Release Date: December 17th, 2012
Genre: Action Platformer
A good while ago, Seow Zong Hui, a developer who was a big fan of both of the Mega Man and Street Fighter series, decided to create a platformer which combined both of these franchises. Later on, Capcom caught wind of the fan’s development efforts and decided to pitch in and help finish the game. On December 17th 2012, the Street Fighter X Mega Man released to Capcom Unity website to many of the fans’ pleasure, just in time to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of Street Fighter and Mega Man.
Just to give an idea on what Street Fighter X Mega Man is about, just imagine a Mega Man game in the NES era, but swap out robot masters for the familiar faces from Street Fighter games. As Mega Man, you have an objective to best the Street Fighters and ultimately, defeat M. Bison. This idea alone is enough to get fans interested in the game. But concept aside, how does the game hold up?
The art and controls are certainly on par with the art and controls that were established in the NES Mega Man games. You have your regular Mega Man mechanics which consist of running, jumping, sliding, shooting, and charging your Mega Buster for a charged shot. In this game, you’d also have you the control to switch special weapons with a couple of buttons, which made playing the game a little easier. As for the art, the sprites and the environment art shares the same style as the NES Mega Man games have. The art palette choices for each stage complements the Street Fighter stages perfectly too. The art and the controls helped give the players the look and feel of a great blue bomber game, which is one of the things that we ask for in a Mega Man game.
As I mentioned before, the boss roster of this game consist of fighters that you knew from the Street Fighter series. The bosses featured in this game range from the most infamous Ryu and Chun-Li to the more obscure fighters such as Urien and Rose. Like in Mega Man games, each Street Fighter has their own signature power that you can obtain from defeating a Street Fighter. During the fight though, each fighter has a special bar that fills in every time they take a hit. Once the bar fills up, it is imminent that they use a powerful special attack that greatly damages the player, so it adds more pressure to survive the fight. At least the added depth in boss boss battles make the fights more worthy and the victories sweeter, especially when you manage to obtain Ryu’s Hadoken. Just like the robot masters in the other Mega Man games, each Street Fighter has their own weakness to special weapons that are obtained from other fighters, so at least they carry the same weakness system as previous Mega Man games.
Each stage in this game represents the fighters’ signature stages in the game, such as Ryu’s Suzaku Castle which was implemented as a Mega Man level. The art palette choices fit their stages rather well. The enemy placement makes this game a little on the challenging side on a few instances. What’s nice about the levels in the game is that they add some variety that goes beyond running, jumping and climbing up/down on ladders. In C Viper’s stage, for example, there was a part in the level where you have to get to the end of the level section before getting hit by a death trap. While these levels fit the fighters perfectly well, it certainly feels like it the levels themselves are fit for a Mega Man game, with one exception that I’ll get to later.
The game’s strongest point is the music, especially the music that was made for the stages. The World Warrior and Select a Player themes were re-composed with the chip tune style and used for the Title Screen and Stage Select screens, respectively. As for the fighter’s stages themes, the themes that were best associated with the Street Fighters used in Street Fighter titles were also given the chip tune treatment. The music (done by A_Rival) tracks used in the game certainly matches the style that was used in Mega Man games. The music composition in the game is a perfect marriage of the Street Fighter themes that we grew up to love and the chip tune style was most familiar in Mega Man games. This marriage alone is definitely the candy for the ears that helps players retain their interest in the game.
Street Fighter X Mega Man is anything but flawless, as it is only one flaw away from making this crossover yet another timeless Mega Man classic. Despite the fact that the levels fit the fighters as well as fit the style of Mega Man games very well, the levels themselves lack the challenge that helped make the NES Mega Man games great. Sure, there were some parts of the SF X MM that tested me, even put me somewhat close to rage quitting once or twice. However, the more testing parts of the SF X MM only accounted for less than 10% of the game, with the rest of the game somewhat easy without the right amount of enemies to keep you on your toes. The difficulty in the game puts Street Fighter X Mega Man one of the easiest Mega Man games that I have played thus far.
Yet despite the lack of challenge in Mega Man games, Street Fighter X Mega Man is certainly a worthy crossover game to add on to your PC game library. Hui did us a solid service by making a game that successfully combines both Street Fighter and Mega Man into a game that can be called a hidden gem. If you manage to get Capcom to help you finish the game without reaching out to them first, then you must have at least done this game it’s due justice. If you’re interested in picking this game up, you can download the game for free from the Capcom Unity website here.