Reagan Gorbachev is developed and published by Team2Bit. ‘The year is 1986. Cold War leaders Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev have been kidnapped by militant extremists. Once rivals, now the iconic presidents must set aside their differences, loosen their ties, and prepare for a blood-soaked battle. Armed only with their fists and samurai swords and poison darts and pistols and shotguns and fully automatic assault rifles and grenade launchers and miniguns and some other guns – sneak, slash or shoot your way through 32 levels of chaos in time to save the world from nuclear Armageddon.’
Reagan Gorbachev is a top-down stealth-shooter puzzle game that definitely does things differently to many of the other games on the arcade. It uses an 80’s video game visual style and soundtrack which fits right in with the time which it is supposed to be set. The main focus of the game is to help Reagan and Gorbachev escape the base they are held in although other story elements come into play as you move on. The objective of each level is to get Reagan and Gorbachev to the marked vent at the end of the level; while that is the main objective there is a leaderboard for the fastest time to beat the level so there is a competitive speedrunning element to the game also. As you complete each level you will also get a quiz where a question will test your knowledge on the presidents. There’s an achievement related to getting some of these questions right, I failed a couple when I played but still managed to unlock the achievement.
In single player you can swap between Reagan and Gorbachev as you play. Each character has their own abilities, for example: Reagan can lockpick red doors and Gorbachev can hack into terminals to open doors. They also have their own weapons to use. Reagan uses a katana as his base weapon making him effective for close-quarters while Gorbachev uses poison darts to take out enemies from a distance. Players can also pick up other weapons such as handguns, shotguns etc. which replace the base weapons but can alert enemies in the base making some levels harder unless you use something like a silenced pistol which is effective for speed running. The majority of levels can be completed with stealth and not alerting the enemies but some of them require the use of a bazooka (which alerts the entire base straight away) to blast part of a wall down.
After completing each level you will also get a cutscene with both of the presidents having small arguments about their ideals which adds a bit of humour to two of the men who could’ve caused nuclear war should they have done anything wrong back in their time. There is co-op in the game where one player controls each president in split screen so you and a friend can try to speedrun and playthrough the game together. Sadly, however this mode isn’t online which would’ve been a nice addition to the game.