields.

How To Get Better At Combat In Contra Returns

Contra Returns has an auto-target system that is reliable about 70% of the time. While this is enough to clear most of the early stages, it becomes a bad habit to rely on this every time, because it’ll be hard to aim when playing modes like PvP. If you’re using BlueStacks, you’ll be able to drag the controls around with ease by using your mouse while firing. This isn’t just exclusive to main weapons either, you can also do it with sub-weapons like the spread gun or flamethrower.

Finding the Weakspot

Bosses can be tricky to fight, even in the early stages of the game. Trying to spam your gun and hope that you hit the right spot isn’t going to do you any good, especially if you’re trying to clear the stage with a higher rating. Luckily, every Contra player knows that bosses are easy to beat, but only if you know where their weak spot is. Weak spots are places where the boss is particularly vulnerable and is usually where they only take damage.

How To Get Better At Combat In Contra Returns

Weak spots are pretty obvious to find. Anything that involves something resembling an eye or ahead is usually the weak spot in Contra. Of course, there will be a lot of things that will try to protect it such as tentacles or shields. Try to use tank-buster abilities to remove shields or fire using your main weapon (please, don’t use the spread gun for this) whenever you see a window of opportunity where the enemy leaves their weak spot exposed.