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randombullseye avatar 7:42 AM on 01.23.2010  (server time)
Old School Games: Mega Man X

Continuing where I left off, is Mega Man X. Mega Man's 8-bit adventures we're greatly, mostly, but I understand how some people would want something a little ediger. More mature. With a more fleshed out storyline and flashier effects. Enter Mega Man X, the first of many spin off Mega Man series, that also spawned its own series of games currently at number 8, as well as an RPG being released. This is all about that first game. They did eventually do Mega Man 7 for SNES and 8 for Saturn/Playstation, but neither took the series in the right direction. The X series totally did things right. I don't want to write about Mega Man 8 unless pressured into doing so. Here is why. Mega Man X just seemed like the right thing to do, where as those games did not.

Looks like you can't make it right? Well you can climb walls somehow. Just jump on a wall and climb it with jumps!

Twenty dollars for a new Mega Man! It was 199X. My half brother had told me all about Mega Man X while we played the first Mega Man. "X is so much better. It's so much cooler." He would go on and on. He told me about the secret in Sting Cameleon where you get the armor and so on. He was all about Mega Man X. Of course, we had trouble with regular Mega Man. Ice Man's death trap of a level with those blocks that disappear and reappear. How would we handle something with sixteen bits of flashing blocks? Many years later after I lost touch with him, I happen to find in the Super Nintendo section: Mega Man X. I had to have it.

And so I had it. And nonstop, I played it constantly. Before gamestop, funcoland, and all these other places where you could buy games, I had nothing. I had flea markets and an Ames. That Ames burned down and things went dead as far as buying new games. I was not interested in the Nintendo 64 or Playtation at that time, that would come later. Even now I still prefer the two dimensional gameplay of sprite graphics, why else would I talk mostly about old school games, but finding this at our new Wal Mart made me so happy. This legendary, to me, Mega Man X. I couldn't stop playing.

The first night I managed to beat Chill Penguin. I had no idea the sequence of bosses or weaknesses or any concept of that. I just picked and went for it. Until I beat that pengiun bastard's face in. Obviously after beating him, I knew I had to beat Flame Mammoth. So before school, I woke up early and played and played - I was actually late becuase I had to beat him. I had to use my new found ice powers to finish off a second boss, write down my password, and sprint out for school. I experience similar things now, escept I'm finding a save spot and rushing out for work. It's amazing how much I've grown as a person in twenty three years.

I laugh at this guy's official art. This is Boomer Kuwanger. He's renamed Boomerang in the PSP to make more sense of his weapon. More interestingly, I never really knew what this jerk actually was. As a kid we thought Boomer Kangeroo, but no, it's Kuwanger. Its some type of Beetle, which explains his design better. I just wanted to quickly write that out for some reason.

As for the game itself, which I've barely spoken of three paragraphs in, I'll speak at length about how great it is. As near perfect as Mega Man can be. All the bosses are perfect Mega Man style bosses. Instead of being a "Man" they're all animals. And have pretty clear properties, mostly. I've only twice in my life heard a monkey refered to as a Mandrill. I and the rest of the universe see's that type of monkey and says "monkey!" Not Mandrill. And certainly not a "Spark Mandrill." The battles with each boss all feel like classic Mega Man to me. They each have their patterns and weaknesses, but more than that, they react to their weakness. For example, the armadillo is shocked out of his armor and becomes really easy to beat. Another cool thing, is beating a boss effects another level. Such as when the fire level becomes frosted over when you beat the Penguin. Little touches like that make this game super effective for me.

Full powered and full energy tanks, full armor.

All the boss powers are solid powers. You've a three shot weapon, an ice one, a fire one, electrical one, then you have a boomerang, a homing weapon, and then it gets a little obscure. One guy, an Armidillo, gives you the rolling shield. It's a ball shield that rolls, surpisingly. Then you get what is probably the most satisfying weapon in all of the Mega Man games. Nothing has ever made me personally feel as powerful as this thing. Storm Eagle gives you a tornado weapon. Not a little dinky tornado like top man-type would give you or the one in Mega Man 8 that barely shoots up. No, you shoot out a screen crossing vortex that kills everything. Even Super Joes, you know those guys with the shields? This thing murders them. I love it!

Then after you beat all the stages, you get the Sigma stages. Which are all awesome spectacles to behold. Each has a seperate boss that are really wild fights. Like the Spider boss and the door robots. What's really cool is you get Zero, another hero robot in the Mega Man X games, you get his upgraded gun. This allows you to charge your special guns and gives them all new attacks. It's possible to get this earliar in the game, as well as several upgrades, but they're hidden in the levels and I always forget whats where. I know I did when I last played and just said "Well I'll just play it anyway. I don't care about boots that break rocks." And I don't care about the boots that break rocks or the helmet. They're fairly useless. I do care about the Hadoken though. You can actually find a hidden hadoken ability. Nothing really major, just a quick "hadoken!" and its over with.

Anyway then it comes to the impossible final fight with Sigma and his dog. Yes he has a dog. This is the most intense boss sequence in all of video games. Well maybe not. But it is intense. You've a several part fight against his dog, him, then him as a giant room spiked beast that kills you. At least it killed me. I never figured out that the shield was the weapon to use on this guy. I feel like such a loser. Let's all laugh at me who kept charging his weapon to attack this guy. I feel awful about that.

Music on this thing is incredible. It makes such great use of the super nintendo. Mega Man's always known for great music, and X is one of the better examples. My favorite being the Armidillo stage theme. Something about it does it for me. Maybe it's that I've heard it so much grinding for the health to fill up my four back up things. It's just so catchy and sticks with me. I usually play games muted, but I catch myself humming the songs when the sound isn't on sometimes.

As for sequels, X2 and X3 are really great super nintendo games. X4 I bought off of ebay along with Mega Man 8. I love it. It's big addition was anime cutscenes that didn't make Mega Man look stupid. X5, X6, X7, and X8 I passed on. I recently got X5 but I've barely played it. So far its everything I want. At some point I'm going to make time for it, and when I do, I'm sure I'll love it. I can't not love Mega Man games. Proper real Mega Man games. Not this jokey RPG Mega Mans. Which there actually is a Mega Man X RPG that I will probably play. I play everything.

I will mention a fun game that I got for PSP. Mega Man Maverick Hunter X. It's a remake of Mega Man X in 3D, but 2D. All new level layouts for bonus items, unless I'm just stupid and forgot what went where, it adds voices for the storyline stuff (which I don't really follow. X wakes up in the future or something, and I don't care. I want to play Mega Man. How much deeper should a game be than here's the bad guys, go get em!) and I found it to be a great PSP game. It does play with level layouts and boss battles a little. Not much, but I was able to notice some minute differences as someone whose played a lot of Mega Man X. One of only a handful of PSP games that are actually good. I'll also mention Mega Man Powered Up, despite not being Mega Man X. It's a remake of the first Mega Man and also good if you have that system.

Mega Man X is great. A great game. If you have to play one other Mega Man besides 2, play X.



American box was great, but look at this Japanese one!

Did you guys ever play Mega Man X? I know I sure did.

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