Review by Sour DieseL
"The most talked about game in the series!"
After the success of the first Mega Man, Capcom sought to continue the series and ended up delivering in the best possible way. Mega Man 2 took what made the first Mega Man so great, and merely added to it without cutting out any of the bad. Many proclaim this to be the best game in the franchise, others say it's overrated. Because of that, this game still receives a massive amount of attention and it's presence just can't be ignored. Mega Man 2 made the series even more popular and has gone down in history as the most talked about Mega Man.
Story: 10/10: Much like the first game, the plot is simple but effective. Dr. Albert Wily has escaped from jail and has built eight Robot Masters of his own to take over Monsteropolis and eventually the whole world, as opposed to re-programming more of Dr. Light's robots and using them in his schemes. Mega Man must once again don his helmet and take down the evil doctor. This time, Dr. Light has created some useful items to help Mega Man in his quest. These Robot Master that Mega Man must face are more sinister and deadly because they were made for one purpose: destruction, as opposed to those in the first game who were built to help mankind when it came to various hard to achieve tasks. So take control of Mega Man and put that wiley Dr. Wily in jail!....again!
Gameplay: 10/10: This game, unlike the first, allows you to choose your difficulty setting at the beginning. This is only in the US version though. Once you choose your difficulty setting, you're presented with eight stages to choose from in the form of a mugshot of the corresponding Robot Master for that stage. Once a level starts, you're in a side-scrolling shoot-em-up that requires a whole lot of platforming and careful jumps, so be prepared! Know that spikes will kill you instantly upon being hit, as will falling into a pit of lava. Mega Man 2 introduces a new element to the gameplay that is still seen to this day, energy tanks. Finding one of these will allow you to use it in the pause menu and refill your life gauge completely. You're only allowed to hold four of them though, so use them wisely! Upon beating a Robot Master, you'll receive their power. Once you've defeated them, you can use their weapon as you see fit, provided you have enough energy to use it, as the weapons have their own special energy bar right next to your life bar. Each Robot Master is weak to another Robot Master's power-up, so you'll have to try each one of them out to see what works. Some are pretty obvious, while others aren't. There is however, one weapon in this game that's incredibly overpowered, but you'll have to figure that out for yourself. Beating certain Robot Masters will also grant you the ability to use special items given to you by Dr. Light, one of which is a rocket that you can ride on to get over large or difficult platforms. Upon beating all of the Robot Masters, you'll begin the "Wily Stages". These levels don't have your typical boss fights and are often against opponents much larger than yourself. They don't give you any kind of powers though so you'll have to use the weapons gained from beating the Robot Masters to destroy them faster (and for one of them, it's absolutely required to use one of their weapons).
Sound: 10/10: Mega Man 2 is known for having perhaps the most original and catchy music in the entire series. It's all head-bobbingly and foot-tappingly good. There are some critics who claim that it doesn't help with the atmosphere of the game, but it really is fantastic. This game's music has seen more remixes and covers than you can shake a stick at, definitely the most out of the entire series, and that's pretty good considering how good some songs from some of the other games are. While the entire series is littered with good tracks, Mega Man 2's is definitely the most popular because of all the attention it gets. The soundtrack by itself is just plain good to jam to though, what else can I say?
Graphics: 10/10: Nothing beats good old classic 8-bit Mega Man. At the time, these graphics were simply amazing, giving the first party Nintendo games a run for their money. It was around the best you could get at the time graphics-wise until Super Mario Bros. 3 came out which was really close to being Super Nintendo quality itself. Capcom still makes Mega Man games today and have tried getting the series into a 16-bit and 32-bit world, but it just resulted in clunky gameplay, and over sized sprites as well as environments meshing together, sometimes making it difficult to tell the difference between the foreground and the background. I remember that the case for this game said "Hi-Res Graphics!". It may make you laugh now, but back then, they were pretty darn good.
Overall: 10/10: The most talked about game in the series, no question. Some say overrated, some say it's the best in the series. It's definitely something that you'll have to decide for yourself, don't let the haters or the fan boys sway you. Play it and make your own opinion. It's pretty cheap on the virtual console, and $5 is a negligible amount for a video game, even in today's economy. So go ahead and buy it and see what you think!
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 06/07/10
Game Release: Mega Man 2 (US, 06/30/89)
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