Mighty No. 9 Review
What is Mighty No. 9?
Mighty No.9 is a new game made in the same style as the games in the Mega Man series.
It is a 2D action platformer using 3D graphics.
The game has you running, jumping shooting and dashing your way through stages, 8 of which you can play in any order you want. The game’s core gameplay focuses on absorbing energy called Xel from enemies.
When you beat any of the 8 main stages, your hero “Beck” can transform into a new form to unleash new attacks against enemies.
In Mighty No. 9, Robots around the country have gone crazy and are destroying everything. As Beck (Mighty No. 9), you have to locate your former brothers the “Mighty Numbers” 1 though 8 and defeat them to return them to the good side.
The core gameplay loop of the game involves you shooting enemies to weaken them and then dash (AcXelerate) into them to destroy them and absorb their powers. Those powers will increase your defense, give you health refills, increase the power/piercing of your shots or increase your speed. You can also destroy enemies without absorbing them but you get no reward.
Mighty No. 9 is a MS Windows, OS X, Linux, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and Wii U game. Playstation Vita and Nintendo 3DS versions are still in development at the time of this review.
DLC also came out for this game, allowing you to play as a mysterious robot called Ray. The DLC adds an additional stage to play. Once you’ve beaten this new stage, you can play as Ray for the entire game.
This game is rated E for Everyone. It features voices in English, Japanese and French.
Who made it?
Mighty No.9 was made by Comcept and Inti Creates and published by Deep Silver and Comcept collaboratively.
Comcept and Inti Creates are people who are mostly known for developing the more recent Mega Man releases such as Mega Man Zero, Mega Man ZX, Mega Man 9, Mega Man 10 and Inti Creates also developed Azure Striker Gunvolt, a similar type of game. Comcept is home to Keiji Inafune, widely credited for being the “father” of Mega Man.
Mighty No.9 was funded on Kickstarter, raising almost 4 000 000 $.
Development has been bumpy. Various issues mainly with having to release the game on so many platforms delayed the game for a long time before it could be released.
There were also a few issues with the community and with the questionable choices regarding the direction of the latest trailers for the game.
IMPORTANT: This review applies to the PlayStation 4 and MS Windows versions of the game. You should avoid the WiiU version because it has been reported to cause trouble with consoles. PlayStation 3 version has framerate issues.
What is great about it?
- The bosses have a lot of personality and are fun to fight.
- The music is good. Manami Matsumae who originally made music for the Mega Man series is a consultant sound designer on the game.
- The levels are well-designed for high-level play and are fun to blast through.
- The core gameplay loop is fun is satisfying to master.
- The game controls are very responsive and allow for high level technical gameplay.
- Dashing mechanics are the main focus. The game allows you to dash infinite amounts of time in the air and it makes the game very fast-paced. You are very much encouraged to complete stages as fast as possible.
- You can switch between modern music or retro music.
- You can play one stage as Call, Beck’s radio spotter. She has a completely different gameplay.
- EX Mode allows you to play extra challenges. There is also coop challenges and PvP race challenges.
- The game is fully voiced in 3 different languages (English, Japanese and French)
- Multiple higher difficulty settings (Including an Instant-Death mode where you die in one hit)
- The game is challenging. (If you like challenge, you should like this game)
- There is a sound test in the options menu.
- Physical version includes a small poster and small artbook.
What is not so good about it?
- Technical issues on some of the platforms. (See above)
- Beyond the 8 main stages, there is only the intro stage, Call’s stage and 2 final stages. It feels like the game could use a couple more stages to feel more complete.
- Instant death hazards like spikes ignore Beck’s post-hit invincibility. Can be frustrating sometimes.
- PlayStation 4 version sound volumes make the music very quiet. It is recommended you leave the music at 100%, lower everything else at around 20% and increase the volume of your TV or sound system.
- PlayStation 4 version has a couple framerate issues in some instances: Triggering the explosion of a Battalion missile at Xel blocks in the final stage is a very obvious one that is troublesome.
- Switching between Beck’s different forms is hard to get used to and requires the player to press too many buttons. In the heat of the game, it’s confusing to learn and isn’t intuitive enough.
- Beck’s forms don’t seem useful enough and consume a bit too much energy.
- Some of Beck’s moves are not explained so you have to look through the Gameplay Tips menu to learn about them. Except for Beck’s forms powers, this is a minor issue.
- Voice-overs explaining things while you play repeat every time you replay a section of a stage. When dying multiple times, this can get annoying.
- The ending of the game feels abrupt and too short.
- Cutscenes have no lip-sync.
- Beck pops out of a ladder too fast when getting close to the top of one.
- Only one level in the game features Call. Her gameplay is nice but it feels like she should have more levels.
- When the network has problems on the PlayStation 4 version, EX Mode will pause the game to let you know even if you are not playing a coop or VS race.
- On the PlayStation 4 version, if you are in EX Mode, loading can take a long time if the system has trouble reaching the network.
- The game is challenging. (If you can’t handle difficult challenges and timing, you might think this game is too hard. And there is no easier difficulty setting.)
- No easier difficulty setting.
Pick up this game if…
- You like Mega Man and you like the fast-paced highly-challenging type of gameplay similar to Mega Man X and Mega Man Zero.
- You enjoy replaying a game with added challenges and rules.