For over 20 years, the Mega Man franchise has given challenge-hungry gamers something to chew on. Today in 2009, the original NES version of Mega Man, originally released in 1985, still stands out as a game that can provide tremendous challenge; the only problem is finding it on the NES is nearly impossible.
Rather than just re-release a 20-year-old game on a system with the power of the PSP, Capcom decided to not only give the game a new graphical engine, they also added two new levels and have the gamer the opportunity to play two different versions of the game; one playing more like the original version and the other that takes full advantage of the PSP. This not only livens up a game with an already addictive gameplay engine, it brings out the best in one of the most significant games of our generation and makes a new game, “Mega Man: Powered Up,” that is sure to keep the franchise above water for many years to come.
The first thing that’s sure to catch your attention when you initially start playing “Mega Man: Powered Up” is the presentation, as Mega Man seems to have been playing with puppies and reading romance novels, becoming perhaps as adorable as a Muppet Baby in the process.
Don’t let this new, cuter version of Mega Man fool you however; this game is much harder than the original, seeing that the A.I. has been beefed up considerably and the PSP’s screen being much wider than other handhelds, which allows for more enemies on the screen to simultaneously attack you.
While the game’s challenge is definitely its best selling point, the graphical engine does do a lot more than make you fall in love with Mega Man’s new cuter self. In-fact, it almost makes you feel that you are playing a hybrid version of a 2-D side-scroller, displaying perspective and angle changes you would normally see in a 3-D platformer. That in itself shows just how much graphical polish this game has.
Proving even more so that this game is more than just an updated remake is the level creation mode, giving gamers the opportunity to take a great game even further by challenging themselves even more than the standard game. Polished and intuitive, the level creation mode in MM:PU is the icing on the cake, giving even non-Mega Man fans a reason to try the game out for themselves.
Overall, “Mega Man: Powered Up” has it all, great graphics, addictive gameplay, sweet additional modes and a nostalgic feel that ties everything together in a perfectly tied bow that will have even the toughest of gamers looking to untie.
Patrick Hickey Jr.
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