Mega Man X: Command Mission Review

PlayStation 2

November 23, 2007 by

Mega Man X: Command Mission Image

A city in peril - an army of reploids have begun arming themselves under the banner of the evil Epsilon, the rebellion has begun - only one man can save us

Mega Man X: Command Mission, on paper, seems like a very good idea. Honestly, it does. The transition from the typical side-scrolling action to a turn-based RPG seems like a no-brainer. The amount of wealth that the Mega Man universe has to offer is staggering, and what was probably envisioned as a grand epic in scale, turned out to be the diet, caffeine free of all RPGs. Everything any RPG fan has come to expect is there: A cast of colorful characters to choose from, a story set to a seemingly epic backdrop, puzzle solving, voice acting, and of course, random time battles. Now the real question is this: Does Mega Man X: Command Mission do anything of the above-mentioned staples particularly well? Same answer as before: No.
MMXCM is fraught with mediocrity, which the game doesn’t even seem to try to hide very well. From the second you control Mega Man X and engage in the first battle, you know the ride is going to be, well, lame. Capcom has thought it wise to use the now overly clichéd anime cel-shaded graphics to represent the denizens of the Mega Man world - and believe me these clichéd animation models are the only thing worth looking at in the entire game. The level design of MMXCM consists of connecting bleak tunnels that spawn off into equally bleak rooms that lead to nowhere. Each level is almost identically the same, offering no variety with the exception of a palate change once in while. Compounding the uninspiring level design is the equally uninspired attempt to inject a puzzle element into the game. Such incredible puzzles include: jumping over the red square and my personal favorite, not moving when the screen is red. This insight leads us to my next thought - this game is just too easy. There is honestly no reason to go out of your way to level up during the course of the game. Sure there are one or two touchy spots where you sort of wish that you had, but for the most part you can wing it. Combat is broken down into a rock, paper, scissors; "my thunder is better than your water" style of combat. Typical RPG fanfare here. Even all the ridiculous status effects everyone has come to know and love are here, renamed for a digital age: example – poison = virus.

The story of MMXCM is really the only thing the game has going for it. Sure Sigma is nowhere to be found and Zero is a cocky bastard, but at least it’s Mega Man lore. The story is simple, as are most of the plots of Mega Man games, a precious metal by the name of Force Metal has been found, a metal that if refined can produce immense power. Of course this kind of power entices certain reploids to rise up, led by Epsilon, and take control of the mines and the surrounding city Giga. Mega Man, accompanied by Zero and friend, lead an expedition to investigate the Mavrick infestation with hopes of quelling the rebellion before the Reploid army launches a full tactical strike against the populous taken hostage. Yet things become complicated when a teammate betrays the group leaving X incapacitated and Zero left for dead. It is up to Mega Man and the reploids he meets along the way to engage Epsilon and his elite group of mavericks.

Aside from the already established characters such as Zero, Axle and X, the cast of MMXCM consists of horrible walking RPG clichés. There’s a hardened bounty hunter with a heart of gold, a sly thief who learns to care, and who could forget the mighty warrior who wants to learn how to be strong.

The battle system is another mediocre component in the battle network that is MMXCM. Typical turn-based with limi…err hyper modes that allow the character to ascend into a powerful form for a duration of the fight, a reserve character system that Final Fantasy X perfected long ago and an AP (action points) system which limits your attacks if you fall short of the usage requirement.

Mega Man X: Command Mission wants to be the Final Fantasy of the Mega Man Universe. Unfortunately, a lackluster performance tarnishes its ability to do so. What was trying to be Final Fantasy, ended up as Rogue Galaxy. If you are a die-hard Mega Man fan, nothing I can say will stop you, but honestly, you’d be better off checking out the Wikipedia article, learning the plot points, and prevent yourself from a colossal waste of time.

Rating: 4/10

Disclosure: We are provided copies of games from the game companies for some games that we review.