Review by 16-BITTER

Reviewed: 04/03/17 | Updated: 02/06/18

The second Game Boy Mega Man is as cheap and disposable as the first one

Rockman World 2 (ロックマンワールド2) aka Mega Man II is the second portable installment in Capcom's venerable series of run 'n' gun platformers. Like the first one, it was outsourced to another development studio (in this case Biox) to approximate the style of the console games. Also like the first one, it does a reasonable job, but the result is still a highly ignorable micro-version of the NES Mega Man games that's pretty much only of interest to hardcore fan completionists.

Just as Rockman World 1 was a mashup of bosses and level elements from the first two home Mega Man games, Rockman World 2 is a mashup of the NES' Mega Man 2 and Mega Man 3, featuring level elements and design features from both but in new arrangements. The four Mega Man 2 bosses that weren't in Rockman World 1's final gauntlet have their own stages here, as well as four bosses from the third game. Unlike Rockman World 1 there aren't any new enemies and some of the rooms are basically copied and pasted from their original games. There is a unique final level, new boss robot Quint (like Rockman World 1's Enker), and a new final Dr. Wily boss, but otherwise things should be very familiar to those who've played the two NES games.

So once again, players run and gun their way through tight enemy packed stages with distinctive platforming challenges to battle bosses, steal their powers, and use them to make future battles easier. Unfortunately, they might have made it too easy this time around. Though Rockman World 2 is longer than its immediate portable predecessor, its difficulty has been retooled. While the first one might have been a hair too difficult, this one goes too far in the other direction. The addition of the Rush powers, slide, and Energy Tanks as well as a general lack of difficult sections (fewer disappearing block segments, for one) make this one a short sub-hour breeze compared to the first one.

It also suffers from the same general problems as most Game Boy conversions. The graphics lose their luster in the monochrome palette and the small, cramped screens make fights more annoying and detract from the visual impact of these games. The sound quality is also much worse, and even more so than the first game. Whereas Rockman World 1 had a few decent remixes of the NES games' music and a few new tracks, this game butchers all of its remixes and the handful of new tracks are awfully annoying, which is a real bummer in a series revered for its music.

Ultimately, there's no reason to play this version while the NES versions exist. It's too easy, the new elements aren't particularly exciting (the new bosses are wimps and the new jackhammer power is weak and underutilized even compared to the special mirror one from Rockman World 1!), and the feeling that its a cheap, portable cash-grab ripoff never leaves you for its duration.

Rating:   2.0 - Poor

Product Release: Mega Man II (US, 02/28/92)

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