Recently released for download on the Wii’s virtual console and for PS3 (360 owners will have to wait until the end of the month), MegaMan 10 is a veritable blast from the past. Like something ripped straight from an old NES cartridge, this sidescrolling platformer stays true to its classic roots.
MegaMan 10 looks and works very much the same as the originals (after the first) did. The story is negligible, something about Roboenza, but is otherwise the same.
You are still the Blue Bomber with your trusty arm gun ready to fight your way to the eight robot masters and give them what for, after which you viciously rip off and cannibalize their weaponry for your own use.
Traversing the levels in 10 is, by far, the most difficult part. The difficulty curve, like many MegaMan games, is incredibly varied. Some levels are incredibly easy to travers while a select few (notably Strike Man’s) will leavy you screaming at the TV for hours on end. Unlike its predecessor from 2009, MegaMan 9, the game is doable and offers some chance of seeing the end credits.
Also of note is the reintroduction of Protoman, MegaMan’s longtime counterpart, as a playable character something unheard of in the previous installation. Playing as the mysterious android leaves something to be desired though. Protoman is exactly like Mega Man, except that he is red, wears a scarf, and brandishes a shield in addition to his arm cannon. The shield allows Protoman to block projectiles while jumping but at the cost of a slightly slower fire rate and a high pitched whilstling that you get to hear every time you die, which will happen.
Since the advent of full 3d game environments, the classic 2-d sidescrolling platformers fell to the wayside, with development studios preferring to make their games with a more realistic tone. After that the almost primitive 2-d games were tossed aside for their more valued upgrades. Recently, though, downloadable gaming has enabled 2-d games to flourish amongst the 3-d behemoths. Games like MegaMan 9 and 10, the nostalgic return to the Final Fantasy universe FFIV: The After years, and the incredibly artistic Braid, each of which are only available via online download, have tapped the growing generations of gamers childhood memories and continued to make something worth buying that anyone can enjoy. Hopefully, this reestablishment of 2-d gaming will continue on for many years to come.