- This first entry in the series provides all the platforming, run-and-gunning action anyone could want, on the NES or in the Arcades.
- Super Contra
- This quickly-produced sequel reuses a lot of assets from the original title but still manages to crank out a pretty decent (if not wholly original feeling) second entry.
- Operation C
- Translating the meat of the first two games to the Game Boy, this portable title pulls of the beats of the main series pretty solidly, even if it does feel like a bit of a retread.
- Contra III: The Alien Wars
- This SNES entry in the franchise does provide prettier graphics, and a lot of explosions, but it doesn't really find its feet until the back-half of the title.
- Contra Force
- A sequel in name only, this confused game has neither the charm, nor the polish, of the rest of the entries in the franchise.
- Contra: Hard Corps
- This expanded sequel does everything the series needed and so much more, making the greatest entry yet.