Mega Man 9 Is Coming To WiiWare In Retro Style

Time to rejoice! As you might remember, a while ago we mentioned that Mega Man 9 had received an OFLC rating. We did not know the platform at the time, but speculated it could very well be a WiiWare release due to Capcom's traditionally strong support of Nintendo. The upcoming issue of Nintendo Power confirms our suspicions - Mega Man 9 is indeed heading to WiiWare.

According to an interview in the magazine, the game will pretty much be a Mega Man fan's wet dream with 8-bit graphics, 8-bit music and sound effects and 8 Robot Masters. Basically, it's a whole new NES game and not a glossy Mega Man makeover!

The 8 Robot Masters appear to be:

  • Magma Man
  • Galaxy Man
  • Jewel Man
  • Concrete Man
  • Hornet Man
  • Plug Man
  • Tornado Man
  • Splash Woman (Yes, the first female Robot Master!)

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Here are the Nintendo Power scans in low-res:
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Check out the screenshots from the scan:

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Here is a transcription of some of the article:

Dreams do come true. The new issue of Nintendo Power is hitting mailboxes, and inside is the scoop on what we've been waiting for: Solid, concrete proof of Mega Man 9.

While there is no confirmation yet of its existence as a game for Xbox Live Arcade or the PlayStation Network, at least we do now know that it will be a downloadable game in a place where it most makes sense: WiiWare.

Further, the rumors of an 8-bit artstyle were not only true, but quite literal: So far, this looks just like one of the NES games, rather than the later fare of Mega Man 7 and Mega Man 8, each of which has its fans and detractors.

So what's the story? Apparently the rumor of a more "standard" story holds true as well, as robots are on the rampage, and Dr. Wily is back; only this time, he says that the robot attacks are the fault of Mega Man's creator, Dr. Light. And so it falls to Mega Man to prove his creator's innocence.

So who are the bad boys of metal musculature causing this high-tech havoc? The roster reads thusly: Magma Man, Galaxy Man, Jewel Man, Concrete Man, Hornet Man, Plug Man, Tornado Man, and Splash... Woman?

They each inhabit a trap-filled lair that reflects their respective themes, leading to Mega Man traversing molten material in Magma Man's domain, while Tornado Man's stage features spinning magnetic platforms which allow the Blue Bomber to defy gravity. And Plug Man's stage features certain walls that will force the Titanium Titan to square off against shadowy dopplegangers when he walks past.

And of course, when a Robot Master gets pwned, Mega Man will acquire their special weapons for his own personal arsenal, such as Galaxy Man's Black Hole Bombs, for which he'll have to find the next boss in line to whom it works against. Hmm, Black Hole Bomb? I bet Hornet Man might have a hard time escaping that...

The article also provides some insights from franchise mastermind Keiji Inafune of Capcom, who these days is perhaps better known for such fare as Onimusha, Dead Rising, and Lost Planet. According to Inafune, the simple fun of a classic Mega Man game "doesn't fit into the grandiose and expansive world that the consumer gaming industry has become, and so you have to make games that match the current expectations."

He goes on to say that if he did push to have a new game like the classic Mega Man made, it would be criticized for things like being simplistic, outdated, or too expensive, thus making it too difficult to bring it out in the current climate. And that's where programs like WiiWare come in, from which the popularity of retrogaming services such as the Virtual Console lead to the group to decide to make a new "NES" game.

The new game is being developed by Inti Creates, who have a wealth of experience in the Mega Man franchise with their creation of the Mega Man Zero and ZX titles, plus MegaMan Battle Chip Challenge. In addition, to celebrate Mega Man's 20th anniversary, Mega Man ZX Advent featured a mini game of three levels made in the NES Mega Man style.

For controlling the Blue Bomber, players will be able to hold the Wii Remote sideways in NES-style, with the control pad moving Mega Man and the two buttons set to Jump and Fire. Doesn't look like there will be any flashy shaking going on here.

But while he says there are no new mechanical devices for Mega Man to obtain, Inafune states that the robodog Rush makes a triumphant return, as they wanted to make sure some of the other classic characters are in.

The reason for the return to NES-style graphics is due to the desire to please longtime fans who wanted to play a new game that was like the originals. In addition, the popularity of retro graphics on things like t-shirts and other paraphernalia "made it seem like the right time" to bring out an oldschool game. Plus, they wanted to show what the upper-limits of 8-bit graphics could do.

But will we get to see an 8-bit Bass and Treble?

And in addition to the graphics, the music will be styled in an 8-bit fashion, as well as 8-bit styled cinema cutscenes. "I am sure when people see the opening scenes- new content with 8-bit graphics- they're going to be very excited."

In terms of difficulty, Inafune says they aren't holding back for players whose reflexes might have deteriorated over the years, but they will try to keep it as close to that of the NES games as possible. Sounds good to me.

While the "cycloptic monsters" (aka Devils) won't be in, Inafune promises lots of exciting new bosses, plus the return of mainstay series cannon-fodder such as Sniper Joes and Mets.

Rumors suggested that Mega Man's mysterious older brother, Proto Man, would be playable, but when asked of other playable characters, Inafune said that it's classified; "you'll have to wait and see."

With Mega Man 2 as the most highly regarded of the series, Inafune states that he'd like to surpass that with this game, and hopefully be able to make "a whole lot more."

And finally, to the Mega Man fans, he says: "The moment you've been waiting for is here! We're not just giving you Mega Man 9, we're giving you a new NES game. This is a game that brings back the fun of the old games, and I hope you all enjoy it!"

Be sure to check out The Mega Man Network for the other scans from the article and a peek at the included screens, and check out the new issue of Nintendo Power for the full interview.

This is really the type of game we hoped would show up on WiiWare. Consider us extremely excited!

Source: The Mega Man Network

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