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Mega Man 2 (NES) artwork

Mega Man 2 (NES) review

"Mega Man 2 wasn't the start of the (some would call great) Mega Man series, however, it did improve slightly upon the original. It offers a new cast of characters, but still keeps the traditional elements that made the original so popular."

Mega Man 2 contains all the features necessary a successful game in the platforming and adventure genre. Mega Man 2 wasn't the start of the (some would call great) Mega Man series, however, it did improve slightly upon the original. It offers a new cast of characters, but still keeps the traditional elements that made the original so popular.

In Mega Man 2, you once again play the role of the Blue Bomber, a.k.a. Rockman, a.k.a. Mega Man. That darn Dr. Wily has gone and kidnapped Dr. Light again, and it's your job to go and save him once again! Before you do that though, you have to get through Wily's bodyguards, acquiring new powers in the process. The story itself isn't anything new or remarkable; replace ''princess'' with ''old professor dude'' and Mega Man 2 reads like any two-bit role playing game story.

It's in the gameplay where Mega Man 2's strongest points lie. Almost anyone can learn how to play the game in five to ten minutes, but it can take a considerable amount of time to learn the intracacies of each stage.

In Mega Man 2, you venture in traditional platform style, left to right, right to left, defeating any monsters in your way with your trusty arm cannon. After blasting through a stage, you face a very appropriatly named end boss, such as Quick Man (because he's quick) or Bubble Man (because he uses bubbles).

When you beat the boss, you gain access to their weaponry, a very neat feature indeed. This weaponry can be used in turn on other bosses, allowing you to defeat them much easily. However, outside weaponry (anything that isn't your arm gun) requires fuel to fire, and can be drained quite quickly. So use it in moderation.

The game ends if you take too much damage from enemies. Your life is kept track of on the side of the screen; various enemies take away various amounts of life. Life can be replenished through the use of small or large pellets that enemies drop, or by larger energy tanks scattered throughout levels. Weapon energy can also be replenished through dropped pellets, but they're dropped less frequently then life.

The difficulty of the game is a bit harder than that of the original Mega Man. There's a few more puzzles that require more thinking to solve than just pure button mashing, and the enemies themself replenish themselves faster than in the first game. They also attack in less predictable patterns, especially bosses. However, Mega Man 2 is still just barely above average in terms of difficulty, and most gamers won't have trouble with the opening eight bosses.

The only gameplay issue I have with the transition from the first to second game of the series is the abscence of the point counter. Sure, it's not really necessary, but it was fun all the same to receive points for defeating enemies. It wasn't hurting anything, so why not leave it in?

Graphically, Mega Man 2 is a significant improvement over the first installment, but it's relatively equal with other games released during the time. The graphics are bright colors for the most part; however, there is some very noticable slowdown when the screen becomes too cluttered with enemies or objects. Particularily those damn ostriches.

Musically, Mega Man 2 is one of the few Nintendo games I can stand. For some odd reason, the blips and blops of the technoish beat appeal to me. You can't help but bob your head in time with the music, as Mega Man makes death defying jump after death defying jump. The sound effects are also pretty good. Each weapon has its own distinctive sound, although the sound of Mega getting hit can get on the nerves.

Overall, Mega Man 2 doesn't offer a substantial improvement over the original Mega Man. However, it does provide just what the doctor ordered for the NES at the time - high quality software from a respected developer and a respected series.

sgreenwell's avatar
Community review by sgreenwell (Date unavailable)

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