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Classic Games (Games) Games

Game Review: Street Fighter X Mega Man 79

Posted by Soulskill
from the 1987-returns-with-a-vengeance dept.
Jon Brodkin writes "Pity poor Mega Man. The little blue robot boy with a gun for a hand was one of the most popular heroes in the Nintendo Entertainment System's heyday, starring in a video game series almost every bit as good as The Legend of Zelda and Super Mario Bros. The original Mega Man series resulted in some great games for the original NES and the Super Nintendo. But then he dropped (swiftly) from the face of the Earth. Attempts to bring Mega Man into the 3D world resulted in games not nearly as fun as their predecessors. Most recently, the planned Mega Man Legends 3 for Nintendo 3DS managed to generate a bit of fan excitement, but the project was canceled in July 2011. Gamers moved on — some grudgingly. Fans have clamored for Capcom to revive Mega Man for years, and it's happened to some extent. Mega Man 9 and 10 came out in 2008 and 2010, respectively, continuing the original series with the same graphical and gameplay style perfected in the 1980s. And Monday, something perhaps even more exciting occurred for Mega Man's 25th anniversary: the release of Street Fighter X Mega Man, a celebration of two excellent game series that have lost their luster in the HD age." Read on for the rest of Jon's review.

If you haven't downloaded and played Street Fighter X Mega Man (you can find it at Capcom-unity.com/mega_man), well, just go do it now (be aware: the Capcom servers have been getting hit hard with requests for the game). It's Windows-only for the moment, and free.

As with Mega Man 9 and 10, the style is identical to the original NES series. While the name might lead you to believe this is a fighting game, it's actually a side-scrolling adventure in the mode of previous Mega Man titles. The main difference is that the bosses (or Robot Masters) are Street Fighter characters.

It's old school in ways both good and bad, but mostly good. And it's definitely hard — Nintendo hard, as we used to say. Death in early Mega Man games came from either the swarming enemies or the difficult jumps that sent your robotic avatar plunging into an abyss; while the jumps in this newest title aren't so hard, the enemies swarm you so incessantly it's often difficult to keep your health level up.

As with those previous games, charging up your Mega Buster by holding the shoot button is essential, as is proceeding through the levels in the correct order in order to exploit the rock/paper/scissors weaknesses of each boss (one recommended order starts with Ryu and then goes on to Chun-li, Crimson Viper, Dhalsim, Blanka, Rose, Rolento, and Urien.)

The game doesn't totally recapture the magic of Mega Man 2 (my favorite in the series), but its level design is such that you'll feel like you're playing a classic Mega Man game. The music is also reminiscent of the classics, with a twist — occasionally you notice that a character's theme from Street Fighter (Chun-Li's, for example) has been redone in that distinctive 8-bit musical style. Some of the bosses' fighting styles are also reminiscent of how they fight in Street Fighter, giving diehard fans a bit of a leg up in terms of strategy.

The game is so old school that there's no way to save your progress, not even with a password — one of the very few downsides, at least in my opinion.

But it's hard to complain about a game that's free. And here's another thing: a fan made it. Devoted Mega Man enthusiast Seow Zong Hui from Singapore approached Capcom earlier this year with a prototype of the game, and he and the company saw it to completion.

Street Fighter X Mega Man takes its place alongside Super Mario Crossover and Abobo's Big Adventure as one of the best fan-made homages to classic video games. Only this time it's being distributed by Capcom, which should be commended for helping a fan-made project flourish, instead of targeting the loyal supporter with a copyright lawsuit. It's an example I'd love to see other companies follow — and I'd also love to see this be just the beginning of a revival for Mega Man. In an interview with Polygon, Capcom Senior VP Christian Svensson said Street Fighter X Mega Man is "a bit of a mea culpa" to fans, hinting at more to come.

In conjunction with Monday's release, Capcom announced that the first six Mega Man games will come to the Nintendo 3DS's online store starting later this month. One request I'd make (and I don't think I'm alone) is for Capcom to do whatever it takes to get Mega Man into the next version of Super Smash Bros.

Nostalgia titles and crossovers may well end up being the best way to go for Mega Man. While Super Mario Bros., Zelda, Final Fantasy, and other classic series continue to push the boundaries of gaming technology, it's hard to imagine Mega Man in a fully modernized game — perhaps because we simply don't know what that would be like, or whether it would be as fun as the originals.

