I wonder why it is that Super C lacks the iconic clout of its predecessor Contra? They’re both pretty dang great, but Super C is a little fancier and slicker than Contra without abandoning the simplicity and gritty “holy crap everything everywhere is exploding” sensation that made the first game so popular. It is a mystery!
But yeah, as this article explains, the arcade version was kind of lousy. When I hung around at Putt-Putt on weekend afternoons wasting tokens on arcade games, I always preferred playing Konami’s Aliens game to their in-house work Super Contra. Neither were especially great, but at least Aliens was honest about its inspiration.