The Neo Geo was known for great arcade games that catered to many gamer tastes, at least early on. There were racing, fighting, action and adventure games available on this SNK arcade behemoth, that is before fighting games really took off. One such action game, Top Hunter, borrowed a little from the Fatal Fury fighting games and some from the Mario series from Nintendo and created a unique experience that, sadly, was only one game and not a series.
You play as either Roddy (player 1 only) or Cathy (Player 2 only), interstellar bounty hunters on the search for the leaders of the Galactic Pirates called the Klaptons. The usual Neo Geo wackyness shines through in various places such as when you are controlling a mech and jump from one plane of the game area to another and land on a bad guy- he flattens out like an old Saturday morning cartoon and floats to the ground in a swaying motion. This two planes of playfield is barrowed from another popular SNK series, the Fatal Fury series and it is used quite well here. You are constantly forced to fight on both fields (front and back) and even use them to avoid obstacles/enemies that are in your way.
Top Hunter is thought to be the precursor of the Metal Slug series. Fans will notice a lot of similarities between the two games, not just in the overly detailed game world but in some enemies that crossed over into SNK’s run n gun series.
Top Hunter has made appearances both the MVS (arcade) and AES (home) platforms and also the Neo Geo CD, Wii Virtual Console and SNK Arcade Classics Volume 1 (PS2, PSP and Nintendo Wii)
Be warned, the Neo Geo CD version has the better soundtrack but long load times. So take your pick, better music in game but longer waits or lesser quality music with less waiting for the action.