Mega Man X (Super Nintendo) Review

By Ofisil 13.11.2016

Review for Mega Man X on Super Nintendo

Capcom. This Japanese video game behemoth is responsible for tons of successful games, with the best example being its two major cash-cows, the Resident Evil and Street Fighter franchises. If there's an IP on its hands that has had more releases than anything else, however, that would surely be Mega Man. After rocking the world through six hardcore run-and-gun bundles of fun on the NES, it inevitably made an appearance on the good 'ol Super Nintendo, with the first in a new spin-off series, Mega Man X - and while it didn't deviate much from the standard formula, it became extremely popular, with some even claiming it to be the best amongst the 8/16-bit eras. Was it such as fantastic as gamers made it to be, however?

Starting Mega Man X back in the day had certainly blown out the minds of many gamers. A highway bridge looming over a futuristic city that stretched to infinity, and that created a great sense of depth, an awesome, fast-paced rock track, and, at the centre of it all, Mega Man in his first adventure as 'X,' a form that takes its former cuteness, and throws it out of the window, because our robotic hero looks cool and pissed-off here.

It's no secret. Capcom + Mega Man = great audio-visuals (let's pretend that Mega Man Legends never happened). To be honest, though, while undoubtedly fantastic, this lacks the more striking look and feel of the NES series. The tunes are fast and well-composed, but nowhere near that iconic, and the visuals, while some of the best on the system, look more like real places (albeit, in their hi-tech versions), rather than those otherworldly locales of the past… if that makes any sense.

Screenshot for Mega Man X on Super Nintendo

Nit-picking aside (because it is nit-picking), the franchise was always all about the gameplay, and, thankfully, it's great as every, although it has undergo a couple of changes. The most important one is that Mega Man X is more of a shooter than a platformer. Besides the fact that there's not much platforming to do, its all super easy, especially easy when compared to the NES series. Simple enemies are also a piece of cake, especially since X can charge his beam to create an even more powerful one.

The only real challenge that remains here are mini and main bosses, with some of them being able simply give you hell, first by (once again) being faster from Mega Man, more powerful, and far better armoured. Of course, the hero still retains his ability to steal the powers of killed bosses, which can be used to take advantage of the weak spot of these hard foes. Surprisingly, many will find out that even with most weapons acquired, the bosses will still need a lot of firepower to go down.

Screenshot for Mega Man X on Super Nintendo

The main reason for that is that this title is as hard as you make it be. To put it simply, if you don't explore around (since levels are now not as linear as before) and find a couple of some very essential upgrades, then you'll find out that the whole odyssey might feel impossible at times - although it's still doable. There are power-ups that enhance X's armour, help him make a fast dashing move, or make longer leaps.

Even better, there are items that increase the, admittedly, short health meter, and Sub-tanks that, similar to the Energy Tanks of the past, can be consumed to fully charge your health, with the only difference being the fact that they can be refilled indefinitely by collecting simple health items when at full capacity. The absolute best "add-on" however, is the X-buster enhancement, because this enables to charge all stolen weapons, and thus be able to finally strike a more powerful blow to the head honchos.

Screenshot for Mega Man X on Super Nintendo

Besides from a lack of challenge, and an even more severe lack of decent platforming segments, it's no wonder that Mega Man X is considered by many to be better than the NES classics. Is it though? Well, it's honestly quite hard to tell, mainly because some of its elements have been improved while others have taken a backseat. For instance, while linear, the levels used to be far more intricate, but, at the same time, the gameplay now feels much faster and dynamic than before.

Even by a tiny margin, however, this is truly the better game, but it does have a very serious flaw, that may or may not ruin the fun for many. Namely, if you have played a few NES Mega Man's, then you've played Mega Man X, because, despite the few big or minor additions, this just feels as if Mega Man has gotten a 16-bit facelift, unlike, for example, Super Metroid, which took the original, and improved it by a thousand-fold.

Screenshot for Mega Man X on Super Nintendo

Cubed3 Rating

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

Mega Man X looks and sounds good, it's fast and challenging, and, for the first time in the series' history, strongly encourages exploration. To be honest, though (get those torches and pitchforks ready), it feels as if something is missing here. The biggest issue with the Blue Bomber's first 16-bit quest is the fact that it doesn't really feel like an evolution. It's great and all, but pretty much the same deal all over, instead of a game changer like other SNES sequels and continuations.

Developer

Capcom

Publisher

Capcom

Genre

2D Platformer

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  10/10 (2 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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