Because the rows don’t have an even number of characters, I will now introduce the first character I feel should have made it onto the final roster. Drum roll plea… aw, fuck it. It’s Mega Man. Like there was any guess.
Below is my outline of why Mega Man should have made it and how he would fit within the context of the series based off of existing characters/moves as well as unique moves that would need to be introduced specifically for his inclusion. But, before I start outlining why and how I think he would work within Smash, I need to explicitly detail something: I don’t know Mega Man’s entire history. Therefore, I am pulling my concept of Mega Man from what I remember as a kid playing his games (I think played a couple of the original and the first Mega Man X title). That means there may be much cooler moves he could perform that I don’t know about. I apologize. I’m just kicking around ideas here.
Here it goes.
*New Challenger Approaching* Mega Man
The Blue Bomber was the fan favorite for inclusion in an online poll held a while back and many people the world over thought he would be announced by the time the game launched. He has a long tradition with Nintendo systems and he’s a classic character. He’s the perfect fit, pretty much. After having played Brawl, I realized it really wouldn’t have even taken that much tweaking to get him into the flow of the game and make him feel right at home. Once I played as all the characters I realized many characters borrow similar moves from one another, perhaps only with a little animation tweak to make it their own. That is how I envision fitting Mega Man into the game, by taking moves already existing within it, but making them a little more mega. It’s also to be noted I foresee Mega Man as a medium strength fighter overall, so he wouldn’t be overpowering. He would have some explosive Smash attacks, though.
The first move that absolutely needs to be in the game is his move copying. In his titles, Mega Man gains the knowledge of his defeated enemies by touching their guns or something (at least that was the explanation in the old cartoon). It’s a little different from Kirby, who simply sucks up whoever he wants, more or less. So, there are two ways this move could play out. The first is sort of out-of the-box: since he has to first defeat his foes, he starts off normal. But, once he KOs an opponent, he gains their neutral B attack. Again, the caveat is that he must KO them first. No walking up, stealing, and fighting with a newly gained power. Mega Man has to earn it.
The reason this may not be implemented in this fashion is that if he goes on a KO spree, say with a hammer, the action must not slow down and have him switch powers every two seconds, which may be a little awkward for some. It should only register the last KO within a certain time period. The other, more obvious way, it could be implemented is just like Kirby where his neutral B attack is some form of grab where he steals the power and gains it until dropping it and doing it to someone else, but that interrupts the rest of my moveset for him.
So, as a compromise of both scenarios, he would have to do damage to the person before being able to steal their power. After doing damage, when he performed a grab move on that character, he would steal their power. Again, Mega Man always had to earn the right to steal powers, Smash should be no different. Plus, it allows them to make up a multitude of cool “power steal” animations for each direction of grab. Although I don’t think this makes quite as much sense in terms of the character’s history (for that I’d go with the KO rule), it does make more sense within the context of Smash and keeps the flow of the game from stuttering. This is really a toss-up for me. I could see it going either way, but would personally prefer the second version (for gameplay's sake). Both are cool concepts unique to Mega Man, though.
Bring on the Blue Bomber!
His other most obvious move would be a charge up laser, like Samus. The move would pretty much appear and perform exactly as Samus’ already does (so it would be neutral B). The only big change to the move would be that when firing in air, instead of a single laser pellet launching (since she can’t charge in air anymore), Mega Man fires off three smaller pellets in rapid succession. The dude HAS to pew pew pew in this series or no one will be happy. Myself included. Also, his jump animation as he fell would look like the classic animation.
For his Over+B move I look to Fox and the Star Fox characters. Their Over+B dash move would be great for Mega Man. I remember in the X series him gaining a similar ability, so it would fit him decently and not be out of place (the only alternative I could think of would be firing a rocket like Samus but he already takes a lot from her moveset).
