XI
you are not logged in
Review

Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 Review

The Blue Bomber strikes back.

When we reviewed Mega Man Legacy Collection two years ago, the world was in a different place. Mighty No.9 had not come out yet and Mega Man as a character had largely been forgotten outside of re-releases. It was disappointing to see that a separate collection needed to be made to incorporate the other games in the series. But the fact of the matter is that the only new things Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 features are the four games included.

That’s a bit of a generalisation, after all the challenge modes and special features that made Mega Man Legacy Collection a decent compilation are included here – just focusing on Mega Man 7 – 10. On top of this, Mega Man 9 & 10 had challenges of their own in the base game released last generation digitally, which have been included for posterity’s sake. It’s hard therefore to rag too much on the new content being samey when it’s based on the newer games.

One odd thing that made me think Capcom had made a mistake with the localisation is that the overall collection’s options menu language is Japanese by default. This doesn’t seem to affect Mega Man 7, 8, or 10; but Mega Man 9 was initially displaying with Japanese text. It’s a simple fix in the options menu, but it was not immediately obvious at the time that this was the problem.

Rather than allowing for players to create save states like in the first Legacy Collection, Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 opts to remember Checkpoints instead. This makes for a significantly more compelling challenge as you can’t just cheese your way through the game with Save States, yet it is fair in that those who want to avoid game overs can just load up a checkpoint and keep their lives intact. It’s a great compromise.

The games themselves feature some of the best and worst of the franchise. For example, Mega Man 7 is definitely a hard game but showed that classic Mega Man could work on the Super Nintendo. It introduced new characters, including the edgiest of 90’s characters – Bass; as well as a host of new robot masters and secrets.

Mega Man 8 on the other hand is at times laughably bad. For those keeping score, Mega Man 8 initially had two versions – one for the Sony PlayStation and one for the Sega Saturn. Both had minor differences, such as enemy placement, but the Saturn had improved visual effects and a couple of extra bosses. Capcom took the lazy option of using the PlayStation version which is understandable given the finicky nature of the Saturn, but it still feels inferior to those who have played it.

This of course also means you get those legendarily bad animated cut-scenes where everyone sounds awful, especially Doctor Light who sounds like he’s nursing a bottle of moonshine. However you do also get a beautiful looking 2D adventure that, while a different art style, suits the franchise and also features some more versatile moves in Mega Man’s arsenal. There’s a little bit of missed potential with Mega Man 8, but the game is there, warts and all.

A long hiatus occurred after Mega Man 8, but in the last generation there was a trend for retro-inspired platformers that was so great, Capcom couldn’t refuse the call. Mega Man 9 took things back to 8-bit visuals and limited Mega Man’s abilities back to his Mega Man 2 days. This version comes complete with the DLC that was released, though it isn’t immediately available so you’ll need to play through the game to unlock them. It’s a good call-back and well worth playing.

Mega Man 10 is also worth playing as it includes the Bass DLC which makes Bass a playable character upon playing through the game, as well as some really good level design and Proto Man unlocked by default. Other challenges are included as well, which in the case of the three “Mega Man Killers” unlock three new weapons for Mega Man to use in the main game. DLC for both Mega Man 9 and 10 not being available from the start is annoying though.

It’s quite an extensive collection and does plug most of the gaps – however there is one game missing: Mega Man & Bass. This was originally released on the Super Famicom in Japan only and used the Mega Man 8 art style but put it on a cartridge. It’s perhaps not official canon and was hard as hell, but it was a technical marvel with some fantastic level design. It was eventually ported to the GameBoy Advance, but the screen was so crunched up it was virtually unplayable.

Mega Man & Bass’s omission from the collection signifies that Capcom didn’t want to go all in here. Fans have already translated the Super Famicom version years ago and Capcom did port it to the GameBoy Advance, so the fact they didn’t want to commit to putting this gem of a game in the collection means that the Mega Man Legacy Collection is incomplete. It’s a huge shame and a massively missed opportunity.

What’s Good:

  • All four games included are for the most-part decent
  • Plethora of extras for Mega Man fans
  • Challenges mix things up nicely
  • Saving checkpoints is a fairer way to open up the games

What’s Bad:

  • Mega Man & Bass is not included
  • Basic version of Mega Man 8 was used
  • DLC items not available from the start
  • Mega Man 8’s voice acting is legendarily bad

I did like going back through the four games on offer with Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 overall. The features included are exactly the same as the first Legacy Collection and the way saving works now makes for a fairer challenge that doesn’t make things too easy. It’s just a shame the enhanced version of Mega Man 8 wasn’t used and Mega Man & Bass was not included, as it gives the impression Capcom’s heart wasn’t quite in it. It’s a decent collection, but plays things far too safe.

Score: 7/10

Version Tested: PlayStation 4

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Latest Comments