Saturday, September 17, 2011

Megaman ZX Advent

Mega Man action at its best!

Mega Man ZX Advent is the sixth game in the Mega Man Zero series (It is the second on the Nintendo DS). Like most Mega Man games, it features a slew of new bosses to defeat and powers to copy, though I found the challenge to be minimal as the game is just another lesson in pattern memorization. 

THE STORY: The Mega Man Zero story as a whole is very good, and Mega Man ZX Advent holds its own in the series. The story in ZX Advent has you take the role of either Grey, a reploid who has no memory of who he is or who made him, or Ashe, a human hunter who's after her next big treasure. While their stories are different, you will be fighting the same enemy throughout the game with both characters.

As I said earlier, the story was good, with a few twists and turns, and compelling enough to make you want to go and defeat that next boss. Playing through the previous Nintendo DS Mega Man game, Mega Man ZX, would help a bit to understand what is going on, but it isn't necessary. The guardian biometals from ZX are back, though they are being controlled by different people, and ZX is back as well. In the end, they are all tricked into fighting each other in order for one twisted individual to find the perfect Mega Man.

THE GRAPHICS: The graphics are nicely done, everything is very crisp and clear which makes the game fun to play through. The amount of detail in the game is very impressive, as is the amount of special attacks you can perform and how good they all look. The second screen on the DS is used for a variety of features, from showing you which area you are currently in (and where you need to head to), to acting as certain form's special abilities (for example, some forms use this screen to show you where items are hiding or to display an enemies information, to name a few). Only certain forms use the second screen, though, and it's used exactly as it was in Mega Man ZX. It would have been nice to have seen a few new uses of the second screen, with all the new forms available.

The cut scenes look spectacular, as I've come to expect from the new Mega Man games. It must've taken awhile to make them look that good, and they add an extra bit of flair to the game. You'll enjoy the graphics of Mega Man ZX Advent, they definitely don't detract anything from the game.

THE GAMEPLAY: As expected from its predecessor's, the game play in Mega Man ZX Advent is awesome. Of course, it is very similar to Mega Man ZX and all of the previous Mega Man Zero titles, so if you enjoyed those, you will love this. In short, you control your character in a 2D environment as you travel to different locations to hunt down different bosses to propel the storyline forward. In a twist from previous Mega Man games, as you defeat different bosses you will not only inherit their skills, but you can actually transform into them as well. This has its good and bad sides, though, as some bosses are only suited for certain environments. For example, there is a water boss that can only move in water, so if you transform into him on land, you won't be able to move at all.

Moving around the world is easier this time around as well, as you can warp to almost any section of the map instantly from your headquarters. You'll have to activate these warp points by spending E crystals which you can randomly obtain from defeating enemies. You can also collect disk data on different bosses and enemies, as well as hunt down those ever elusive sub-tanks and life-ups.

As you can imagine, with 15+ different bosses to transform into, there is a variety of ways to play through the game. One of my only complaints was that whenever you need to talk to somebody in the game, or activate a warp point, you have to change back into your default form. You'll find that it gets very annoying very fast. Nevertheless, the game play is addicting and a lot of fun for all ages.

THE SOUND: The music is satisfactory. Nothing outstanding, but it does its job in filling in what little moments you will hear of it between the game's sound effects. One thing I didn't like was having Grey constantly shouting whenever he let loose a charged shot in his default form, and you'll be hearing a lot of that. Your best bet is to find a form that you like using that doesn't sound annoying. The rest of the sound effects sound like you would expect them too, and it's always satisfying to hear a reploid being chopped to bits by your weapons.

The character's voice's are… interesting. Most of them are definitely unique, that's for sure. Grey sounds a tad too whiny for my taste, while the bosses range from sounding extremely hyper to speaking very slowly, with everything in between.

RE-PLAYABLE: Not only does Mega Man ZX Advent feature 2 different characters to play as, but it also features a couple of different difficulties (easy, normal, expert and maniac, I believe). You can also re-fight the bosses you've defeated and earn special medals by defeating them under certain conditions. For those of you with friends, there are a couple of multi-player mini-games you can play (I never got a chance to try these, sorry), as well as some mini-games you can play by yourself. All in all, Mega Man ZX Advent has enough to keep you busy for awhile if you try to complete everything there is to do in the game.

OVERALL: I enjoyed Mega Man ZX Advent, as I'm sure any Mega Man fan would. I would recommend trying to pick it up used if you can, as it will probably be a bit cheaper. Or you could pick up Mega Man ZX used and play it before picking up Mega Man ZX Advent, as it would be significantly cheaper and give you some back story as well as let you gauge if you like the Mega Man Zero series or not (for any newcomers). Either way, fans of plat-forming based action games will be pleased by Mega Man ZX Advent. Have fun and keep playing!

SYSTEM: Nintendo DS



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