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Platform: PC, PS4, PS3, Xbox One, Xbox 360, OS X, Linux, Wii U, Vita, 3DS, Shield
Developer: Comcept, Inti Creates
Genre: Action, Platform
Greetings folks! If by any chance you haven’t caught up with the news yet, seven days have passed since Mega Man’s spiritual successor, Mighty Number 9, was released. And man, the reception has been quite unforgiving. Everyone is totally shitting on the game- you can check on Kotaku, IGN, and Polygon to confirm that. It’s been dubbed by many not as the worst game of the year, but the most disappointing.
The source of hatred mainly lies on the issues it had as a Kickstarter project. What happened was pretty much a train-wreck that spanned for over 3 years, and I can’t blame the supporters who invested their time and money to feel that way. The direction the developers took and the decisions they made are inexcusable.
BUT. Despite all the drama going on- the broken promises, the release delays, the embarrassing trailers, I believe Mighty Number 9 still deserves a fair and objective review. A review for what the game offers versus how much it costs, as a finished product in and of itself regardless of its pre-release issues . The shitstorm going around will be unaccounted for because that’s just between the developers and the Kickstarter funders. There are other people around, like me, who don’t care about how the game came to be, and just want to see if spending a certain amount of money for a certain something, like this game, will give me hours enjoyment. Or not.
The main plot is very much Mega Man: in the futuristic year 20xx, a mysterious computer virus causes the robots from all over the world to go berserk, and it is up to Mighty Number 9, nicknamed Beck, to save the day. His creator, Dr. White, deduces that to point out the cause of the virus, Beck must disable and rescue the professor’s other creations Mighty Numbers 1-8.
Gameplay includes what you would expect of a classic side-scrolling 3D platformer- you shoot enemies, you can jump, dash, and there are challenging obstacles that may require practice and some strategizing. The new stuff they added to to give it a twist would be absorbing enemies by dashing through them when they get damaged enough- this gives Beck a temporary power boost of sorts, and this is also probably why the dashing is unlimited even when airborne- this enables for a fast-paced gameplay.
There are 12 playable levels in total, with 8 different boss characters that will each give you a unique weapon when defeated, and like in Mega Man, each type will have certain advantages over certain types of enemies.
I finished the main story within 6 hours, with me being stuck on the last boss for 2 whole hours- man was it a pain defeating her. But for the veteran side-scrollers out there, I bet they can even finish the normal campaign mode within 2-3 hours.
Rather than focusing on survivability in a single difficulty with the sole aim of defeating the bad guys- it’s now scaled into four: normal, hard, hyper and the one-shot death maniac mode. Make no mistake- the harder modes are definitely challenging and frustrating to the average player, like me, but whether you clear the stage on maniac mode or not, there’s another grading system where you’ll need to rack up points as much as you can to get the highest ranking.
This ranking system may promote replayability, but achieving the highest scores, by the way, currently earns you nothing except accolades to brag about. With this, the levels have been a bit more simplistic and easier compared to the stages in Mega Man. Speedrunners will find this game a fun play.
Other than the campaign mode we have the EX Mode where we can do all sorts of more difficult stuff like the co-op Challenge Mode, Boss Rush and Online Race Battle.
The graphics and animation are quite plain at best, especially in the cutscenes where you’ll see how poorly-detailed the characters are when zoomed in. With regards to voice acting, you’d want to change to the Japanese dub in the options menu because when using the English dub, people intentionally stutter too much and talk too slow, as if you’re in a children’s cartoon.
It’s a bit annoying to the ears. What’s also irritating is that their lips do n’t move when they talk. One can’t help but think that it really feels they got a bit lazy on this part. There were also minor bugs I encountered while playing like getting stuck but it wasn’t really game-breaking so I guess it’s no big deal.
Speaking of graphics, the pepperoni pizza explosions really make me cringe. But sadly you’ll get used to it when you play the game long enough.
If there’s anything really good in Mighty No. 9, is the music. Other than the background songs being nice to listen to, they’re also similar to the old Mega Man tunes- Mighty No. 9 at least succeeds in this aspect. If only they could make it louder- I find the background music too faint even on the exciting parts.
Now the big question is: does Mighty No. 9 live up to its spiritual successor? I have mixed feelings on this one, but for the most part, no, it doesn’t. It’s just missing a lot of things that made Mega Man Mega Man. For one, the game is too short. Aside from the 8 Mighty Number stages, there’s only the introduction stage and three more extra levels in the end. And these are regular stages- there’s no fighting the same old bosses in succession, no new extra bosses, nor any additional cutscenes that will immense you further into the story. If anything there’s the occasional voice over dialogue. Having only that to hold onto is a bit sad. The only saving grace is that gameplay is challenging on the higher difficulties.
Overall, Mighty No. 9 is an averagely okay game. Is it worth the $20 price tag for the PS4 and Xbox One? No. I personally wouldn’t buy it. But $10 from Steam? Yes, very much recommended. It’s not like people made this game with absolutely no effort at all, and as I’ve said before- it’s not that sub-par of a game. People may be shitting on it due to various reasons (mostly internal unrelated ones), but it’s not 100% crap. If you still can’t decide, you can always wait for a sale. With the game and its developers in such deep shit right now, there’s a big possibility they’ll be selling it for less. Who knows.
Anyway, if you agree or disagree with me, let me know in the comments section below. Thanks for watching and happy gaming!