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Mega Man X Collection

Score: 85%
ESRB: Everyone
Publisher: Capcom
Developer: Capcom
Media: GCD/1
Players: 1
Genre: Action/ Platformer/ Classic/Retro

Graphics & Sound:

Soon after the announcement of the Mega Man Anniversary Collection, fans immediately began to ask about a compilation of Mega Man X. Capcom immediately denied that such a collection was in the works, but if our industry has taught us anything, it is that the more a company denies a product, the more likely it exists. Mega Man X Collection brings together all of X’s 16- and 32-bit adventures and serves as a fitting companion to the Anniversary Collection.

Since this is compilation of games, everything in the collection appears as it was on either the SNES or PlayStation. Anyone expecting extras like remixed soundtracks or upgraded visuals would be better off waiting for Mega Man Maverick Hunter X, scheduled for the PSP later this year. The only “change” of any note is the absence (or at least improvement) of slowdown that appeared in the original releases. A few interlacing issues also pop up, though these are common with 2D re-releases. Also worthy of note is that Mega Man X-3 isn’t the 16-bit SNES version, but the 32-bit PlayStation release. However, other than the upgraded presentation, there’s no difference between the two.


Gameplay:

Introduced in 1993, the Mega Man X series was meant to be the edgier, more “mature” version of Mega Man. The series takes place sometime in the near future and follows the exploits of Mega Man X, a more advanced version of the little blue star of the NES series. The story places X in the middle of a war between an anti-human movement led by a rogue robot named Sigma and the pro-human forces. In addition to adding a slightly more involved plot (which seems to grow in complex absurdity with each passing game), the series also introduced more complicated mechanics, numerous upgrades and new playable characters, like the saber-wielding Zero, to the traditional Mega Man formula of defeating enemy robots and acquiring their powers.

Any downsides found in the Collection are ones that had appeared in the original releases. As far as quality, the games are a mixed bag, ranging from the really good (X, X-2) to the really bad (X-6). As seems to be the case with the Mega Man series in general (X or otherwise), the quality begins to decrease with each increasing number tag. While this was a problem with the Anniversary Collection, it also offered more quality titles. Still, considering how difficult these games are to get a hold of otherwise, the collection is still worth a play through if you’re a fan.

A few extras are included, though the number is considerably less than those found in the Anniversary Collection. Other than the requisite art gallery, the compilation also includes Mega Man Battle & Chase as an unlockable bonus. The concept, which is basically Mario Kart with a Mega Man spin, is a quirky, but fun addition – especially since this is the first time the game has been released in the US.


Difficulty:

Mega Man X Collection’s difficulty goes hand-in-hand with the quality of the game. Earlier games in the series are well-balanced and challenging, while later ones, like X-6, are all over the place. Some levels are amazingly well thought-out, while others simply aren’t.

Even with the added mechanics, Mega Man X is still a Mega Man title and follows the same patterns as other titles in the series. Boss battles are hard when you first start, but become considerably easier once you begin to collect weapons and figure out the weaknesses of other bosses. Later games in the series also alter levels based on the order you complete them in, which adds a nice continuity to the various levels, but also seems to contribute to some poorly designed levels.


Game Mechanics:

No GameCube review would be complete without an update on my love-hate relationship with the GameCube’s controller. Initially, I had a feeling I might run into difficulties. While the controller worked great for the Anniversary Collection (which had a simpler control scheme), the X series added in new mechanics like wall-grabs and dashes, as well as dash jumps that I thought might be hard to pull off. Thankfully, nearly all of my concerns were for nothing.

While it may not be as loaded with extras as the Anniversary Collection, Mega Man X Collection it is still worth playing if you are a Mega Man fan or, like me, a fan of 2D gaming in general.


-Starscream, GameVortex Communications
AKA Ricky Tucker

Sony PlayStation 2 Mega Man X Collection Windows Strike Ball 2

 
Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated