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The Rail Cannon is a miniboss and an optional vehicle in Contra 4. It is a man-operated transport unit with a napalm cannon installed below the chassis that travels at great speed along a large metal rail.

Description[]

A man-operated mobile cannon that travels along a large metal rail high above the ground. The Rail Cannon makes its introduction near the final section of the Jungle stage. When reaching this area, the game maliciously lures the player by placing a metal rail for them to hang on, only for the Rail Cannon to immediately enter the screen at full speed, most likely killing them if they fell for the trap.

The pod will then start moving from side to side at great speed while incessantly firing large napalm blasts straight down. These projectiles have the ability to destroy the darker sections of the ground, producing "endless" pits as a result and hindering the player's maneuverable options.

After sustaining enough damage, the pilot of the machine will die and the lid of the cockpit will open. If the pod stopped at a proper position, the player will then be able to use their grappling hook to latch onto the highest rail and from there jump inside the vessel, thus taking advantage of the vehicle and its enhanced firepower.

The player will then be able to travel at full speed across the battlefield while blasting the almost defenseless enemy troops below (just for amusement, as it's not really necessary). Otherwise, they would have to deal with the enemies on foot and this area in particular isn't that easy to traverse that way; more so, if the Rail Cannon was not destroyed and is still chasing them and producing more holes on the ground amidst all the chaos.

The ride inside the vessel isn't very lengthy, though, and soon the player will reach the end of the structure where it displaces along, although fortunately this place is located right before reaching the area boss.

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