By Josh Speer / June 13th, 2018
I would have thought that on the same day Ridley was revealed for Smash Bros., nothing else could have made me happier. But thankfully I was wrong in that regard. The same day, as I was shown about the convention center by my colleague Benny Carillo, we found the Capcom booth. And despite me having some issues with them over the years, I still fervently recall my passion for a certain blue bomber. So when I saw the line to get in to play Mega Man 11 wasn’t that long, I took a chance. And that chance paid off beautifully.
One of the first things I need to mention about Mega Man 11 is how it visually seems to be an homage to games such as Mega Man 7 and 8. While those titles have their critics, visually they were very attractive, with a candy-colored liveliness that had previously been absent from the simpler NES Mega Man games. But don’t be fooled by the sugar coating, as Mega Man 11 is classically difficult, even on the Normal setting. (There was also a easy and super hard choice, but I went middle of the road.) Frankly, this game shares more DNA with Mega Man 9 and 10 than 7 or 8.
I consider myself a true Mega Man fan, meaning I know to expect a challenge, but even then this one made me earn every victory. While I did fine with most of the platforming challenges, such as racing against a conveyor belt as blocky obstructions fell in front of me and a grinder sliced behind me, or jumping onto blocks and blasting invisible enemies as they revealed themselves, I was constantly kept on my toes. Initially I tried to play the demo classically, avoiding the new Double Gear mechanic, but the more I played, the more I realized the benefits of slowing down time or powering up my buster. There’s a lot to juggle in the demo stage for Block Man (though I do wish there had been another stage to pick from). Even the mini bosses were tough, as they only had one weak point and were composed of heavy spiked segments that tried to flatten you, and the second time around added a conveyor belt for extra frustration.
One of the coolest things about the demo was how tight the controls felt. I played the Switch version with the Pro Controller and all my deaths were due to my own inexperience. The game is an honest return to form, and I couldn’t be happier. It’s a nice mix of old and new Mega Man mechanics, and has some neat flourishes such as what appears to be a Wily version of Eddie who steals items and runs off with them. But the best of all was Block Man himself. I’m sure everyone has seen his battle in the trailer, but it’s much better to experience firsthand. At the beginning of the fight he’s pretty basic, hopping around aggressively and dropping blocks onto you from the ceiling, but once he goes into his gigantic form it’s a whole new challenge. I nearly managed to beat the blocky menace, but couldn’t quite do it with the allotted lives. That said, I had a marvelous time with Mega Man 11, and am now even more excited than I was for its release. Stay tuned for more coverage of Capcom’s best robot in the coming months, and be sure to check back for more E3 hands on coverage!
CapcomE3 2018HardcoreImpressionsMega Man 11octoberRetro