I like to think of Mega Man the way I think about aging rock bands like The Who. Sure, he hasn't done anything truly new in a couple of decades. But when he plays his old stuff, man, it's worth paying attention.

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Game Review: Street Fighter X Mega Man

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  • by Rik Sweeney (471717) on Wednesday December 19, 2012 @12:23PM (#42337197) Homepage

    The game sort of works in Wine. When it starts up, it appears full screen with loads of corrupted graphics in the borders and there's no sound.

    The sound can apparently be fixed by installing dsound and directmusic via winetricks, but I haven't gotten around to that yet.

    The keyboard controls didn't work for me (apart from Escape), but I think it's because the game detects the plugged in joystick and prioritizes that.

    Apparently the game crashes for some users when they get to the boss, but I haven't gotten to one yet (because I suck at the game).

    Kubuntu 12.04

    • by Nyder (754090)

      The game sort of works in Wine. When it starts up, it appears full screen with loads of corrupted graphics in the borders and there's no sound.

      The sound can apparently be fixed by installing dsound and directmusic via winetricks, but I haven't gotten around to that yet.

      The keyboard controls didn't work for me (apart from Escape), but I think it's because the game detects the plugged in joystick and prioritizes that.

      Apparently the game crashes for some users when they get to the boss, but I haven't gotten to one yet (because I suck at the game).

      Kubuntu 12.04

      it used the WASD keys to move, once the game has started (enter will start it), you can hit F2 to config the keys.

    • Works perfectly with dsound and directmusic. Graphics also don't get corrupted if you emulate a virtual desktop.

  • by ildon (413912) on Wednesday December 19, 2012 @12:25PM (#42337207)

    The Megaman X series was still pretty good, and the Megaman Zero series on GBA/DS were good, too. Nothing ground-breaking, but still fun side scrollers. SFxMM is pretty much a direct follow-on to MM 9 and 10 in style and gameplay. The Megaman Legends series really didn't have anything to do with classic Megaman to begin with; at least no more than the relatively-current Megaman Battle Network games do. This review reads like it was written by someone who hasn't paid any attention to video games for the past 20 years.

    And everyone harping on this game for not having a save function is silly. It has infinite continues and doesn't take that long to beat. If you really find it so onerous you can just mute it and leave it running in the background. My main problem is that with an Xinput controller it defaults to using the joystick instead of the Dpad for directional control, and puts the Start button function on the right stick button.

    Anyway, it's a fun, classic-style Megaman game and anyone who loved those games should at least download it and run it once for the nostalgia/coolness factor.

    • This review reads like it was written by someone who hasn't paid any attention to video games for the past 20 years.

      Yeah, I thought that when I read this:

      the release of Street Fighter X Mega Man, a celebration of two excellent game series that have lost their luster in the HD age

      Since the dawn of the "HD age," Street Fighter has seen 3 new releases (Street Fighter IV, Super Street Fighter IV, and Super Street Fighter IV Arcade Edition), an HD remake of an older game (Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix), and a fan-service release of another popular entry (Street Fighter III 3rd Strike: Online Edition). Wow, Capcom's Street Fighter naming system is terrible.

      • by ildon (413912)

        And SFxTekken (which is clearly the inspiration for how SFxMM is titled).

  • The only two pitfalls I found in this game were the lack of saving of any sort and that the levels were a little on the easy side in comparison to older mega man games.
    Still a fantastic game though, and while they didn't participate in it's creation at all, I'm still glad capcom gave them a thumbs up by hosting the files.
  • Also "poor mega man"? Isn't that the series spoiled by sequelitis with a bratty fandom who only played less than 5% of them?
  • I played it last night, it definitely brings back memories of the old NES days. 8-bit remixes of Street Fighter themes in Mega Man style is exactly what melts the hearts of old school gamers.

    It took me a second to realize that my keyboard wasn't working because my joystick was plugged in (the game loads gamepads/joysticks before keyboard, so disconnect any unwanted input peripherals before starting the game) but after that, I went on to beat Chun Li and Ryu before I had to shut it down for the night and he

    • I dunno, I could never get into Megaman. I liked Mario a bit better. But then, most of my old school gaming was 16bit (SNES), I only tooled around on the original NES for maybe 6 months.
      Surprisingly (or perhaps not) my 11 yr old son absolutely loves the retro stuff, and all things 8 or 16 bit. With the exception of Team Fortress2 or Portal, he much prefers old school Mario, Sonic, Street Fighter, and Megaman... and a few I never heard of.
  • by decipher_saint (72686) on Wednesday December 19, 2012 @12:34PM (#42337299) Homepage

    I love Mega Man games, have since I was 12, one of things I liked was being able to pick up the action later using the password system (in future versions, there was a memory card / save)

    In this game there's no save, which is frustrating.

