We recently got our hands on the upcoming “spiritual successor” to Mega Man, Mighty No. 9, at Square Enix’s booth at Comic-Con, and it’s turning out to be quite the polished game.
Let’s get the elephant out of the room now. Yes, Mighty No. 9 pretty much is your father’s Mega Man. With Mega Man creator Keiji Inafune at the helm, we really don’t have to go over all the similarities, but what really makes the game fun is how fresh some of the concepts are.
Yes, you’re still a blue robot-looking dude with the ability to shoot the crap out of other robots, and yes it’s a 2D sidescroller with a lot of hazards to avoid, but since this is, in essence, a new IP, the game does sort of hold your hand a bit.
In typical first timer fashion, as simple as the controls are, the game deems it necessary to treat the first half of the first level like a tutorial. It teaches you how to move, how to jump, and how to do a dash technique to zip past small areas or use to expand your jumping range. This dash technique is also used on enemies when they’re weak, essentially taking on some of their powers temporarily, giving you a faster, stronger, and souped up Beck.
It’s all muscle memory as soon as you learn how to run around blasting and dashing through things, as it seems like the best approach in the first level was simply to run and gun as quickly as possible. The first “boss” was nothing too tricky and we were able to get through the first level without dying.
The next level we tried took place underwater for the most part, where Beck’s speed and maneuverability are greatly affected due to the water’s lack of gravity, and most of the level has you sinking while avoiding hazards, which is harder than it seems, even when using the dash technique.
Overall, Mighty No. 9 is playing quite well and we didn’t expect any less. Unfortunately, there are some online bugs that Infaune’s team would like to work on, so they’ve delayed the game into the first quarter of 2016.
Editor’s Note: The conclusion of this preview was updated to acknowledge the delay of this game to 2016.