Still classic after almost twenty years!
Why did I not release it for three years? First off: challenging gameplay. Mastering the baby-steps of using your bionic arm is just the first step -- learning how to time successive grab-swing-release-grab-swing-release maneuvers over pits of jagged metal or from spotlight-to-spotlight is a whole other story. Throw in every variety of enemy soldier and armament available, and you've got more than enough on your plate just trying to stay alive. Couple this with the fact that you have to earn your continues, and that there is no password/save function, and you can see why this takes a while to get through.
The second reason I was loathe to give this back was that it had a good, long lifespan for an 8-bit game. Nineteen playable levels, each with the ability to go back in case you equipped the wrong communicator before entering and made every communique read like **** And you could always guarantee a few run-ins with the enemy convoys as you made your way to each new territory, so that drew things out a bit too.
Third was that it was just plain fun. Its bright, colorful graphics and original score made sure that the fifteenth time you tried to beat a board was more a "challenge" than an "annoyance." The run-ins with the enemy convoys took you into gameplay that was immediately reminiscent of the original Commando. Dialogue between characters was poorly translated in that inimitably entertaining way that has been lost to the full-motion graphics and Hollywood scripts now employed in games. Even though I've long since returned the original to my friend, eBay recently yielded up my very own copy of the game some eighteen years later so that, once again, I can try to time my bionic arm swings just right and get ready to watch Admiral Killt's head explode. Great times.