Everyone likes to poke fun at Mighty No. 9, and for good reason. The business behind it was awful, the game itself was good but not great, and how about those backer rewards? Secretly though Inti Creates has been crafting a better game series alongside the more front-facing disaster, and now Beck (the guy from MN9) gets a second chance to be a star. Mighty Gunvolt Burst takes the core game play of the Gunvolt series and tosses in this new hero for what could easily be his definitive adventure.
This formula is not new. Players can opt to choose Beck or Gunvolt right from the start, which alters the plotline of the game. There is an initial stage to warm players up to the mechanics. Then it is off to take down the eight robot bosses in any order I see fit. Yes, it is the Mega Man template.
Price I’d Pay: $9.99
Everything feels fast and tight. Moving the characters around is a breeze and the platforming is second-to-none. The burst combo mechanic makes an appearance, which racks up stronger attacks as long as the chain isn’t broken. It is a fun metagame for sure. The game just feels good, and when I died I knew it was because of skill more than anything else.
The biggest draw here though is customization. The game allows players to adjust movement and even bullet behavior. It might sound weird, but it actually works. For example, imagine there is a boss character that requires a more angled shot to approach. Simply set that before a level and the fight becomes more enjoyable. Each ability requires CP and new abilities are collected and unlocked in various stages, but they are also permanent. Meaning whenever I collected them, they were mine regardless if I finished the stage or not.
It is a great system that encourages the concepts in the game. There are no lives and unlimited continues. Great checkpoints also help. Struggling with a certain level? Just back out and retread a previous one for a much-needed ability. The game is designed to support this. I love it. Beating bosses also unlocks new abilities to use as well as a huge CP boost. The game feels like it was designed with making revisiting levels and areas feel more like a treat than a chore.
Visually the game is very much a portable title ported to a console. There are borders on the sides of the screen, but the action remains fast and fluid. Lots of enemies and projectiles flood the screen and it rarely misses a beat. The music is also reminiscent of classic action titles. While not quite as memorable as a classic Mega Man soundtrack, it does do the job nicely.
Mighty Gunvolt Burst is exactly what I wanted it to be. A proper clone of a genre I still love to this day, with enough new to make it feel modern. The platforming is tight, the challenge is solid, and everything just feels good. I grew up loving these games, and while I am not quite as skilled as I used to be, I still enjoy the challenge they deliver.
Review copy of game provided by publisher.