By: Jeremy Davis, contributing writer
The short answer is that it is a ray of hope for fans of the beloved Mega Man franchise. This is a new game being developed by the man who started it all: Keniji Inafune. You really can’t talk about the excitement building around this game without some historical context. So, here it is:
Mega Man was originally created by a Japanese game designer named Keniji Inafune. He has been at the helm of the Mega Man series through multiple iterations including Mega Man Classic, Mega Man X, Mega Man Zero, Mega Man Battle Network, Mega Man Legends, and Mega Man Star Force.
Sadly in October of 2010, Inafune left Capcom. The Mega Man series has taken a dive since then, seeing several games cancelled with no real news, any new innovations, or expected major releases. A small release, Mega Man Xover, did make its way to the iOS phone platform in 2012, but it barely appeased fans who have been surviving mostly on fan-made games and nostalgic re-releases of the original titles. There was certainly a lot of excitement when Capcom and Nintendo announced that Mega Man would be a playable character in the upcoming Smash Brothers titles for Wii U and Nintendo 3Ds, but fans haven’t had much in the way of a substantial game to sink their teeth into since the release of Mega Man 10 in 2010. Franchise fans have sunk into a rut thanks to years of silence regarding their beloved character.
With that history in mind, let’s discuss Mighty No. 9? On August 31, 2013, Inafune, under the company Comcept USA, LLC, began a Kickstarter campaign for a new game he would like to develop for the PC and other platforms, targeted to launch in April of 2015. Its premise is strikingly similar to a Mega Man game, with a core plot about eight robots going haywire and a ninth robot going out to defeat them. This ninth robot is Beck, and fans are looking at him like he is the second coming of the beloved hero.
The Kickstarter project started with a goal of $900,000, but easily surpassed it in the first 24 hours. This is a testament to how excited fans are, but this isn’t just about a new game. The reason fans are so excited is because this new game is the answer to their demands. After almost 4 years of asking Capcom for a new release, something that would cater to the Mega Man genre, this is finally the answer. It will be curious to see what, if anything, Capcom does in response.
Even if this isn’t technically a Mega Man game, it sports many of the core concepts created by the Mega Man platform. Beck will acquire new weapons as he progresses through the game. Interestingly, it looks like not only will he be able to acquire weapons or upgrades from bosses but other enemies as well. This makes me wonder if power ups will be more in line with what we would see in an old Kirby’s Adventure game. In any event, the game is in the earliest forms of development and much could change between now and its release, but what is certain is this is something any old school Mega Man fan should be excited for. If it’s anything like what it looks like it will be, this game should be great for anyone and everyone looking for a modernized yet retro feeling game. To find out more check out the Mighty no. 9 Kickstarter page.