    I know you can probably sit down and finish it in one go but saving is a must, especially when the app is a little unstable.

    • I've been playing this and have a couple of ideas why there's no save feature: 1) Since its Street Fighter x Mega Man, Street Fighter does not have a Password or Save feature. Instead, they gave us infinite continues, which is what Street Fighter has (and the continue screen looks sort of like the Street Fighter continue screen) 2) Each level is relatively short - shorter than the typical Mega Man levels I remember (about 5 minutes per stage or less) so you should be able to play through it in one sitting
      • I dunno I had beat about 5 bosses and the game went kaput, so I was havin' a great ol time until I hit the wall without any safety net.

        Even a password like the classic NES days would have been worth it, even for something short with infinite continues.

  • Trailer (Score:4, Informative)

    by synapse7 (1075571) on Wednesday December 19, 2012 @12:35PM (#42337309)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=61-OMrOxyso [youtube.com]

    The Mega Man2-esque intro gave me chills, definitely one of my fav games.
  • Appropriate soundtrack can be found here [youtube.com]
  • except on Nintendo hardware with mario games

    the modern equivalent is tomb raider and splinter cell where you have to run and jump at the right time

    • Maybe you need to look at the resurgence 2D side scrolling has been experiencing over the last couple years, mostly thanks to indie developers.
  • The Street Fighter series has transitioned well in the last few years, The competitive SFIV scene is still very large with 25th anniversary tournaments being held across the world.

    Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike Online Edition and Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix have been released on PSN and Xbox360.

    I do not think the "lost their luster in HD" comment is actually the direct comparison you are implying.

    • by jonadab (583620)
      They should've done a mash-up MegaMan game, where MegaMan goes up against various other popular video game characters and picks up some of their most famous capabilities. He could fight Mario and gain the ability to kill (some kinds of) enemies by jumping on top of them, defeat Sonic and gain the ability to do that spinning thing, face down Commander Keen and get the pogo stick, and so on and so forth.
  • Anyone have any luck with WINE?

    It comes up and it recognizes the select button on my PS2 control plugged into a USB adapter as start, and that's all that works. It ignores most of my keyboard input and has no sound.

    In virtual box it has sound, recognizes my keyboard, but I can't do anything with my game control beyond cause it to make noise.

    Just geeking - want a Linux version.

    • I haven't tried in WINE but even in Windows it didn't recognize my controller fully the first time until I got into a stage (but it works fine since then, so I don't know). I used Enter to get into a stage, then Enter to pause, and then I think it was F2 to setup controller buttons for jump, fire and pause.
      • by pecosdave (536896)

        That semi-worked for me once or twice, but after I hit Enter or Select now it doesn't recognize anything but ESC from my keyboard. I rarely mess with WINE, don't really believe in it, making an exception for this. I'm trying out PlayOnLinux and using that to install all sorts of DirectX and other support to see if it just starts eventually.

  • I'm amazed (Score:5, Insightful)

    by neminem (561346) <neminem@@@gmail...com> on Wednesday December 19, 2012 @01:22PM (#42337697) Homepage

    A fan makes an awesome thing based on IP from a major company, tells that company about it, and their response is to help? Rather than suing the pants off the guy? What has the world *come* to?!

  • The game has a few great Easter Eggs as well. The only one I've tried and confirmed so far is the Guile's Stage music trick. In any level, pause, hold down jump, and press Up, Down, Down, Down. You'll get Guile's Theme in place of all background music until you reenter the code. There are also some codes out there to remove Mega Man's helmet, and to always have Ryu's Hadoken even if you haven't beaten him yet, but I haven't tried either yet. You can also face Akuma if you manage to get 3 Perfects.
  • I'm impressed with this game regardless of who made it. The Street Fighter character redraws are excellent, and the musical renditions are spot-on. I also appreciate the free-wheeling nature of the app itself; no installation process, no complicated menus, dead simple customization of controls and screen sizes, and no pointless online features. About the only thing that I'm not a huge fan of is charging the vanilla Mega Buster (it encourages the player to constantly hold down the shoot button, bleh) but tha
  • by IndustrialComplex (975015) on Wednesday December 19, 2012 @02:10PM (#42338125)

    Megaman was a fun game in its time, but it has not aged well for several reasons.

