Review by Vargas

"Now this is how a compilation is made."

After what seems like endless delays, Capcom and Atomic Planet have finally released the Mega Man Anniversary Collection. This collection contains the first eight Mega Man games and two arcade games. There are a couple of extras but nothing to go crazy about, the the pieces of music are a bit scratchy and the "anime" video is of a pretty bad quality.

Graphics (6)- Do not come into this compilation expecting something out of the last couple of years. This is retro all the way. Plain backgrounds and blank character faces make their home in the first six Mega Man games, with the graphics improving in the last two Mega Man games and the arcade games. Not many people will be looking for Final Fantasy X style graphics so don't let the score get you mad.

Sound (8)- The soundtracks to Mega Man 1-3 have always been great and just get better with the inclusion of a couple of remixed tracks. They retain the feeling of the original tracks without making you scratch your head. It would have been nice if Capcom/Atomic Planet remixed all he music though.

Gameplay (9)- Some parts of the games in the series are still annoying and it doesn't help that you have to start over from the start of the Wily levels if you quite the game and continue later. A welcome addition is the auto-saving after each boss battle, it makes the series a bit more pick up and play unlike the original versions.

Everything that you loved and hated about the original games after left intact. The disappearing blocks, those annoying jumping enemies that knock off half of your life if touched, it is all in here. Something that was borrowed from the re-release versions of the Rock Man games is the Navi mode. You will get very obvious hints from your friends and get pointed in the right direction if you come to a fork in the road. This mode isn't without it's own problems though. Some of the text reads as if it was written by a chimp and you will sometimes think to yourself "what were they thinking when they wrote this?" It is a nice addition that also gives you a new life bars and a new stat screen, at least in Mega Man 1-3.

To keep the games true to their original renditions Capcom has opted not to include things like the slide and the chargeable buster in the original games.

Replay Value (9)-With ten games included you are sure to play for quite awhile. Every time you meet certain conditions you will unlock items in the secret menu like the aforementioned "anime" episode. You will also get a couple of art collections and some remixed tunes which don't sound so good.

You cannot go wrong with this collection. If you love the Mega Man series you owe it to yourself to get this game. It is not a perfect collection by any means but for thirty dollars you aren't losing much.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 06/26/04

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