MegaMan Legends

Platform: Playstation 1 (Also on PC and Nintendo 64 as MegaMan 64)

Release Date: September 15, 1998

ESRB: Everyone (Animated Violence)

Publisher: Capcom

Developer: Capcom Production Studio 2

Genre: Third Person Shooter/Action-RPG

 

A SURVIVOR OF THE PSONE ERA

Games produced during the days of the Playstation and the Nintendo 64 are not exactly known to hold up well. Now that graphics have improved and standards have been set for gaming in 3D space, it's kinda easy to see why. Back then, it was a mad rush to see what kind of control scheme worked and what was acceptable from a gameplay point of view, since few developers knew what to do with the fully rendered environments that these consoles were able to produce. Of course, the level of success for many of these games varied greatly even in their original release. However, as things calmed down, and even newer consoles released, it became easy to look back and see that a lot of what was even considered the best of the best at the time, sucked. The controls were too stiff, the graphics looked horrible...it soon became a badge of honor for a game from that time to still be considered “playable” and held in high regard even in the gaming environment we know today. Unsurprisingly, few games achieve this status. Thankfully though, MegaMan Legends is one of them.

The game stars MegaMan Volnutt, his good friend, Roll, and her grandfather, Gramps. They land on Kattelox Island when their airship, the Flutter, starts to malfunction. They're just in time too, because pirates, known as the Bonnes, are about to attack the island! That's essentially the story right there: MegaMan must simultaneously help repair his ship by digging for parts in the underground ruins of the island, and protect the citizens from attacks. Other than introducing the Bonnes, there's nothing too special about the story, but it's clear that that wasn't this game's number one priority. That would be the gameplay.

While the controls still might seem odd to someone who has grown used to the standards modern games have for dual analog controls (which the game lacks support for), they are still fairly easy to learn and intuitive enough to still work great. Regular movement is controlled by the d-pad and, while a tiny bit stiff, it's nowhere near the amount tank controls are. Strafing is handled by the L1 and R1 buttons. There is an option to switch the controls, but I've found this set up to be the best of the options offered. Other gameplay staples, such as jumping, shooting, and using special attacks, are used by the X, Square, and Triangle buttons respectively. The great thing is that it's a simple set up, and it doesn't get in the way of the player. That's probably the biggest reason why it's held up so well.

Which works to the game's advantage, because exploring the underground ruins in this game takes up a significant portion of the time you'll be spending with it. What's cool though, is that at first, you're just sent down into the ruins on isolated missions. But, as the game progresses, you start to see more and more, until you realize that they're all connected areas! It's a nice feature, since the entire area is about as big as the overworld is, which means you have more than one path of travel to get to your intended destination. Plus, the amount of hidden goodies in there are sure to keep you busy for a few hours, if dungeon crawling is your thing.

The graphics are surprisingly crisp, eh?