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We’ve been trumpeting Mega Man 9’s release ever since we first revealed it back in July. Now that it’s out for WiiWare and PSN (and on its way to XBLA), we’re finally able to share some of our favorite nuances the developers threw in to make the experience all the more rewarding.
None of these are major, but their impact elevates the game to Miyamoto levels of greatness; Miyamoto is known for getting all the “little things” perfect, and this is the first game we’ve played in a long time that paid such attention to innocuous nothings that most gamers will pass on by.
If you don’t want any spoiled for you, including a brief hint at the ending, stop reading now!
Early in Magma Man’s level you’ll approach a series of instant-death beams that fry Megs on contact. However, if you inch reeeeeeal close to ‘em, you’ll see flecks of metal blasting off. Neat!
Splash Woman’s squid enemy and Concrete Man himself both affect Mega Man’s physical appearance. One covers him in inky goo, the other in hardened concrete. The latter immobilizes Mega Man, but near as we could tell the ink doesn’t have any adverse effects.
You rarely get to see Mega Man without his matching helmet, but this time, with a simple fee of 20 bolts, you can play the whole game with his black locks flowing. You take more damage though, so be careful. Dying puts the helmet back on, by the way.
This is way later in the game (won’t say where, but you can find out in our MM9 guide, so a lot of gamers won’t even have to deal with this vertical shaft that slowly pushes Mega Man skyward. The only way to get through is to shoot your buster the opposite direction you want to float. Pictured here is a really tricky spot that nicked us the first couple of tries.
Yes, it would be hard to “miss” this if you play through; we’re including it for those who maybe never make it that far.
MM9 looks and plays just like MM2, the entry most consider to be the best in the series. But if visual cues weren’t enough, you also get a couple of songs taken straight from the NES classic, captured in the above video and pitted against each other.
See? Nothing big at all, but damn, if you’ve been playing these for as long as we have, the music sharing undoubtedly made you crack a smile.
Next page – Dr. Light, Nega-Man and a brief glimpse at the feel-good ending of the year.