Megaman Zero, Times Four…. and then some

Did you miss out on snagging the Megaman Zero games? Maybe sold off your GBA to take advantage of current, oft-updated, and more powerful hand held machines?

If so, make sure you pass Capcom a thumbs up for stuffing 4 of the best games from the GBA into one DS cart. For about $30 and a trip to Walmart (which usually involves a bonus stop at McRonnies), you can snag yourself a hefty cart, chock full of quick dashing, wall scaling, laser sword swinging, Megaman Zero action.

Veteran players can select any MMZ title upon first play, while those new to the series have the option to play through “easy mode”, which has players run through each title in order, with all upgrades achieved and infinite continues. The trade off of course here is the removal of the difficulty and item finding, that ironically, are signature features setting the Megaman Zero series apart from other games under the panoramic scope of the Blue Bomber’s library.

Other perks include artwork displayed on the bottom screen, usually coinciding with what level, character or boss is currently taking center stage in-game. Character and mod cards are also unlocked while running through each title, leaving players with something extra to peruse while not enjoying the main game. Most of the art featured in the game was also included in the now expensive, and equally rare, official Capcom artbook – a fantastic alternative to shelling out cash better spent on other games.

I’ve spent quite a bit of time with the game over the last week, never once feeling a wave of tedium, and eventually gaining a new respect for the series in general. It looks fantastic on a back-lit DS screen, especially (and you’ve heard me say this before) when paired with the XL’s bigger screen. Making a transfer to a “snes” style button layout, the controls still manage to feel natural and very simple to use. Those who find the control change somewhat cumbersome will be happy to know that the buttons are fully customizable in the options menu.

There’s little room for excuses when considering whether to pick this collection up or not. While catering to new fans or those with a passing interest, Capcom has managed to encapsulate some of its best GBA work into one cart; Much to the benefit of long time Megaman fans. The only feature this collection is missing is a jukebox or some form of unlockable music. The lightning pace and tone that Megaman Zero has is due in no small part to its soundtrack, which I personally believe features some of the best work a Megaman game has to offer. The soundtracks, including the later arrange albums, are kind of a pain to get a hold of. It would have been really nice to be able to play through each game with the arrange tracks, or at the very least, had the ability to park your DS within close proximity to enjoy some of the rockin’ tunes these games offer.

Nitpicking aside, this is a very nice package that should appeal to almost all DS owners. The hours and hours of fine tuned 2d gameplay more than makes up the cheap asking price that the collection is being retailed for. Spending the cash on each game separately with the expensive art book could easily work out to a full months rent. You really owe it to yourself, as a Megaman fan or DS enthusiast, to pick this collection up ASAP. Who knows, if sales are good enough, we may end up seeing that illusive and highly sought after Gameboy Megaman Collection.

Image by ~CATLQE

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