Preview: Mega Man The Sequel Wars

Mega Man has always been one of my favorite video game series, so I like to check out fan projects based on the series every now and again. One of the more recent projects showing promise is Mega Man The Sequel Wars – a project that aims to take Mega Man 4-6 and port them to a SEGA Genesis format just like Mega Man Wily Wars did for Mega Man 1-3.

The project is spearheaded by SokZaJelo, and a lot of teasers and information is made available on SokZaJelo’s YouTube page. While development has been going on for a period of time, a demo was released at the end of 2021 and then just now updated to give players a taste of what to expect from how the project will port Mega Man 4.

The free demo allows players access to tackle the stages of Toad Man, Dust Man, Drill Man and Bright Man, and the updated demo samples the project’s EX mode with a two-part Skull Man stage. The EX mode is a challenging re-arrangement of the game, akin to the Wily Tower in Mega Man Wily Wars. The new version of the demo also gives players more options to toggle the difficulty, allowing an easy mode or hard mode, along with an option to give the player infinite lives.

The base game will have fans of the series feeling right at home, with the stages being recreated as they were in the original NES/Famciom games. This project obviously converts the visuals and audio to the SEGA Genesis format, giving players the 16-bit visuals seen in Wily Wars. Being developed in the 2020s, though, the developers have even more tools to work with, which allows the game to look and sound even sharper than before. The Sequel Wars even has extra details such as more moving parts in the backgrounds and animations such as defeated enemies splashing out in a spread of metal parts.

There are a few options to disable these extra details if players want to go for a purer experience, but these elements add a unique touch that upgrade the presentation compared to the NES versions.

Also packed into The Sequel Wars is a co-op mode that allows two players to team up against the stages. This doesn’t seem to work in EX mode at the moment, but in the original Mega Man 4 stages, Mega Man and Roll can work together to progress through the game.

There are a few points such as the when the red platforms scroll into Dust Man’s stage that really bog the game down when in two-player mode, but, overall, the performance still holds up great. Players share the same pool of lives, but Rock and Roll each have their own weapon meters and they can be teleported to the other player if they get scrolled offscreen. If one player is defeated, the other player can hold on until a meter fills to the top, and then the second player can join back in at that point with a press of the button. I’d always thought that co-op play was something Mega Man could use more of, so this is a really great feature and one that my kids really enjoyed.

The EX mode brings a completely different experience, and the demo allows you to go through Skull Man’s reimagined stage. These stages are developed to be more challenging, and the Skull Man stage provides a very satisfying challenge to test a player’s platforming and shooting. A number of unique elements are seen in this stage, along with a couple of tense platforming moments. It will be great to see what the rest of the stages will offer in EX mode.

The demo is in a SEGA Genesis ROM format, so you will need an emulator to play the game, but this also theoretically means you could load the ROM onto a device such as an EverDrive in order to play the game on hardware.

I’ve chronicled my playthroughs of the demo on the GemuBaka YouTube channel, and you’ll be able to see that, even in demo form, there is a lot you can do in the game at this point. This is definitely a project I will keep my eye on, and it’s fit the bill perfectly as I continue to wait on that copy of Wily Wars I ordered from Limited Run Games.

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Categories: GemuBaka Feature, GemuBaka Preview

Author:indiesnack

Indie Snack is a video gaming Web site focusing on independent developers and game releases. Indie Snack will also soon have services made available to independent developers to include tools aiding them in public relations and game marketing.

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