Mega Man 64 Hands-On

The Blue Bomber hits the Nintendo 64 for 3D gameplay along the lines of Megaman Legends, but it looks like the game is doomed to fail.

Megaman 64 was perhaps the most overlooked game at Capcom's booth this year at E3, and for good reason: With titles like Marvel vs. Capcom 2, Onimusha, and Power Stone 2, an old style of gameplay based on an old franchise on a soon-to-be old system doesn't seem to have much of a chance. Though the charismatic robot has one of the longest running series in gaming history, gracing systems from the NES to the SNES to the PS to the N64 (and even the PC), Megaman 64 seems tired. The graphics are dull, the animations are uninspired, and the gameplay would have been enjoyable had the game come out several years ago. Megaman runs around a large 3D world, shooting, jumping, exploring, and gaining powers and the like, but the whole package appears fatigued. The wide-open green spaces are, well, boring. Even the corridors have been done to death. The obstacles have no details to them - they just seem to be things to avoid with no real thought as to how they fit into Megaman's universe. The images of the enemies are also suitably fatigued, with the "cute 3D robot" appearing more decadent than enticing. Finally, Megaman 64 lacks a target lock-on, so you have to run back and forth, shooting blindly. But don't get me wrong. It's not like I have something against 3D games, the Nintendo 64, or Megaman. I love all of them, and the potential for a great title is high (Capcom's new side scroller, Megaman X5, looks great). Even though it's still early in development, Megaman 64 seems to be trying to breathe life where there isn't a body worth reviving. It's just that, to be perfectly honest, this game looks old, tired, and defunct. I'm not the only one who feels this way, as scores of E3 goers took one look at the screen and moved on without a second thought.

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