Until the days of the Wii and Wii U Virtual Console, I was never a Mega Man gamer, yes, I had played the games, but they never really clicked with me, so coming into the Mega Man X Legacy Collection was all new for me and I loved it.
Perhaps the coolest part of the collection is seeing the massive evolution in the games, from the first to the last, yeah, the visuals are a big part of it, but a lot of the games tried many new things, some carried into other games and some were one and done deals, but it was a great thing to experience. Starting out with number one and experiencing a more traditional Mega Man, except with wall jumping and then ending the collection with the 3d, side scroller, with more action and inter-level bosses, the amount of progression on offer was impressive. The downside to this though, was that you never really knew what you would get in one game to the next, unless you have played them before of course.
As always, Capcom have managed to make the games run very smooth, even on the 3d games, something that the other collections they have released lately, have not had to worry about. Loading up one game and being able to load a save, was also a great touch, because it meant that you now no longer needed to remember countless password combinations, however if you have them written down or venture online to acquire one, you can use them here as well; The later games have a more traditional save system built in, so nothing to worry about there. As seems to be the trend of late, the games have a variety of options for how things look when you play them, you can elect to zoom in and make things larger, or stretch them, add a border or not and more, unlike the Street Fighter collection, here you can choose from a few borders, regardless of the game you are playing.
There is a downside to these features, specifically with the pixel perfect mode, not with that itself, when you turn it on, the older games looks smooth, but turning it off, still gives you are solid looking game, though blocky. The issue is with the newer games from the collection, because of the platform they were designed for and the time they were made, they honestly look like trash compared to the others and that is not even going into the character models or such. The polygon counts are low, again expected from when it was made, but unlike the earlier games, there is nothing here to help these games look better.
Thankfully the gameplay in almost all the games, looking at you 7, is pretty darn good, with the evolution of the games at least the first 5. As I played through those, I started to feel really good about how I was going, but 6 through me, with the addition of the sword weapon. The less I say about 7 the better, but 8 was the one that really surprised me, with the multiple playable characters, each with their own ways of playing. Being honest, you are either already a Mega Man fan and know this, or you are new to the series and hoping in for the first time, what is offered here is a wonderful mix of games that gradually introduce new elements, whilst still providing a proper challenge.
As I mentioned earlier, the collection includes a lot of bonus content, the largest is the anime The Day of Sigma, while the inclusion of the anime is cool, the animation itself does not hold up today. Outside of that, there are heaps of images to see, via the Gallery and there are countless songs to listen to via the Music section, whilst the controls are a little odd, the coolest part is that the game will throw up a video of gameplay, in the background, while your music choice plays out, it is a nice touch. There are also sections dedicated to all the trailers for the games, both the Japanese and English ones and for some reason, a merchandise section, which shows just how crazy things can get with Japan and product placement.
The Mega Man X Legacy Collections, both 1 & 2 are incredible value for money any fans of Mega Man will want to pick them up. Whilst the more recent games may not offer the same visual tweaks that the older games do, they still play quite well, which in all honesty is the most important part.