RF Generation.  The Classic and Modern Gaming Databases.RF Generation.  The Classic and Modern Gaming Databases.

Posted on Feb 8th 2011 at 02:01:49 PM by (noiseredux)
Posted under Mega Man, SNES, Game Boy Color, PSP

Mega Man X was one of my absolute favorite SNES games. I don't think there's much need to explain that really. It successfully took everything awesome about the NES games and actually made it feel futuristic with its new 16-bit appearance. It introduced a highly detailed Mega Man, now known as X (duh) who not only looked awesome but who could now cling to walls, do a fast dash, and maybe most importantly could throw a Hadoken fireball. For these reasons, and many others Mega Man X remained a staple of my SNES-playing for a very long time. And when the Mega Man X Collection was released for Playstation 2 and GameCube, I was sure to seek out a copy immediately.

But what's interesting is that although many sequels of varying quality were released as part of the X series, the original and wonderful Mega Man X was never forgotten. Instead, it received two re-releases on portable consoles. Both of which were complete reinventions of the game, made to re-imagine the game with the actual handheld hardware in mind.

Mega Man Xtreme was released in 2001 for the Game Boy Color. It was the first of two Xtreme games released for the GBC that year. However where the second game was a completely original title that took full use of the GBC's new upgraded hardware, the first game was actually a backwards compatible GBC cart. This meant that although it was colorized, it still ran on the more primitive Game Boy hardware as well. Knowing this reveals just how impressive this demake really is. Essentially this a port of a SNES game to hardware less capable than the NES. Though the resolution is surely lower, the game really looks as good, or better than most NES Mega Man titles. The controls are a bit of a mixed bag, as they are sufficient, but certainly not as smooth as the SNES original.

In fairness it should be pointed out that this is not an apples-for-apples conversion of Mega Man X. Although it's very closely based on the original game, it also used bits and pieces of X2 along with a mish-mash of music. In theory it's actually a bit similar to the Game Boy Mega Man games that would combine bits from several of the NES releases to make a new game. Extras include unlockable levels and characters, which definitely add to the merits of another playthrough for fans of the X series. Though it's far from perfect, it's really a damn fine 8-bit portable Mega Man. Maybe it shouldn't be remembered quite as fondly as say the Game Boy's Mega Man V, but it certainly should not be forgotten either.

Five years later Capcom released another remake, Mega Man X: Maverick Hunter for the PSP. Unlike the toned down version on the GBC, this one would be completely rebuilt from the ground up to show off the capabilities of the PSP and see what the game would have looked like had it been released all these years later. The game features polygons instead of sprites, full dialogue instead of text boxes, and the addition of anime cutscenes to help the story's momentum. And although none of these new features seem necessary, the game continues to grow on me.

For instance, though I'll always prefer sprites over polygons, I can't help but be a bit taken aback by the intricate details that were put into the backgrounds. Though spoken dialogue can be a drag, it is kind of fun to hear these back-and-forth's betwixt X and his enemies. And to be totally honest, the anime scenes are really quite beautiful. Though I won't for a second say that I would prefer the PSP version over the original SNES game, I can certainly recommend it for fans of the series looking for a new and interesting way to experience it. Although I assume the real target demographic were younger gamers who may not have the same fondness for 2D sprites.

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Great write up. I wasnt even aware of the GBC version. I'm not much of a handheld guy, but would definately grab either one if I saw them for a good price. Definately a great game and I'd be up for trying it out on another platform.

Also nice use of the word betwixt!! Cram as many x-es into that article as possible!
I, on the other hand, was unaware there was a PSP remake. The screens you put up look terrible, especially when there's the SNES version to compare to. Are the controls as sharp as it is on the SNES? For some reason, I keep thinking whenever they remake a game in 3D, the controls become floatier or something.
@toadhall -- the polygons are certainly no match for the original SNES sprites. That's for damn sure. The controls DO feel a bit off, but that I think is more a product of trying to adjust to a 2.5D view of a 2D game. It can throw you off, especially when yr so used to the original release. I in no way think that the PSP release is superior to the SNES original.

That being said, it is fun to play through. It's fun to see the liberties taken, and it actually feels a great deal more challenging to me.
i have all 3 versions of mega man x well can't find the GBC one but its  somewhere.) I prefer the SNES version too, but Maveric Hunter was a really good remake I think. Reason why is because the voice overs (although they are kind of hoaky) were a nice spin on it, also the  short anime feature on there was pretty cool. Nice article love Mega Man X.

@toadhall - the controls are very nice for this you should try it out. Its pretty cheap nowadays $9.99 pre-owned last I saw at Gamestop, probably $19.99 new, but there's always amazon & ebay so yeah.
Well, colour me intrigued! I'll definitely check it out. Loved the original X.

...just let me get a PSP first...
Maverick Hunter X was amazing. I do prefer the sprites, but being able to play the same game in a completely souped up version felt absolutely great. I had a blast replaying the entire game as Vile. You basically had a machine gun, along with other unlockable artillery used to take down Mega Man.

It is now in the hands of my younger sister, who has been frustratingly addicted to it ever since.

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