Mega Man Zero/ZX Legacy Collection Review — What a Title
Mega Man Zero/ZX Legacy Collection is just the latest in a string of rather wonderful little bits of history/game collections that have seen the light of day. It's important to preserve the history of gaming, and it's becoming increasingly hard to do so thanks to the degradation of the hardware that much of it was originally released on.
Collections like this are important just in terms of their cultural importance, and the often included features like art galleries, soundtracks, and even the odd bit of behind the scenes stuff is essential to keeping this little part of our culture alive. Preservation is important, but it's also hard, and despite digital hypothetically being easier to preserve, there are always complications.
On this front, Mega Man Zero/ZX Legacy Collection is a raging success. The galleries are filled with stunning artwork and concept art, and the music player is filled to the brim with amazing pieces of old-school video game music. That, of course, is probably not why you're likely to buy this collection though.
Nothing's Cool Like The Old School
The main attraction here is the games in the collection. You get Mega Man Zero 1, 2, 3, 4, Mega Man ZX, and Mega Man ZX Advent. That's an awful lot of games at once, and each one will last you a fair chunk of time too.
On top of that, you also get the brand-new Z-Chaser mode, which basically plops you in a portion of one of the games and asks you to get through it as fast as you can. That then gives you the chance to compete against the world at large, or just for bragging rights with your friends.
The other new additions come in the form of two little difficulty buffers. While many fans will ignore these and feel no need to gatekeep or complain about their hobby becoming too easy, others will be happy to see that the games can be made easier if desired. Those are the only two outcomes; nothing negative can come of this.
Easy Come, Easy Go
The first of these two features is the Casual Scenario mode. This boosts the damage you can deal and also reduces the damage you'll receive, which should make a lot of the games a fair bit easier.
There's also the Save Assist option, which adds new checkpoints into the levels before the trickier parts to make failing less frustrating. You can choose to use one or the other or both, so it adds a nice layer to the difficulty settings already present in the game. It also means that there will be a whole new wave of fans who can possibly play the games, so that's nice too.
This isn't related to difficulty, but it is quite cool. There are a few different filters you can choose from to change how the games look. You can do things like smoothing out the graphics to make them look more modern, for example. These are a good way to get a feel true to the original hardware. Plus, with the ZX games being handheld originally, you can move around the second screen at will, which makes for a much more personalized experience.
So, that's all the new stuff, but how are the games?
The Megaist of Men
I mean, they're Mega Man games, so they're really good. While not every aspect of these games holds up nowadays, you can't deny the brilliance of design in both the platforming and combat. Every level is still sure to test you to your absolute limit, and the bosses are certain to kill you off too.
While the Mega Man Zero games are more traditional in their approach to gameplay, which is to say they're primarily platformers with some punishing combat thrown in here and there, the Mega Man ZX games are closer to being Metroidvanias. Basically, if you like Mega Man, then you're going to love this collection.
- Excellent value for money
- Great selection of games
- Very welcome new options for difficulty settings
- Graphics don't look all that great on a PC screen
- There have been reports of bugs, crashes, and saving issues, though I've not experienced them
Overall, you'd be hard-pressed to beat the Mega Man Zero/ZX Legacy Collection. All of the games are enjoyable, the new features make them far easier to consume for modern players, and the love to the series spills out of every frame. It's just a very good collection of very good games, even if the title is utterly absurd.