Well it’s finally time to end the Classic Mega Man Marathon of reviews for now…and we’re going back to 8-bit? Really? After 7 and 8 being graphically superior, we go back to NES graphics? Well I like retro games so I don’t mind. I guess that Capcom looked at the indie market and made an attempt to being back classic Mega Man in the downloadable markets, and why not? It’s not like some people are still waiting for a physical copy of these games…but seriously, why didn’t the Legacy Collection have Mega Man 7, 8, 9 and 10? So after about ten years after the disappearance of classic Mega Man, he was back, ready for some more 8-bit action. Mega Man 9, known as Rockman 9: Yabō no Fukkatsu!! (ロックマン9 野望の復活!! Rokkuman Nain Yabō no Fukkatsu!! “Rockman 9: Revival of Ambition!!”) in Japan, developed by Inti Creates and Capcom and published by Capcom, it was released in 2008 worldwide and in 2009 on the Japanese Xbox Live Arcade.
So some robot masters are wreaking havoc in the year 20XX, it seems Dr. Wily is causing trouble again. But what’s worse is that Wily would know that people would point at Wily for being the culprit so puts the blame on Dr. Light for these crimes, framing him in the process. So it’s up to Mega Man to stop the robot masters, defeat Dr. Wily again and clear Dr. Light’s name.
As always in Mega Man: Battle eight Robot Masters, collect their powers, and defeat Dr. Wily: The End and that’s all she wrote. Our Robot Masters include Galaxy Man with his Black Hole Bomb, Jewel Man and his Jewel Satellite, Concrete Man and his Concrete Shot, Plug Man and his Plug Ball, Tornado Man and his Tornado Blow, Magma Man and his Magma Bazooka, Hornet Man and his Hornet Chaser, and finally…oh…Splash Woman and her Laser Trident. Yep, for the first and only time so far, we have a female Robot Master. I’m guessing Capcom wanted to get the female gamers playing their game I guess? But this is Japan, this wouldn’t last long.
So we can shoot, run and…not slide and charge out weapon? Urm, Capcom, you do realise that you’re supposed to OH WAIT, this is going back…as in far back to the point of Mega Man 2, where the Blue Bomber didn’t have those abilities. But at least most of the level design is suited to whatever moves Mega Man has anyway. Rush is still here and his abilities are once again in the form of Coil and Jet, nice one, who’s a good boy?
You like those shops? Well it’s back and you can buy items, our currency is bolts in the game, so that means buying as much energy tanks as I can…when I have enough bolts as this game can be stingy at times or put big bolts in tough to reach places. But there are other items like one that cuts damage you take in half, one that prevents you from taking damage against spikes for one level, Eddie, Beat the Bird, Mystery Tanks, 1-Ups, the works. Heck you can spend 200 bolts to change Roll’s costume from her classic dress to her attire from Mega Man 8 (DON’T).
And as for the gameplay…I hate…most of it. I absolutely hate…most of it. I don’t mind cheap placements from time to time but BY GOD can it drive you mad at times, like the overuse of spikes, enemy placements, and I know Mega Man games are usually tough, that’s par for the course, but there’s more noticeable cheap moments, add to the fact that some checkpoints are quite further than it needs to be. I can handle all the Mega Man games (minus Mega Man & Bass), but this was challenging in the worst way possible, though it’s not Mega Man & Bass levels of frustration, I’ll give it that.
The graphics, despite regressing to 8-bit, is great, it still has that Mega Man charm that even 7 and 8 didn’t have and the level design looks nice and fit the identities of the robot masters. The game also has an option for Legacy Mode, in which you can have sprite flickering, just like the good old days of NEVER…but seriously though, who would turn this on apart from sheer curiosity? The music is OK, it’s the Mega Man style we all know and it does the job fantastically.
Overall, Mega Man 9 is fairly decent but it was something I didn’t really enjoy. But if you want some Mega Man action with the slide and charge buster, you can download Proto Man because DLC everyone. I appreciate the game for returning as well as giving us the gift of nostalgia and doing it properly, but I’m not a fan of parts of the gameplay, and that saddens me.
Even though this is a downloadable game, it got a western cover:
Oh well, we still have one final game to review.
Mega Man 10, known as Rockman 10: Uchū kara no Kyōi!! (ロックマン10 宇宙からの脅威!! Rokkuman Ten Uchū kara no Kyōi!! “Rockman 10: Threat from Outer Space!!”) in Japan, released in 2010 worldwide.
It seems that robots can get the flu too as there’s an epidemic of Roboenza, which causes malfunctions to robots and humans can do anything without them WOW the future is lazy. It then causes the robots to attack humans and take over the world. Roll, Mega Man’s sister, comes down with the virus too. So Mega Man decides to investigate the virus. That is until Dr. Wily crashes his ship near the Blue Bomber’s house. It seems Wily was supposed to develop a cure for it, but was attacked by robots. He asks Mega Man to collect his medicine-making machine so that Wily can continue to develop the medicine. But can Wily be trusted? That depends; he has been the villain ten times before, so I’m going to answer and short but sweet, no.
You can actually play as three characters, Mega Man, Proto Man and Bass…who’s DLC. Actually, I managed to get Mega Man 9 & 10 in a PSN sale, with all the DLC bundled with the games. Wait, and you shall be rewarded my children! But Bass plays quite well and he’s worth the money should you really want him (JUST GET THE BUNDLE THOUGH!).
Gameplay: Mega Man, let’s move on!
How the game plays: Much better, in fact, it’s still challenging but fair this time round. But if it’s still too hard for you, there’s a difficulty mode in the form of Easy, Normal and Hard, so anyone can pick up and play this game with no issues.
Robot Masters: Chill Man and his Chill Spike, Nitro Man and his Wheel Cutter (that reminds me of Metal Man’s Metal Blade), Commando Man and his Commando Bomb, Blade Man and his Triple Blade, Strike Man and his Rebound Striker, Sheep Man and his Thunder Wool, Pump Man and his Water Shield and Solar Man and his Solar Blaze.
Graphics: Mega Man. Though I do like the level design here, my favourite stages are Strike Man’s sport theme and Sheep Man’s…internet theme? I don’t know how sheep fit with the information super highway, but it’s nice to play nonetheless.
The music is actually much better, as in it’s much catchy and memorable, it nearly harkens back to Mega Man 2 levels of memorability, but not by much.
Overall, Mega Man 10 was quite fun…it’s Mega Man and barely anything has changed.
So I’ve had a great time with playing Mega Man games and to see its evolution…and devolution (not in a bad way though). It’s a series that is still beloved by its long-time fans and I can see why. It’s a shame that Capcom has barely done anything with the series nowadays apart from the comics (as far as I know) and his appearance in Super Smash Bros. for the Wii U and 3DS.
So that’s it for the original Blue Bomber for now. And the next time I go back to Mega Man, it’s time to go to the further future with the X series. Yep, the X series. But not now. No, the next marathon is another character who’s blue.
You can get Mega Man 9 and 10 on WiiWare, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.