Mega Man Mania was an anniversary game for GameBoy Advance that was supposed to be released around the same time when Mega Man Anniversary Collection was released on PS2, GameCube and Xbox. It was supposed to be the five GameBoy Mega Man games with added colours and nifty borders. After a long wait it never materialized, as CAPCOM supposedly had lost the source codes. This happens all the time in the industry, but because of things like this we’ll never see any of the Saturn games properly ported to modern consoles.
A fan named NMario and his team has taken a job unto himself to resurrect this project and create Mega Man Mania. To quote him;
“This fan game mimics the style of Capcom’s unreleased Mega Man Mania. It will feature 4 previous robot masters, one from each Game Boy game.”
I was initially pretty excited of this project, but this line here proves that it isn’t Mega Man Mania, and MMMania is just an inspiration for the project. Yes, NMario takes the same road as many other developers, indie or not. This Mega Man World is nothing short of… well, I hate to say it, but it’s unnecessary. It mimics the GameBoy Mega Man style rather being one and seems only to feature only four Robot Masters. Take account that there’s five GameBoy games, so I guess Sunstar of the Stardroids is the End Boss or the like.
I’m not malicious towards this project, don’t read me wrong, but NMario and folks have no reason to make this game. We already have bunch of FLASH Mega Man games, and some of them are actually pretty damn good, like Rokko-chan. If they’re not going to actually get hands down and create Mega Man Mania, what’s the point? Better yet, if they want to create a game in spirit of GameBoy Mega Man games, they could create completely new game and characters using those games as inspiration. It would be the same thing.
This method of making a game like it’s inspirational source was, but making it with better physics, goes against the spirit of the project. It’s duality what lies in there, and with this duality NMaro and his friends can say pretty much anything and keep his face. I ask again; why not just make Mega Man Mania? It’s a game the fandom has been wanting for some time, and these people with knowledge and skill are practically wasting their time on making a pet project.
NMario presents a kind of microcosm of what is happening in the industry. Young developers that have no real experience outside video games creating games that they want to make. To create a game you need to know a lot of stuff outside games. In Mega Man it would be nice to know about robotics, AI, history, sci-fi and so on. Especially about androids, human relations with machines and psychology if you were going to work with Mega Man X (which a lot of people at CAPCOM didn’t do.) If they’re going create their own stage designs, I truly hope that they will not only study designs outside Mega Man games as well, but architecture in general. This should help them to design a proper stages and stage themes. The musics they might as well take straight from the GameBoy games. Most of them are good renders of the songs we already heard on the NES, and then we have awesome original songs like Pluto’s theme in Mega Man (World) V. However, all signs at the moment are pointing towards self-centred artistic view.
I hope NMario and his team will be making a good product, something we all can enjoy without really noticing the “fan” aspect of the project. However, realities are realities, and this is but one of the many projects regarding Mega Man that has every bit of good intentions, but misses points that are extremely vital. The other project would be Mega Man X Corruption, but that game has lost so much value as a proper Mega Man game that it needs its own post some day.
I present a challenge to NMario &co.; either create Mega Man Mania as CAPCOM intended, or create a Mega Man (World) VI for the GameBoy. And don’t make it a Flash game.
And sometimes fans just create games that play like Mega Man, but are their own entity altogether