"The final NES Mega Man title has the series going out on a bad note."

Playing through the first six Mega Man titles was a true treat to the video game senses. It's a damn shame that the series had to go out on such a bad note in the NES. Mega Man 6 isn't on the level of Mega Man 4, but it comes close.

The game begins with a man named Mr. X hijacking eight of the world's most powerful robots from a robot tournament, and threatening to destroy the world with them. As usual, Mega Man is the only character capable of stopping the eight robots masters and saving the world. You are then thrust into the boss selection screen common to every Mega Man game up to this point. Sadly, Mega Man 6 is almost as disappointing as Mega Man 4 right from the start.

Mega Man 6 has one thing going for it, and that is the level design. As is the norm in Mega Man games, the levels are all unique to the boss of the level in terms of environment, and they all feature a ton of death traps, bottomless pits, difficult jumps, and hard-to-kill enemies. The problem with all of this is that there is nothing within Mega Man 6's design that sets it apart from all of the previous games in the series. If anything, Mega Man 6 shows that the days of Mega Man glory on the NES were past their prime. Yes the level designs, music, and graphics were all good, but they didn't jump out of the TV the way they did in past titles. To me, Mega Man 6 played as a sort of last hurrah for the series on the NES. The bright side would be that despite all of this, Mega Man 6 does not come close to being as bad as Mega Man 4 on an overall scale.

A perfect example of this would be the bosses themselves. Even with a weakened Mega Buster, most of the bosses in this game are complete jokes, right down to the last form of Dr. Wily. Look at Plant Man, who you can literally beat almost standing still. All you need to do is stand on the left side of the screen. Plant Man will practically never come close to you, and all you need to do is blast him with the Mega Buster while jumping over the Plant Shield. Or what about Ice Man? He has nothing outside of an attack that is easily avoided and a pathetic attempt to collide with Mega Man by rolling at him and bouncing off of a single wall. Mega Man 6 suffers from the same problem that Mega Man 4 does in that the AI of most of the bosses are absolutely atrocious, and even when you get a boss that is mildly hard, they are still too easy. Look at Knight Man, who has a shield which doesn't allow you to hit him with the Mega Buster at all. You must either wait for him to drop the shield, or watch your shots all bounce off of him. This would have been a nice challenge if you couldn't take Yamato Man's weapon and hit him whenever you choose. On an overall scale, even the tougher bosses play like complete whimps, and it leads to an overall disappointing playing experience. But hey, at least the Mega Buster's charge is interrupted should Mega Man get hit.

Overall, the only game in the NES series worse than Mega Man 6 is Mega Man 4, but it's close. For every fault that the bosses have in Mega Man 6, they're even worse in Mega Man 4. That's the big difference in my eyes.


Reviewer's Score: 5/10 | Originally Posted: 08/18/04


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