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20XX – Mega blast or Mega disappointment?

 

I remember when Mighty #9 was announced. Those of us who grew up playing Megaman had extremely high hopes that this would be the spiritual successor to the Megaman series. Turns out Mighty #9 wasn’t so mighty. It checked all the boxes when it came to Megaman games. Challenging platforming, Tough bosses, cool upgrades, fun story it had those, well except for the fun story and everything else just felt off. There have been many other Megaman inspired games some very well done, others are better forgotten. So when Corey Atwood over at Stride PR got in contact with me to review the upcoming 20XX from Batterystaple and Firehose games, well I had mixed feelings. Will this be another failed attempt at a megaman style game or would it stand on its own as a fantastic platforming classic. Read on my Mediaman fans to find out.

Graphics

This is a fantastic looking retro inspired game. If mega-man X was made today, this is what it would look like. The Boss animations where great, their attacks where colorful and varied. The upgrades on your characters(will talk about this under gameplay) looked fantastic. I am a sucker for great 2D art and animation. Whether you are playing on the PS4, Switch dock or handheld mode, the game runs smooth. I especially enjoyed playing this in handheld mode, looks great on the Switch’s 720p screen or an HD T.V. Did I mention it run can run at 60fps on a 4k TV?

Audio

Love the music and explody(this is officially a word now) sounds. Very retro which is why I love it. Sounds much cleaner then the old titles that inspired it, but still very retro. Great sound overall.

Gameplay

This is where a game like this will either soar or fail miserably. It doesn’t matter how good a game looks or sounds if the game play is bad or dull. Thankfully this is 20XX’s greatest strength, the graphics and audio are just the icing on the cake. The game play is the actual cake, and its delicious. This time the cake was not a lie. When you start off you have a choice of Two different characters, the very megaman like Nina(she is even blue) and the more X like Ace. Nina used an arm cannon and Ace uses a Sword. Both feel and control great.

Much like Megaman you can choose which boss to fight, the difference is you only have 3 bosses to choose from at a time. Some will love this, others will say its to limiting. Personally love the fact that they slimmed it down a bit and made it easier to choose. Once you beat a boss you can either pick up the weapon left behind or turn it into money to purchase other upgrades.

I want to be very clear, you will die! This game is not easy and has perma-death. This could be a good or bad thing depending on how casual of a gamer you are. This is not for the week who give up easy. Much like the Megaman series its supposed to be challenging. There is no better feeling then when you beat a boss, or get through a particularly tough level. Don’t play this game tired, you need to be awake and aware to beat this game. Despite its challenge there was never a time when I felt it was cheap. When I died, I died because I choose poorly. Never felt cheated.

20XX is also proceduraly  generated, which means no run through should be the same. I plan on going back several times to take on the bosses. There is a ton of replay-ability. 20XX has daily and weekly challenges, online co-op and constantly changing levels.

Overall Score – 9/10

I cannot recommend this game enough. I had an incredible time with 20XX, even when I fell to my death I wanted to keep going. This speaks volumes about the game design.

Family Friendliness – 10/10

I found nothing wrong in this game. The bosses may be a bit scary for the really young crowd, other then that this is a great game to play in front of/ or with family.

 

 

 

Mediaman Gameplay

Bendy Chapter 4 complete