    Megaman was very close to being part of the genre known as Metroidvania, with exploration, upgrades, and platforming action, but for a variety of reasons, Mega-metroidvania never came to pass. I think part of the problem is that a lot of what originally worked in Megaman and our memories of the game, do not translate well to the modern style.

    Megaman is known for several reasons, and chief among them is its difficulty. However, difficulty in itself is not a virtue, we played the hell out of the original games because they were really all we had available. They were great games, and that is why we look back fondly on their difficulty, rather than with disdain. In addition, its linear nature just isn't as fun as it once was now that we have been exposed to Metroid and Symphony of the Night.

    So it isn't so much that Megaman couldn't work today, but that it gets squeezed out of the market. Nostalgia alone isn't enough for us to want to play an oddlooking robot platformer game when we have the option for so much more variety.

    If they want to bring Megaman back, they need to look into incorporating more of the exploration playstyle, more upgrade variety (hell it doesn't even need to upgrade, different is ok as long as it is fun). But a simple side scrolling shooter with marginally situational upgrades isn't going to hold modern gamers' attentions.

    • by Yosho (135835)

      Megaman was very close to being part of the genre known as Metroidvania, with exploration, upgrades, and platforming action, but for a variety of reasons, Mega-metroidvania never came to pass. I think part of the problem is that a lot of what originally worked in Megaman and our memories of the game, do not translate well to the modern style.

      Not at all. The Mega Man Zero series leaned strongly in that direction, and Mega Man ZX and ZX Advent were full-on Metroidvanias. Also see the Mega Man Legends and Battle Network series, although they borrowed more from traditional adventure games and RPGs.

      But a simple side scrolling shooter with marginally situational upgrades isn't going to hold modern gamers' attentions.

      Maybe what you mean is that they don't hold your attention? I think the success of Mega Man 9 and 10 has shown that there's still a significant portion of the gaming community that is just fine with linear stage progression.

    • by Tarlus (1000874)

      Megaman was very close to being part of the genre known as Metroidvania

      Are you talking about the general franchise, or the classic Megaman series? I know that the Megaman Zero and ZX series started to take on a Metroidvania characteristic, but the classic Megaman series is nowhere close to that.

  • Thanks Capcom! (Score:4, Interesting)

    by BTWR (540147) <(moc.oohay) (ta) (3robignacirema)> on Wednesday December 19, 2012 @03:06PM (#42338697) Homepage Journal
    I had to give up modding posts to put this up, but it NEEDS to be said how cool Capcom is for supporting this. You could have legally sued this guy's ass, but instead you didn't and thanked him for his efforts.

    Capcom - I am a 33 year old living in Manhattan (i.e. target demo). I was not planning to, but now I will *specifically* purchase a Capcom game as my next purchase as a way of letting you know that I support these measures. Maybe Resident Evil 6.
    • by mattack2 (1165421)

      I had to give up modding posts to put this up, but it NEEDS to be said how cool Capcom is for supporting this. You could have legally sued this guy's ass, but instead you didn't and thanked him for his efforts.

      How do you know he released it to ANYONE before showing it to them?

      If he made it for his own use only and made NO copies, could they (successfully) sue him if they somehow found out about it?

      Maybe he did it entirely for himself, and would have shelved it if they said no. (or changed all the graphics)

      • by BTWR (540147)
        You can sue anyone, for anything. Capcom has lawyers on retainer. This guy doesn't.
    • by pecosdave (536896)

      I recently purchased Mega Man IX from the WiiWare shop. Just like this one - it's brand new but old school.

  • I never did care for the 2D Mega Man (Rockman) games, Excercises in Forced Difficulty especially in jumps. And don't forget the "choose the right order for the levels or you can't meet the real boss" thing a couple of the games had. Total Guide Dant It's on those.

    The MML's are like a third person action-shooter-rpg thing thats a playable anime. Much more fun, but the hardcore fanbase disliked them, even if at their core they're better games than any 2D Mega Man.

  • by Digital Vomit (891734) on Wednesday December 19, 2012 @04:36PM (#42340057) Homepage Journal

    Pity poor Mega Man. The little blue robot boy with a gun for a hand

    He shot his dick off the first time he tried masturbating. Such a shame.

  • Clearly the ideal place for a modern Mega Man is in Super Smash Brothers. 3D look, but essentially a 2D game, and he would totally kick that damn Jigglypuff's ass...

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