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Mega Man 11 Hands On Preview

The Blue Bomber is back!

It’s exciting to finally be playing a new mainline Mega Man game, especially after the whole debacle with Mighty No. 9. While I actually enjoyed what MN9 had to offer and thought it was a capable Mega Man clone, nothing is quite like the real thing. When Capcom surprise sprung on us last week that the demo was available on the eShop (as well as the PlayStation and Xbox store fronts) I couldn’t dive in quickly enough. Featuring just one robot master, Block Man, we were given a small glimpse into what the game will have to offer and I walked away impressed and even more excited for the full release.

You might’ve already heard about the new double gear system, which is absolutely the biggest change to the classic formula featured here. It’s not some radical departure, but something new in your repertoire you need to be mindful of while tackling the demo level and boss (and I’m sure the other levels and bosses as well). You’re now able to move super fast effectively making everything else move in slow motion or you can activate super strength to shoot more powerful blasts from your arm cannon. You can activate both simultaneously, which will forcibly drain the full power bar dedicated to this new system.

During my time in Block Man’s stage, I saw much greater use for super speed than super power, with various blocks falling extra quickly or enemy attacks that moved too quickly to react to in time. It’s clear this is done intentionally so that you activate your new powers. It definitely took some adjustment to remember these new powers were there and my first run was a bit of a struggle because of it. After expending all my lives and trying again, I started leaning into these new abilities a bit more and saw much more success on subsequent tries.

As usual, the game is a challenge and memorizing the levels is your greatest ally in the quest to defeat Wily. Just like the old games, control feels tight and once you acclimate yourself to the physics and level composition it’s much easier work to make your way through the level.

The Block Man boss battle is equally interesting in terms of shaking up the formula. He’s a three phase fight, with the first and last leg being quite similar to classic Mega Man. However, in the second phase, he morphs into a full screen enemy and you need to dodge his attacks, which is made much easier using the super speed gear. It was an interesting change to the typical boss flow and I enjoyed the new nuance to the battle.

Graphically, it’s worth mentioning how nice Mega Man 11 is looking. While Mega Man 9 and 10 opted to keep to the NES Mega Man style, 11 is a totally fresh look featuring super clean 3D graphics. It has a painted over look to it that’s easy on the eyes and feels to bring the classic Mega Man enemies respectively up-to-date with modern design. The music is also on point here, as always for Mega Man.

If you’re a fan of classic Mega Man, you’ll be happy to know that 11 is seemingly on track to turn out particularly great if the Block Man stage is any indication. I’ve got my copy on pre-order and I’m greatly looking forward to finally playing the full experience. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend grabbing the demo and giving it a go for yourself, you’ll surely enjoy what it has to offer.


 

Comments

Matt Snee Staff Writer

09/16/2018 at 02:50 AM

Can't handle Megaman games, but the graphics here look really cool. 

Blake Turner Staff Writer

09/20/2018 at 01:59 AM

I was surprised at just how challenging the demo was. I know Mega man is a challenging series but I suspected they'd maybe tone down difficulty a bit. I was wrong. This demo kicked my ass. 

Super Step Contributing Writer

09/22/2018 at 10:46 PM

I've actually been getting through the level fine without any gears, but there was a falling block near what I think is the end of the level where I'm ashamed to admit I couldn't figure out how to exit the thing before getting sawed to death. 

Initially I thought, "what, does Mega Man have a morph ball mode I'm unaware of?" but it turns out (after watching a YouTube video of it) it's just that you have to jump and do a slide to fir through that hole. 

Ya ever spend way too long trying to figure something out in a video game, only to see someone else take a second and treat it like it's not even meant to be a challenge? I guess in my defense, the person playing it said they'd played the demo a bunch, but still. Not proud of myself. 

And before this happened I was told you could press down to make the long jumps in F-Zero. FML 

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