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Review: Mighty No. 9

Mighty No. 9. Its launch wasn't exactly all that great. Yet, the question remains: Is Mighty No. 9 worth the wait and cost of entry? Well, let's get right to this mighty review. Minor mighty spoilers ahead.

Title: Mighty No. 9

Publisher: Deep Silver

Co-Publisher: Comcept

Developer: Inti Creates Co.

Platform: PS4, PS3, PSVITA, XBOXONE, XBOX360, WIIU, NINTENDO 3DS, STEAM, PC (PC Version Reviewed)

Release Date: June 21, 2016

Players: 1-2

MSRP: USD 19.99 (Review Copy Received via Kickstarter Backing)

Mighty No. 9 opens with a story about a city of robots that have gone berserk and are destroying everything around them and it's up to you, Beck, to stop them!

The strongest aspect of this title is the gameplay. It's solid, it plays well, the controls are responsive, and you can be customized to your own liking. Clearly a lot of work was put into making the gameplay as responsive as possible, because you are going to need it for some of the most frustrating levels you can hope to deal with in a platforming game.

Courtesy of Inti Creates and Comcept

The level design is at times atrocious. From needing multiple pixel perfect timed jumps to avoid instant death spikes, to cliffs and traps you would need lighting fast reflexes and or clairvoyance to avoid you will have a great deal of difficulty with some of these frankly punishingly unfair levels. I spent over an hour on the final boss stage alone trying to figure out just how to beat the level, let alone beating the final boss itself. While I had fun in several of the stages, some of them were so punishingly unfair I dreaded going through it again just to try and beat it.

A lot of the character designs seem to borrow somewhat from some of the other Mega Man titles, and I am not talking about just the main character's resemblance to the Blue Bomber himself. One of the characters essentially just screams at me that he is based off Zero from the Mega Man X series, and several of the other bosses seem to be simplified redesigns of other Mega Man X bosses. As for the final boss, I kid you not when I say is is essentially a giant blob that reminds me of Pac-Man if he were a pink energy ball and whose second stage resembles a giant demonic pink glowing flower that chases you around the stage. Each boss also has a personality quirk of some kind that they make sure to repeat often throughout the course of the game.

Courtesy of Inti Creates and Comcept

Following traditional Mega Man style, the bosses become a pushover to beat once you have the enemy weapon that is their weakness. How do you figure out a bosses weakness? After you beat your first boss, whichever boss that may happen to be, the next level you go to will offer you advice and whichever boss you just beat is the next boss weakness. That won't help you through the stage much, but at least you'll know how to deal with the boss itself.

Story wise you aren't getting anything impressive, it's a near identical narrative to several of the Mega Man X titles. While the cut-scenes are nice to look at you'll find yourself wondering if Sigma has somehow made his way into this game with how the plot moves forward. It is simple but at the same time, it works.

Graphics are alright and have a classic Mega Man feel, and they look nice enough. They aren't anything to write home about, but they work well with the game and nothing about them makes me think they look dated, but nothing about them makes me think they look special.

Finally, the music really wasn't that memorable for me. It fit well within the game itself, but none of it really made me say "Wow that sounds amazing. I could listen to this for hours!" like some Mega Man titles I have played.

Courtesy of Inti Creates and Comcept

All that being said is it a good game? Is it worth twenty dollars, the time investment, and frustration that some of the levels offer? I spent 6 hours playing and beating this game. Certainly not any speed running record, and I have a lot of experience with this kind of game. Honestly, though, I can see myself playing this game again and trying out all of the various challenge modes. As frustrating as some of the levels were. As generic and average looking as the bosses are. With a lot of it all being average, I had a lot of fun. Like I said in the beginning, the gameplay is solid. It plays smoothly, and the challenge of the game is not insurmountable even though some of it feels like it was made deliberately harder to increase play time.

Truly, Mighty No. 9 feels and looks uninspired. In fact, it may as well be Mega Man. It follows the formula and it takes no risks. It has solid gameplay, some fun platforming, and has a fair amount of challenge to it. At the end of the day the game itself is not great, it's not bad, it's average. I had a good time playing it and can see myself playing it again in the near future for the challenge modes.

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Just a man who has been playing video games against doctors orders for nearly 30 years. The 80's was filled with idiots. Want to reach me? @JoshuaWiitala on Twitter.
Seattle, Washington Website