The Mega Man Battle Network Legacy Collection is a bundle that can be bought as a complete set or as two separate volumes. With games that originated on Nintendo’s handhelds, the collection brings together 10 games from the beloved Mega Man Battle Network series, which has over time expanded into anime and comics. While the novel toy link features found in the original versions are not supported (for obvious reasons), this collection offers additional features like a gallery of illustrations and music, as well as online play. Here’s our take, based on the PlayStation 4 version.
One of the strengths of the Mega Man Battle Network Legacy Collection is the variety of gameplay mechanics it offers. Players must navigate both the physical world and the digital world in a future where the Internet has become an integral part of everyday life. People use portable devices called “PETs” to interact with the virtual world, and NetNavis (digital avatars with unique personalities and abilities) assist them in their tasks. However, as with any technological advancement, there are those who seek to exploit it for their own gain. In this world, young protagonist Lan Hikari and his NetNavi, MegaMan.EXE, work together to combat various cyber threats, using their wits, skills, and an arsenal of special moves and weapons known as Battle Chips.
And while the general premise of the internet getting pretty big didn’t age too well, each of the ten games comes with its own story, characters, and challenges to overcome. Players must explore various virtual environments, battling against other NetNavis and computer viruses using a strategic real-time combat system. They can customize their own Battle Chip decks, creating powerful combinations to take on tougher foes. Along the way, they’ll encounter a diverse cast of characters, both friendly and hostile, and uncover the mysteries behind various cybernetic phenomena. The games also feature elements of role-playing games, allowing players to level up their NetNavi and unlock new abilities as they progress.
The graphics have been updated to fit modern standards, but they still retain the classic feel of the original games and definitely won’t blow you away. The retro aesthetic and chiptune music are sure to evoke nostalgia in fans of the series though, and they’ve managed to make sure that enough polish was added to make the games not look overly dated. Additionally, the Legacy Collection offers a gallery of illustrations and music that players can unlock as they progress through the games. This is a great addition for fans who want to dive deeper into the series and its history. The music in particular stands out, as it has always been a highlight of the Battle Network games. The gallery is a nice way to revisit some classic tracks and appreciate the art and design of the series.
One thing that I appreciated about the Mega Man Battle Network Legacy Collection was the addition of online play. While the original games were limited to local multiplayer, the Legacy Collection allows players to face off against each other online. This feature adds a new level of challenge and excitement to the games, as players can compete against others from around the world. However, I did notice some lag during online matches, though this was never bothersome.
However, the collection is not without its flaws. One of the most notable things is the lack of quality-of-life improvements, for instance in the rather dated looking menu systems. In addition, the game can be quite difficult at times, which may be off-putting to some players if they don’t come into these games with previous Battle Network experience. And while the games are enjoyable, they are essentially the same as the originals with no real updates or enhancements. This may be disappointing for players who were hoping for a more modernized version of the games.
Another small issue is the relative lack of extras included with the collection. While the gallery of illustrations and music is a nice touch, some players were hoping for additional content like concept art, developer commentary or ‘making of’ content. The absence of these extras feels like a missed opportunity to provide deeper insight into the series, especially because of the high number of games included here.
Overall, the Mega Man Battle Network Legacy Collection is a solid bundle that offers a wealth of gameplay and nostalgia for fans of the series. The online play adds a new level of excitement, but the lack of quality-of-life improvements and extras may be disappointing for some players. If you’re a fan of the series or looking to dive into the world of Mega Man Battle Network, this collection is definitely worth checking out – and it’s great to finally have these on PlayStation.