Crapshoot: Mega Man's terrible PC port


From 2010 to 2014 Richard Cobbett wrote Crapshoot, a column about rolling the dice to bring random obscure games back into the light. This week, it’s time to welcome a special guest from a very different platform to see what happens when console game ports go very wrong indeed.

Wait, I hear you cry. Mega Man? Are you actually from Mars? In what universe does the little blue bomber originally known as Rockman count as obscure? He’s had roughly 20 million games and counting. A TV series. A bad throat condition in Captain N, even! Mega Man 2 still stands as one of the most successful gaming passion projects of all time, with its developers following up on the world’s ‘meh’ response to the first game by working their asses off in their spare time and creating a platforming legend, even though Quick Man’s stage can suck it through a sewer pipe.

And yes, that’s true on the NES. But we’re not looking at the NES games. No. This Mega Man (along with a sequel, Mega Man 3) was created just for the PC… and it fails in every conceivable way to live up to the series’ legendary reputation. Mega Man? Ha! More like Smegma Man.

In the unlikely event that you’ve never heard of the Mega Man games before, here’s a quick primer. You’re Mega Man, aka Rock, a humanoid robot built by the good scientist Dr. Light to battle evil and probably do the dishes between adventures. Your rival is Dr. Wily, who apparently looked at his future and decided that anyone with a name like that would be hard pressed to run a kitten sanctuary. Instead, he opted to grow an awesome moustache and try to take over the world with reprogrammed service robots, not to mention take ridiculous advantage of Mega Man’s unwillingness to kill humans. Early on, this made some degree of sense, as warriors like Fire Man and Cut Man and Elec Man took the field. Later, he was reduced to the likes of Dust Man and Sheep Man and it frankly got a little sad.