Best Nes game ever. Although the game seems impossible to beat without the famous 30 lives cheat it really is possible. The problem is everyone is always concentrated on shooting and killing rather than self preservation. Just take it from a military person. Your first goal is to survive. And just don't look after yourself, look after your friend too. It is in your both interests to be together, hence why the games allows you to use each other's live when yours runs out.
I know most games teach you to get the points yourself but remember that "rounds down range" is the key. The more bullet that litter the sky, the harder it will be to kill you. There are so many people out there that may tell you otherwise, but there is no compensation for winning the game the way it was meant to be played.
Just try it, those who still have Nes system, and take the time to win the right way. After years of playing as a kid, and staying at friends overnight so many times, it was finally possible to win properly. Yes just one time I have beaten the game the proper way, but it was worth it. Now just
have to work on the next two Contras and see if they are possible.
Some Tips: Movement is the key, never stay in one place even for a second. The enemyís bullets will always go where you were, not where you are. Unlike in real war, stay close to you partner. That way all the bullets will be going to the same spot at all times. Just think of how many times you have died because you ran into a bullet meant for your buddy. Take advantage of up and down movement at all convinces. Double your space and utilize all open area to avoid being hit. Stay as far away from the enemy as you can. The system can only handle so much on the screen at one time so the more space that has bullets the less they can fire at you. No matter where you are don't stop firing. You are in the wonderful world of unlimited bullets and no reloading. Remember "rounds down range" is the key. It doesn't matter if youíre going to hit them or not, just the chance that you will is all you need. And you donít have to worry about friendly fire. Good luck.