Sunday, July 31, 2011

Some gaming procrastination

With this weekend experiencing temporary hiatus of tabletop games I've been bothering a few friends and looking through my video games. With this I found an old gem of megaman battle networks.

It's almost embarrassing to say that I enjoyed this game. With the most silly and horrible of plots to make those some of those bad kids cartoons look outsandingly written, I can't help but like the actual game aspects of it. I don't know how well it did when it was released, couldn't care really I don't even think I got it when it was released. I just had heard some rumors of how it's system worked and thought it would be worth investigating years ago. Megaman battle network is a strange idea of collectible card games and RPG with just a hint of action. Not being familiar with megaman games any wonderful cameos or even what the enemies are called were and still are completely lost to me but I know how much I love to hate their incarnations here.

First things first, a brief description of how the game works. Two 3x3 grids are set next to each other. At the start of the "Battle" Megaman can move in one and the enemies in the other. There are a few effects that change this but that's not really the crux of it. After that you have "chips" to send to megaman to use. Chips being a funny refluffing of cards as this is a digital world megaman is going around blasting viruses in. The chips are one techincly one use items that give an effect, usually being some sort of attack or healing effect. You hit a button and use them in a first in last out order. Beyond that you have the megabuster to fire about when you're not trying to get in the major attacks. There is effectively no stats in megaman battle networks, you have your HP and can upgrade the megabuster but that still isn't making much of a difference compared to what a use of a chip can dish out.

What really makes the game go around is the deck making, drawing, and playing system for the chips. Typical arbitrary must have 30 chips in a deck to use megaman. After that you get 5 random chips, these will stick with you if you want them or not, use any number of them and they'll be replaced next "turn". Turn being  a very loose sense, it's some timer that you can even ignore but once you hit a button you can play with the games drawing mechanic. If you don't like the options or want to go for something more advanced you can choose to have megaman not have any chips that turn and get 5 more chips up to a maximum of 15 to choose from. Catch is turn after you send any chips to megaman the ones that are not in your first 5 go away and you have to start waiting for more again.

Sending the chips to megaman has some wrinkles to it. You can send any number of the same type of card (canon, heal 10, sword, ect) or cards of the same 'code' which is just an alphabet letter. Two can't quite mix and match you're sending it type wise or code wise. This makes the wait for 5 not a bad idea with all but the first five vanishing. You'll usually be able to get 3 chips for that turn which is usually enough to end a random encounter. This leads to a lot of deck building ideas, if you have too many mixed codes you're just hoping for the same type of chip to show up leaving you buster dueling generic enemies when you don't have to, or boss situations where your healing item is out of code so you're once again buster dueling and hoping you don't get hit.

Speaking of getting hit, Megaman battle network is actually avery actiony RPG that is worthy out of what I've seen of megaman games. You move around the grid avoiding attacks at the same time trying to get the chance to fire off one of your chips for massive amounts of damage. Otherwise you're buster dueling by mashing the button for the blaster and ticking off 1 HP of 50+ regular enemies or 600+ bosses. Bosses have a varity of gimmicks that their attacks are based on. They all have a tell though to watch for so you can avoid that big attack coming at you which are not just straight up how to dodge ideals, very fun and actually made me like action based RPGs again in a long time. Even if it was silly and I hate myself for reading the dialog. If I could find a game with a similar different take on active time battle RPG systems and not have a plot or presentation that makes my brain hurt I'd be ecstatic.

So a question, anything you games you guys hate to love? Or just ones that you have to break out of the closet every once in the while to rediscover how much you enjoyed it?


  1. Hmmm, never played it, but it sounds pretty cool. Megaman is one of my favorite games of all time.

  2. actually every old RPG was f***ing epic, playing them today remembers you to the old days, but it ain't the same as it was back then!

    one of my personal favs on NES were secret of mana.

  3. This actually sounds half decent, I can't think of a game I hate to love lol, there was a game I played ages ago that I did like, but can't remember at all, it combined RTS with a fighting game, you moved pieces around like in a RTS but if two pieces met you had a fight, so even if you had a weaker piece, with enough skill you could probably win. There are probably several games out like this now too, so it's probably going to he hard to find, I just remember it was for the PS1.

  4. Well, I just have to revisit Digimon World every now and then. It's a pretty mediocre game, but I really like it. It's always exciting to see what sort of Digimon you can evolve your partner into.

  5. One game I have to rediscover on a yearly basis is Vampire the Masquerade Bloodlines. One of the best PC RPGs I've ever played and I don't think I'll play anything like it again.

  6. sounds like an interesting game.