Most people only read reviews to find out if they should buy, try or avoid a particular game. With that in mind, here's that info on Metal Slug Anthology for those who don't want to read a full review.
Buy: If you are a Metal Slug fan or enjoy 2D shooters (ex. Contra).
Try: If you haven't played Metal Slug or a 2D shooter before, but enjoy action games.
Avoid: If you don't like dated graphics, 2D games or shooters.
I'm a huge and long-time fan of SNK and their personality driven arcadey titles. So, it's no surprise that I love Metal Slug Anthology. But with six different Metal Slug games included in Metal Slug Anthology, SNK has made it quite easy for me to recommend this compilation. From the great menu and art, to the titles themselves, I do believe I want to have Metal Slug Anthology's babies. But enough gushing, let me go into why you may want to love this game as well.
The gameplay should be familiar to anyone who played video games in the days of arcades, but I'll explain it anyway for those that don't know. Metal Slug is essentially Contra with humor: move left or right, and blow the hell out of any and everything. You'll ride in vehicles that range from military, to slapstick, and if you don't see explosions on the screen at every moment, you're probably doing something wrong. It's pure adrenaline inducing action, and as long as you still love 2D, it's arguably an unparalleled group of shooting titles.
2D games have always been easier to control on the PSP than 3D, and Metal Slug Anthology is no exception. While you may find yourself dying frequently at times, it isn't because of the controls; it's your lack of skill. I still hope that when PSP2 comes out someday, I'll be able to play Metal Slug with one analog stick for movement and one for aiming. But despite my longing for this control scheme, it isn't typical of Metal Slug, nor expected.
Of course it wouldn't be a Metal Slug title without multiplayer, and Metal Slug Anthology delivers. Unfortunately, like most PSP games, the multiplayer is limited to ad-hoc. These sort of games actually do benefit from having the person you're playing with in the same room as you though, so it's not too hard to take.
It's simple, if you like Metal Slug or 2D shooting games, you simply need Metal Slug Anthology in your collection. Considering that not long ago, some of these titles were sold separately, you really are getting a deal with this collection. This won't change anyone's mind, if they aren't Metal Slug or action game fans, but to those that are, the experience doesn't get a whole lot more pure than this.
PSP Fanboy Score: 7.5