Capcom has decided it is finally time to collect the popular Gameboy series in Mega Man Battle Network Legacy Collection.
In 2001 Capcom decided to create a different kind of MegaMan game for the Gameboy Advance. Set in the near-future where incredibly advanced technology has become the norm. Capcom added in an all new protagonist, and new battle system that combined card battle with an action game. The Battle Network idea was so successful that it became series, complete with a cartoon and comic books.
This long asked for collection is finally here.
In the year 20XX, technology has taken over, especially the internet and a new Network Society has formed. People carry around PET’s, which are mobile devices equipped with sentient programs call NetNavis. The main character, Lan Hikari, and his personal NetNavi, Mega Man EXE must work together to battle rising cybercrime on the internet.
This game will collect the following 10 mainline games: Mega Man Battle Network, Mega Man Battle Network 2, Mega Man Battle Network 3 Blue and White, Mega Man Battle Network 4 Red Sun and Blue Moon, Mega Man Battle Network 5 Team Protoman and Team Colonel, Mega Man Battle Network 6 Cybeast Gregar and Cybeast Falzar.
Gameboy advances to Switch, PlayStation and PC.
Mega Man Battle Network started life on the Gameboy Advance. The Legacy collection is not a remake, only a remaster. The Legacy Collection presents these games in a large screen format. The collection fills the sides of the screen with black bars or Mega Man themed banners.
Since these are GBA games, don’t expect the graphics to be state of the art. Luckily Capcom opted to let you choose whether or not you want to use a graphics filter. Capcom is using the same high-resolution filter that they used in the Mega Man X Legacy collection.
Other recent releases such as Tactics Ogre: Rebirth, chose to force you to use a filter that makes things appear pastel. I was not a big fan of that filter and I am pleased that Capcom gives you the choice here.
Capcom has also decided to throw in a 3D rendered model of Mega Man EXE to guide you through the menus. Also, they have included a music player so that you can enjoy all of the songs outside of playing the game. Also an included, an Art Gallery where you can enjoy art of all of the main characters from the game.
If you pre-order the game you will receive two special skins for the Mega Man EXE model. In addition, you will receive four arranged music tracks that are available in the music player.
The Web game is internet enabled.
The original GBA games allowed players to connect two units through the link cable. Legacy Collection will simulate this experience by allowing players to log into the internet and battle across the net. The Switch version is going to be compatible with Local Communications. How meta all of this is given the nature of the series.
Also, you will be able to Battle trade chips over the internet. These chips can be used to enhance your character by equipping different chips to power up your weapons.
The Buster Cannon makes its appearance.
Gameplay wise, the games are a mix of Mega Man characters and turn based stategy. You explore the outside world as Lan Hikari and the net world as MegaMan EXE. The dichotomy of open world, and turn based strategy was a bold direction when the series was created. You roam around speaking to NPC’s and exploring the overworld. Battles are only triggered when you log into the net.
Battles consist of moving along a hexed based grid taking turns attacking virus characters. Most of the characters are direct callbacks to characters from the mainline, X, and Legends series of games. This is a distinct turn from the action based platforming that most of the most of the MegaMan games are known for.
The battlefield is comprised of 18 tiles divided into two groups of nine. One group for MegaMan EXE to move along and the opposing for the enemy viruses to move along. MegaMan EXE attacks the opposing side by attacking with his arm buster cannon that the series is known for. Also, you may utilize Battle Chips. Battle Chips are placed in a folder before the battle begins and are drawn at random during the battle.
Battle Chips are forms of attacks that can be combined which results in a Program Advance, which results in a stronger attack or an attack that can be used continually for an amount of time. The Battle Chips are assigned an element such as fire, ice, etc. When you attack the enemy using an element that they are weak to, additional damage is dealt. Later iterations of the series allow players to trade Battle Chips, resulting in Secret Chips.
After a long wait, soon players will be able to battle the network.
Gamers have long asked for these much love Gameboy Advance games to be collected for another platform. Though the asking price may be a little steep for some, others will gladly pay full price for these games as they have waited a long time. For years the Blue Bomber was neglected by Capcom, especially these games, but it seems they are finally taking steps to remedy that.
Mega Man Battle Network Legacy Collection will be available on Switch, PlayStation 4 and PC, April 14, 2023.