Tuesday, December 6, 2011
Happy 20th Anniversay, Rockman 4!
Fans are split on where they stand with Mega Man 4. Some love it to pieces, others despise it. The love/hate relationship is rooted in MM4's gameplay; an attempt to push the franchise's gameplay into new territory. This ambition, alone, would go on to create a rift in the fanbase. You came out of Mega Man 4 either embracing the changes, or left with a bad taste in your mouth.
The presence of the Charge Shot in particular seems to be the instigator -- to some, it's an excellent addition to the tried-and-true gameplay. To others, it was a game breaker; an anomaly that disrupted a formula that wasn't broken to begin with. And then there's the wide range of diverse opinions about level design, Robot Masters, weapons and plot. It goes on and on, really.
Again, you either love it or hate it. Truly, I fall into the former. To me, MM4 pushed the boundaries -- tried some new things and, for the most part, succeeded.
At its core, Mega Man 4 offers enough variation from its predecessors to be unique. Familiar challenges boasted some new twists, the story (initially) threw us for a loop, menu screens were streamlined and slick, and two sets of solid castle stages helped make MM 4 into one of the longer adventures. Oh, and the music. Yummy stuff. Most of the tunes are diverse and fairly catchy. To this day, I often find myself finger or foot tapping to the beats.
While not my all-time favorite Mega Man game, Mega Man 4 does rank highly on my list. By no means is it perfect -- some aspects could have used some extra polish, but as a whole, Mega Man 4 stands proud as the underdog. And hey, I think we can all appreciate MM4 for introducing us to Eddie -- that lovable walking suitcase.
So take some time today to reflect on Mega Man 4. Of course, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments!