Released: December 2004 Playstation 2
Sorry for the long delay between reviewing Mega Man X7/Xtreme and Mega Man X8. My schedule has been a little busy lately. That and I wanted to beat this game again on normal difficulty like I do with all the other games in the series which took much longer than expected.
After the failure that Mega Man X7 was Capcom decided to keep the game 2D. Like the past three games in the X series, Keiji Inafune wasn't involved with this game although the games art designers did consult Inafune before changing the overall character styles. Tatsuya Yoshikawa designed X, Zero, and Axl to imitate Revoltech figures.
This game also came out on the PC in Asia and Europe, although a downloadable version from GameStop could be bought in North America.
Reploids continue to rebell and their is no sign of it being stopped. Mankind has developed an elevator that leads to the moon so it can be colonized. The development is lead by a Reploid named Lumine, a new generation Reploid. The New Generation Reploids are able to use DNA to change their shapes and are perfect for the job of helping create the colony. The best thing about these new Reploids is that they can't go Maverick. Axl is also a new generation Reploid.
You can choose between Easy, Normal, and Hard mode is X8. If you choose easy then you wont fight the true final boss.
Since the 3D gameplay of X7 was awful we are back to 2D gameplay and their is no ducking in this game for some reason. In the intro stage you will notice that robots you destroy drop little triangle things called metals. They act as currency and you can buy items from the R&D Lab on the stage select screen. Also hidden well in stages are rare metals which contain power-ups that you can then buy at the R&D Lab.
Like in X7 you bring two characters into a stage, but this time when one dies the other can still go through the stage. When you destroy enough enemies or collect attack diamonds your attack gauge will be full and you can preform the Double Attack by pressing R2 which takes a big chunk of health away from a boss. In order for it to work though you have to right next to the boss, facing them.
When yo get hit part of your lost health will be red. If you switch out to the other character the red part of health will gradually refill.
Controlling the characters in this game is fine, but the controls for when they're holding onto a wall feels a little off like it's slippery. Axl's controls have been improved so now you can just hold the square button and he will fire rapidly. His hover controls have also been changed; now you have to press the X button twice rather than holding it down. I found Axl's copy shot ability way more useful and easier to use in X8 as well.
I think Mega Man X8 wins the award for lamest Mavericks in the series. You thought a robotic onion was bad?
- Dark Mantis
- Bamboo Pandamonium
- Earthrock Trilobyte
- Gigabolt Man-O-War
- Avalanche Yeti
- Burn Rooster
- Gravity Antonion
- Optic Sunflower
Although to be far, it is harder to think of names for mavericks than for Robot Masters.
Before you head out to a stage you get to pick who you want to be your navigator. In the last couple of X games it's been Alia, but now we have Layer and Pallette. Each navigator has their own specialties. Layer will tell you information about bosses, Pallette will tell you about stage routes, and Alia will give you general information. you also have the choice to go to a stage with no navigators.
The stages in this game have tons of variety. We have a Metal Gear stealth level, a level that ranks you on how well you do in a challenge room, gravity switching, being chased by a giant robot for most of the level, trying to shoot down a maverick over a city, etc. In some stages you fight Vile as a mid-boss. After stages you get a cutscene like in X7 which helps progress the story.
You have three final stages in X8: Jakob, Gateway, and Sigma Palace.
This game is EVIL!!! Easy mode is normal difficulty in any other X game. So normal is difficult while the hard mode makes you think that the developers want you to hate the game. Most of the difficulty comes from the level design and if you're playing on either normal or hard, the bosses. When bosses are low on health they go into overdrive like in X3 where they unleash an attack that does so much damage it might as well be a one-hit K.O. Thankfully when you're playing on easy you get a infinite amount of lives. I liked that the true final boss' first form had a different weakness depending on what mavericks overdrive attack they were using.
Better than X7's, but I don't like the new design the artists game the characters. Axl still looks normal, but X and Zero's character models look ugly. The backgrounds look great and I like how they designed Bamboo Pandamonium's stage so it wraps around itself. I like the new design for X's armors in this game though and Sigma's design.
Not that much of X8's music stood out to me, it isn't terrible, it just blends in to much. Although the game does have my favorite piece of music from the X series.
Well before beating X8…on easy I had never beaten the game before and only played it once so I hardly played this game. If you have the game set to easy you don't have to back to stages constantly to collect rare metal upgrades just the X's armor upgrades. Speaking of which their are two types of armor for X to wear, but in this game you and pick what parts of the two armors you want to equip. When you beat the game on easy you can save the game clear data so the game will set to normal or hard with all 8 mavericks beaten and whatever armors you obtained.
Mega Man X8 will take a take a while for a player to get used to before they can enjoy playing the game. I really hated all the rare metal collecting in this game and some of the level design. Playing the game on easy you wont have to collect rare metals, but you won't fight the true final boss and get the real ending.
This defiantly shouldn't be your first game to play in the X series due to it's above average difficulty and collecting.
A copy of Mega Man X8 goes for around $20. It's worth playing for a fan but be warned of it's difficulty.
So the game scores a 6.5/10 (better than above average, near good). The game will most likely be enjoyed by fans more than a new comer. If you can find it for cheap than I would get it. To be far X8 is still more enjoyable to play than X7.
Thank you for reading my review of Mega Man X8. Feel free to leave a comment or subscribe. One more game to go in the X series, Mega Man Xtreme 2 for the Game Boy Color.
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