Monday, January 19, 2009

Mega Man 3: Retro or Dated?

I am addicted to Mega Man. My first experience was with the PS3 demo for Mega Man 9, and although I received game over after game over, I couldn't stop playing until I reached Concrete Man. Therefore, when I found myself without a new game to play, I cashed in some of my Wii points for Mega Man 3.

I wasn't disappointed. Mega Man 3 is tough as nails and a blast to play. When I started to notice some relics from the NES era such as my health bar sporadically blinking and the level backgrounds being loaded before my eyes, I marveled at the port developers' attention to detail. However, my admiration turned to consternation when the game started slowing down with just two enemies on the screen.

I fully understand that this painstakingly realistic emulation probably impresses people who have played the original game on the NES, but I know I'm not the only person who's frustrated by this lack of quality. Even if a staggering forty percent of the people who download this game have played the original, that leaves sixty percent of the potential audience unlikely to appreciate the relics.

I seriously doubt that removing gameplay slowdown would be a challenge for Capcom's port developers, and I'm confused as to why they would choose to leave it in. I can understand some of the appeal of quaint little glitches like the pulsating health bar, but I can't fathom Capcom's reasons for leaving the gameplay impaired for the port.

Gaming quality has come a long way in the last twenty years, and I know I'm not the only one who appreciates this progress.