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Updated March 10, 2005

Mega Man Legends

Rock Man. The Blue Bomber. Mega Man X. All names for the hero in what’s probably Capcom’s most successful franchise. With a résumé of more than 10 games across almost every gaming platform, Mega Man is an unstoppable robot-fighting machine. In this latest manifestation, PC gamers have been dumped a port of the 1998 PlayStation title Mega Man Legends. Unfortunately, this game neither realizes the brilliance of its predecessors nor takes advantage of the PC’s vast graphics potential.

This Mega Man is a 14-year-old boy living in the future. The icecaps have melted, covering the world with water and forcing people to live on patches of land. A mysterious treasure known as the “Mother Lode” is rumored to have the power to save the human race. But in this awful iteration the evil Dr. Wily isn’t around to stop you, nor are his colorful robot henchmen. Instead, Mega Man faces pirates and cave critters in a droning, zero-personality quest to save humanity.

It’s a 3D world, although it’s fairly obvious that the series was never meant to transcend that third dimension. Every element screams the pathetic choked cry “console port,” from the bland textures to the monotonous gameplay. Mega Man spends almost the entire game running through rectangular caverns and empty fields, shooting at the same enemies over and over. Gone is the ability to absorb your opponent’s weapon, a feature synonymous with Mega Man titles; in its place is a coin-collecting scheme. Wow.

With levels that look half-complete and a storyline more mind-numbing than a C-Span marathon, Mega Man Legends fails miserably as a PC game. Hardcore Mega Man fans should grab themselves a PC version of the superior Mega Man X4, a much better effort available in bargain bins everywhere.

— Norman Chan


 FINAL VERDICT
PC Gamer 25%

   

100% - 90%
EDITORS' CHOICE - We're battening down the hatches and limiting our coveted Editors' Choice award to games that score a 90% or higher. It's not easy to get here, and darn near impossible to get near 100%. Games in this range come with our unqualified recommendation, an unreserved must-buy score.

89% - 80%
EXCELLENT - These are excellent games. Anything that scores in this range is well worth your purchase, and is likely a great example of its genre. This is also a scoring range where we might reward specialist/niche games that are a real breakthrough in their own way.

79% - 70%
GOOD - These are pretty good games that we recommend to fans of the particular genre, though it's a safe bet you can probably find better options.

69% - 60%
ABOVE AVERAGE - Reasonable, above-average games. They might be worth buying, but they probably have a few significant flaws that limit their appeal.

59% - 50%
MERELY OKAY - Very ordinary games. They're not completely worthless, but there are likely numerous better places to spend your gaming dollar.

49% - 40%
TOLERABLE - Poor quality. Only a few slightly redeeming features keep these games from falling into the abyss of the next category.

39% - 0%
DON'T BOTHER - Just terrible. And the lower you go, the more worthless you get. Avoid these titles like the plague, and don't say we didn't warn you!


Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties  77%
Brigade E5: New Jagged Union  54%
EverQuest II: Echoes of Faydwer  85%
Eragon  22%
Drakan: Order of the Flame  69%
Driver  78%
Drome Racers  59%
Ducati World Racing  28%
Duke Nukem: Manhattan Project  75%
Dune  25%
Dungeon Keeper 2  89%
Dungeon Siege  91%
Dungeon Siege: Legends of Aranna  80%
Earth & Beyond  80%
Earth 2150: Lost Souls  80%
Echelon: Wind Warriors  79%
Elder Scrolls III: Bloodmoon  84%
Emergency Fire Response  70%
Emergency Rescue  24%
Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom  72%