OK, Ill admit it. I never really
got into Mega Man. While everyone else was having the time of their collective lives with
the little blue man, I was reading or something. This was my first exposure to this
legendary series, and, despite the corny name and departure from the typical action genre
(this games an RPG, baby), it was a good one.
The plot is kind of
youre this boy, LAN (geddit?), who goes to school hangs out with friends, just like
any other kid, except when I grew up we didnt have Mega Men patrolling the net to
keep it safe. Kids these days
You, as LAN, control Mega Man on the web, fighting and
destroying every virus he comes across. Eventually you become Net Battlers, the official
city team of virus fighters.
Did I mention how
badly translated everything is? You know how in some RPGs you play just to see the next
cool FMV? In this game you continue to see the next butchered line. I love when a guy is
about to get blown up by a bomb after pissing off the Net Don. He hears ticking, wonders
what it is, and says (and I quote), "Oh, that." If I were this man
Id be screaming my lungs off and in need of new pants, but no, he sees his own
demise smiling on him, and hes as cool as a lake. I just love that stuff. So
you, as LAN, have your normal everyday life and the action packed life of Mega Man going
on at the same time. Your friends have Mega Man-Sequa creatures as well, helping you out
from time to time.
This makes for some
interesting gameplay. In an early part of the game, you have to save your friend from a
haywire cyber-bathtub (apparently, in the future, everything has microchips in it
tubs, statues, models of bears, everything). LAN cant get to her because there is
too much steam in the way. What does our fussy hero do? He jacks-into the heating system
and has Mega Man fix it. Its kind like a buddy movie, only its not.
gameplay, the battling is done superbly. The ground is divided into 18 squares on which
you and the enemy can dance around (9 squares for you, 9 for them). It makes for some
fancy footwork when you have multiple baddies lining you up in their crosshairs.
Memorizing the patterns is a must, as is choosing the right weapon. At intervals during
the fight (every 20 seconds or so), you can get new battle chips. The chips are one time
use weapons (not that you can run out of them though) that do everything from fire a
cannon to chop out a part of the arena. Often the battle devolves into frantically
avoiding shots until you can get some more weapons. Not incredibly involved, but very
intense. When you go up against the bosses, you will be screaming at your little GBA for
cheating. I think the difficulty is a good thing, but those who like games to be a bit on
the easy side should probably back think twice before buying.
The best aspect of
this game is just how addictive it is. Even when I got frustrated, I was always back
within an hour. Not many titles do that to me anymore, so its a refreshing change,
especially on a portable system. Its just a very fun game, but one that I dont
think will sell too well, which is a shame.
much else to say about the game. Graphics are average; sound is average; control is
average. Its the gameplay that gives this game 4 stars. Mega Man Battle Network 2 is
single-handedly responsible for reinvigorating my love for RPGs. When was the last time
you heard someone say that about an RPG?