This review is written by Dante Mathis.
Mega Man X was one of my earliest experiences in video gaming, even more so than Mario or Banjo Kazooie, and it’s for that reason I’ll likely never be able to produce an unbiased review of the game. However, my love for the Mega Man series expands well beyond one simple game which I am too fond of. A recent game which I began to step into was Mega Man X2, which I was sadly never introduced to as a child.
The Mega Man X series, while detested by many at the time of its release, is a series I will always look back on in hindsight, as the first game to be released by the time I was born was X4, considered by many to be the overall decline of the franchise, when they made the transition to compact discs, and introduced cut scenes which snowballed into full fledged animated episodes by the later games. Yet, if I were to give my solid impression of the initial release which kicked off the revitalized series, I would give it only the highest praise, something I can safely vest into the sequel, which took every expanse that the original made upon the prior Mega Man games, and added to it.
Mega Man X2 continues the habit of having more animal based robot masters, as opposed to the much more classic robot masters who are all for the most part android in nature. This game takes the standard mech suit given to the player in X, and introduces the hovercraft, as well as a variety of armor upgrades giving the player new abilities, such as the mid-air dash, and the all elusive one hit KO Shoryuken of Street Fighter fame. The story continues the saga of Maverick Overlord Sigma, one of my most remembered child-hood villains. In spite of a weak development when compared to the other games, his all imposing danger reminded me of Gigyas, but without the intangibility aspect.
The story has a split depending on if you gather a number of parts of your old ally Zero, however the fork returns back to a single linear story following, so there’s no fear of alternate endings requiring a second, more tediously monitored play through, however it also invites enough entertainment for multiple runs on its own, without the need of collecting every little thing, if that’s not your particular interest. The game is filled with creative enemies suited to the environment of each level, and the bosses are all unique, and enthralling to fight.
They keep in touch with the classic chain of logical weaknesses, but if you screw up like myself and forget to check the walk through until halfway through the game, I’ve found that the heavy powered mega-buster works fairly well for a strong portion of the bosses, and the enemies won’t be too much of a hassle working with the bare basics.
All in all, if you go in headstrong, with nothing but confidence and have a fantastic experience, and on the far side, if you play it safe and use the bosses weaknesses to your advantage, you’ll still have an experience which is equally, and in some senses more fulfilling, especially if you’re a hardcore completionist.