His Down+B is really questionable for me. There’s no one else’s move in the game currently that I feel reflects Mega Man that well, except for Zelda. That’s right, I think Mega Man should be able to change. Sort of. In the old games Mega Man, once he learned a power, kept it for the rest of the game. To reflect that in Smash, every character whose move he steals (from the grab, remember) he keeps for the rest of the round (or until KO’d). So, if he steals one power, Down+B switches him back to his regular laser firing (a la Samus), but if he steals two or more Down+B cycles through his powers so he can use whichever he feels is pertinent to the situation. The switch would have a timed/canned animation just like Zelda so that he couldn’t switch instantaneously on the fly, but it could be done if he got out of harm’s way for a few seconds. To help differentiate between the powers he’s using, his armor and coloring would change to reflect the character whose power he’s currently using, much like Kirby. It is to be noted they would also cycle through in the order he stole them, so it could change order between KOs if he managed to steal everyone’s power again in a single round.
For his Up+B move I’d really like to bring in Rush, his robot dog from the original game series. Rush would fly in as a rocket board thing (he used to turn into that) and Mega Man would grab onto it from the bottom and be rocketed at a roughly 45 degree angle upward for a short period (the angle could be changed for balancing purposes by the devs). This would function pretty much like Squirtle’s Up+B, only last a little longer and do explosive damage for anyone who got hit by it. Again, I don’t know enough about Mega Man to have any other options for a recovery move, save for his rocket boot things from the X series, but I think those were only used against walls and would fit better as the animation for his double jump instead of as a recovery (‘cause they would need to do damage).
As for his A attacks, I think a generalized series of punchs and kicks works fine. I think he should be moderately powerful, though. Dude’s a robot made to battle other more powerful robots and he wins all the time. Guy can prolly throw a jab, know what I mean? As for his Smash+A attacks, I take another page from Samus’ book (for Over-Smash+A as well as Up-Smash+A) but would prefer Snake’s Down-Smash+A because it’s explosive and the guy has a cannon for an arm. Just makes sense to me.
He'd turn into that guy for his FS. No, not the squid thing.
For his Final Smash, I think Mega Man should turn into Mega Man X. Think of his transformation into X in the Marvel vs. Capcom series. That’s sort of what I envision. He would grow to roughly twice his normal size (so he wouldn’t over power the stage) and his moves would all become more powerful, like Wario’s FS into Super Wario. He’d essentially change from a medium strength fighter to a super heavy. He’s also be able to fly with his rocket boots if you held in jump (like R.O.B.). His neutral B laser cannon would also be much more powerful in general, especially when fully charged. His copied moves would not carry over to his X version for the period he is in that form (for balancing reasons). Otherwise, he’d play almost exactly the same.
Mega Man’s stage would be Dr. Wiley’s factory. It would be medium-sized but with lots going on. The majority of the floors would be conveyor belts moving from the central part of the stage outward to the sides. There would be drop chutes that dropped robot bits and pieces as throwable items unique to the stage onto the belts. Every once in a while a chassis or upper body portion of a robot Mega Man has fought in his games would roll by and be quasi-functional. They would see fighters and launch a unique move from their own cannons to disrupt play before powering off and rolling off on the conveyor belts. Being KO’d on a conveyor belt off the side would shoot fire back into the field of play (as if you just got incinerated).
I have no real good ideas for an Assist Trophy for him to introduce that wouldn’t be derivative of other ATs. I’m all ears on that front.
Mega Man’s alternate colors would be reflective of suit changes he has had throughout the years. Kind of like how Samus has her GBA suit and such. I doubt they’d put in suit changes like they did for Wario, but it’s possible.
Mega Man = WIN! Seriously, I think he’d fit fine and would be rockin’ to play as. What do you all think? Mega Man will make it into the next iteration, Super Smash Bros. Bar Fight. You heard it here first.
Thanks for reading! Come back Monday for my critiques of Luigi and Diddy Kong!
Or read my review of the game here.
Or if you need to catch up on old critiques:
Mario and DK. Link and Samus. Kirby and Fox. Pikachu and Marth. Mr. Game & Watch.