Review by Writer

Reviewed: 05/14/01 | Updated: 05/14/01

Enter the Mega Buster

The NES was quite the system in its day. When I think of the great 2D games on the system, Mega Man 4 comes up as one of the system's best games. While it wasn't a great deal different from Capcom's previous efforts, there's no denying the fact that that fourth Mega Man outing was one of the best.

The story of MM4 is really nothing groundbreaking. Dr. Cossack has built eight destructive robots bent on taking over the world. Having save the world three times in the past, Mega Man takes up the challenge of stopping the vile Doctor. This time, however, Dr. Light has done some work on Mega Man and has given him an upgrade to his arm cannon that will make his blaster more powerful. This new weapon is called the Mega Buster. By holding down the B button, you can charge up Mega Man's arm cannon for several seconds and release a powerful blast that is more damaging than Mega Man's normal shot. This makes the default weapon far more useful.

Some of the robots for the fourth installment have some funky names (Dust Man anyone?), but lame titles aside, MM4 still packs rock solid 2D gameplay that made the first three games so great to begin with. As usual, you have the choice of picking which robot master you wish to eliminate first. After progressing through his level, you'll take him on in a battle to obtain his power, which may be useful for defeating another boss. Some of the robot masters like Toad Man are slower than a snail. Others like Ring Man move at blistering speeds. Thankfully, controlling Mega Man is cake thanks to the easy controls. Megan runs, jumps and slides with ease. Any wrong moves you make on the controls are your own fault. Mega Man's faithful dog, Rush returns to lend a helping paw and some hidden items are thrown into the gameplay mix as well, which makes for some backtracking it you want to achieve these hidden goods.

Capcom has made Mega Man shine visually on the NES three times in the past and MM4 is no exception. Easily one of the best looking games on Nintendo's 8-bit console, each level is detailed just right. Bright Man's level is just that, well lit until the lights are turned off that is. Pharaoh Man's stage is a pyramid, complete with quick sand, and the beginning of Toad Man's stage is littered with rain drops.

The tunes in MM4 can't be beat. Each song is catchy and humable. Just writing this review makes me think about the game's music, but I guess that's pretty common for any game. Bright Man's theme rocks and is probably one of the best MM tunes ever.

All told, Mega Man 4 just feels right. It's a great game and one of Capcom's better efforts as this series started to slide a bit after this title. You can't call yourself a Mega Man fan and not posses this title. Newbies shouldn't be afraid to go out and hunt this one down either.

Rating:   4.0 - Great

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