|System: DS||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Capcom||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Capcom||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Aug. 7, 2007||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1 (Online Trading)||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
by Amanda L. Kondolojy
April 23, 2007 - It almost seems that Mega Man has become somewhat of an annual constant in the gaming world. No matter what's going on in the world, it seems that there's always at least one Mega Man game coming out sometime soon.
Well, 2007 will be no different, and in addition to Mega Man ZX, which is coming out in September, the Mega Man franchise will also play host to three versions (Dragon, Leo, and Pegasus) of the all-new Mega Man Star Force for the Nintendo DS. Each version of the game features several distinctive battle abilities using different elements (Wood, Fire, and Ice respectively) and a couple unique missions specific to each version of the game.
The premise for each of the three versions is the same however. You'll play as Geo, an adolescent whose astronaut father has been missing for quite some time. In his quest to find his father and to learn more about the stars that his father cared so much about, Geo discovers a pair of "visualizer" glasses that enable the wearer to see all the electronic activity that exists between spaces. Through the use of these glasses Geo is able to contact Warlock from the planet FM, who serves as the conduit for young Geo to travel to Wave World and morph into Mega Man.
If the story sounds a little questionable to you, then I'm not alone. Here's hoping that the folks at Capcom give their storyline the proverbial once-over before release. I guess it doesn't make for an easy story mode when Mega Man's original character is out of the picture.
The good thing is the gameplay looks to be really promising this time around and includes a brand-new battle system. You'll be utilizing your d-pad and face buttons to explore the world, and meet important people in true RPG fashion. However, when you enter battle mode (which can occur randomly or be triggered deliberately) you'll be presented with a 5 tier grid, of which you will occupy one-fifth (the fifth closest to you) and your opponent will occupy the fifth farthest away from you. Of course there will be a fairly large empty space between you, and this is where you'll do most of your battle.
In addition to the new battle system, there's also a pretty innovative team system for online play. It's called the Brother Band system, and it's pretty cool if you've got friends because it allows you to share different unlocked abilities with your team members during online play. Not only is the team aspect pretty nifty by itself, but it also is very convenient if you want to borrow abilities from friends with different versions of the game. There's also a way to unlock the special missions that are unique to each game using the Brother Band System.
The graphics are good, and recall the look of some of the original Mega Man games, without adopting a style that is too archaic. The character's regular environment is 3-D along with the battle environment, but the characters move in a 2-D side scrolling manner. The characters themselves are more like sprites, but they provide a good fit for the subject material considering its history.
The new trio of Mega Man games, although they may bit a bit muddling in the storyline area, do seem like they will include enough interesting characters to make these three titles more interesting then some of the other Mega Man games that have come out recently. Here's hoping!
Amanda L. Kondolojy
CCC Freelance Writer