Review: Mega Man 2 (NES)

By Drew Wilson

A really well known game series is the Mega Man series. In this review, we take a look at the second iteration which arguably is one of the games that really made this series popular in the first place and look at if this is worth a play through today.

This first sequel of the Mega Man series was released in 1989. After this release, there’s been countless new iterations of this game. By the time this game was one year old, Mega Man became an incredibly popular series.

The game centres around Mega Man. Your mission is to stop Dr. Wiley and his master robots from… well, not sure, but you have to stop him nevertheless. You initially get a choice of whether you want to play the game on Normal mode or difficult mode.

After this, you get to a menu which really made this game stand out from the rest. Rather than progressing through the game in a linear style, you get to choose which of the 8 robot master you want to take on. After you make the selection (I recommend either Flash Man or Metal Man to begin with), you start with the beginning part of a stage you must complete before making it to the robot masters layer.

If you are successful in defeating the robot master, you get their power that you can select from the pause menu in the next stage. If you beat one of three particular stages, you’ll also earn one of three “tool” weapons that you can use to retrieve particular items or reach certain parts of the game that are otherwise impassable.

Once you beat all the robot masters, you get to storm Dr. Wiley’s castle where the game becomes linear again. The difference is that, between stages, you don’t get all your weapons recharged. Whatever you have left get’s carried through to the next stage all the way to the end. So, chances are, you’ll want to find a particularly easy enemy in various arts of the game to kill over and over again by moving it’s spawning location on and off the screen.

A small tip is that it is possible to beat the level with the flashing blobs on the walls without dying – but it’s somewhat difficult without running out of crash bombs. Use tool 1 and try and blow up two breakable walls with a single Crash shot. That’s your hint. If you can’t, then dye and recharge just outside the room. All destroyable walls that you’v already destroyed will already be gone.

For a game that was released before 1990, the graphics are actually really well done. You get that feeling of free movement rather than the robotic movements you get from other games (ironic given that your character is a robot after all). Play games like Contra to get what I mean. The backgrounds and the robots are well crafted, but if you have too many of them, things start getting glitchy.

The music was very well done. You actually can forget your are playing a really old NES game at times partly because the music is so well sequenced. The sound effects are also quite well done. The only glitch I’ve heard was when I was running through the Heat Man stage, I suddenly heard the death sequence for no reason an the music stopped. I have, to this day, been unable to replicate that.

Overall, this is a great game to play even today. It can challenge you at times, but otherwise, it’s a very enjoyable game to go back to and play again.

Overall

Furthest point in game: Beat the game on Normal numerous times.

General gameplay: 20/25
Replay value: 10/10
Graphics: 10/10
Audio: 5/5

Overall score: 90%

Drew Wilson on Twitter: @icecube85