For gamers with an itch for hardcore 2D action, the blue bomber scratches like none other.
The game's sprites were among the most beautiful of its time, large characters against colorful, expressive backgrounds that convey the feeling of the war-ravaged world in which the Megaman X series takes place. There's no noticable slowdown, and there aren't any compromises made in the smoothness of animation.
The gameplay is as is to be expected from Megaman X. At the beginning, players select whether they want to play as X or his saber-wielding partner Zero. The two have slightly different gameplay styles which will affect gameplay. X acts the way he always has, collecting the powers of fallen bosses to add to his blasting arsenal. Meanwhile, Zero learns special moves to accentuate his fighting. Playing as Zero is perhaps the most rewarding, as his play style emphasizes close combat and strategy over standing back and blasting the heck out of anything in sight. Of course, gamers can look forward to crazy jumps and cheap, difficult bosses, as is the Megaman tradition.
The sound effects do what they do, but aren't all that remarkable. They're mostly slightly enhanced versions of the same explosions we've been hearing since the original Megaman X. The music in this game is what shines. Cheesy 80s-style rock and dance beats drive the action onscreen, giving the game a charm not seen in many games of its time or since. Of course, the sound score takes a hit from the horrific dubbing this game possesses. As was common for the time, games were dubbed by half-dead people off the street, with the voices of X and the General being the worst offenders.
Despite the horrific voice acting though, the game is still one of the better efforts in the series. If you're into 2D platforming at all, you owe it to yourself to play Megaman X4