Apr. 8th, 2017

kjorteo: Pixel-style portrait of Celine's face (Default)
I'm marking this as "complete" even though beating the game as Mega Man unlocks an entire alternate bonus "start a new game only play as this other character instead" mode which I'm kind of interested in doing, but... eh, I'll think about it, keep it as a background process for now, and write another complete entry for the alt-character run if I ever actually go through with (and finish) that.

Mega Man Unlimited is an unlicensed indie fan Mega Man game that miraculously has not been C&D'd yet despite having been up and fairly well-known since 2013. I am actually extremely late to the party, which means I had access to a few quality of life improvements that would make the 1.0 veterans go off on a back-in-my-day tangent (charged shots, the ability to exit the stage from the menu, slightly different block placement in a few rooms, way better music for Rainbow Man and a few other stages, seriously RoahmMythril's MMU run is almost hard to watch at parts because oh my God that's what Rainbow Man's stage used to sound like?)

Gameplay is sort of a hybrid of Mega Man 3 and 4 (slide, no charged shots by default but you can optionally add them in now, MM4 and beyond version of the Rush Jet) only, being a Mega Man classic series fan game, the difficulty starts out at "fuck you" and as you-the-player get better it slowly levels out to... I'll peg it somewhere around Mega Man 9, from what I remember of that one (it was a while ago.) There is a severe case of Checkpoint Starvation, which can make some of the more instantaneously deadly situations (spike drops, tricky jumps over bottomless pits, etc.) feel more unfair in this game than even the same obstacle would be in other Mega Man games. It's no fun mess up one "jump too low and you won't make it across the pit, but too high and you hit the spikes on the ceiling" jump just before the boss and then half to do like half the stage again.

Getting the Rush Jet early helped shortcut my way around a lot of the bullshit, but even then, the game did spring some rather cruel trial-and-error tricks on you from time to time. Example: Occupied Wily Fortress Stage 1, see middle horizontal stretch of the overall S-shaped level? You have to go from right to left on the Rush Jet. This is the MM4 version that always moves forward, so this part is basically a side-scrolling shoot-em-up. If you try to get that first energy capsule on the pink column near the bottom of the screen, which you'll see before the second pink column that comes up to near the top of the screen even scrolls onto the screen, then you'll be too low to react in time, probably hit the wall and die, and that's a trip all the way back to start.

Still, other than that it was fun!

Story is... well, I was told going in that it was meant to bridge the Mega Man classic and X series, and the title screen looks like this, so right away I figured someone must like the cataclysm theory. 8 9 10 Robot Masters (counting a secret one and an extra one added later) have gone berserk and started attacking everyone, claiming to work for Dr. Wily, yet strangely Dr. Wily himself swears up and down that he had nothing to do with it this time and even volunteers to work with Dr. Light to figure out what's going on. They got as far as discovering that there was some sort of virus that was altering their programming (uh oh) but then a mysterious shadowy robot broke in and kidnapped Dr. Wily, and now Mega Man has to go beat everyone and save the day. For a classic series Mega Man game, it draws a surprising amount of mystery to "wait, is this all Dr. Wily again?" such that I feel like answering that here would actually be kind of a spoiler, which... that's never a spoiler in Mega Man games. (If you didn't know from the start who Mr. X was in MM6, shame on you.) So that's kind of a remarkable feat right there.

All in all, it's very well made. Great graphics, excellent music (especially in later builds where some of the original songs were improved RAINBOW MAN I'M LOOKING AT YOU.) A+ would recommend if you're into being beaten down by hard classic Mega Man games.

Edit: Please continue on to the COMPLETE entry for the MMU alternate character run as I took that difficulty and snapped it in half with an overpowered REVENGE character. It was very cathartic.
kjorteo: Pixel-style portrait of Celine's face (FAIL)
Because if I'm stealing [livejournal.com profile] xyzzysqrl's COMPLETE record-keeping concept, I may as well steal the NOT COMPLETE side too. I have a zillion games in the backlog, some have been languishing almost as long as I've been alive, but I do feel the need to make special record-keeping note of the ones where I tried them and now (just like the COMPLETE entries) I am done with this game.

So, what's the first official failure of this project? Well, I almost didn't bother counting this one because I NOPE'd out of it in under ten minutes, but... well, that's about how long Essence.exe would have been if I hadn't gotten stuck, and that one got a COMPLETE entry, so what the hell.

MANOS: The Hands of Fate is a tongue-in-cheek indie game based off the infamous Mystery Science Theater 3000-featured movie of the same name. Apparently they throw in some other MST3K miscellany to pad things out (there's a boss fight with Ro-Man from Robot Monster according to this trailer?? Geez, I didn't get that far.) It's just... well....

  • 1) I got the Android version as part of a Humble Mobile Bundle and the controls are hideous. See the left, right, B, and A buttons on the corners of the screen in that trailer? Using your touch screen, use those to... look, I know you can't exactly have an actual controller on a smartphone game, but this just does not work. At all. Not even in the best of times (I kind of gave up on Anodyne and the mobile version of Another World years ago before starting this write-up project, for much the same reason,) but especially not during a hectic boss battle when the A "button" is right next to my phone's actual built-in "pause and switch between apps" button.
  • 2) Even if the controls themselves weren't an issue, your character is clunky and hard to steer, and a lot of enemies and projectiles feel literally undodgeable as a result. I'm not against brutally difficult 8-bit games, but I am against fake difficulty.
  • 3) All this for what basically feels like "MST3K was great, right? LOL?"

In conclusion: Nah.


kjorteo: Pixel-style portrait of Celine's face (Default)
Celine Kalante Love

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