Mega Man 9 vs. Mega Man 10

Mega Man 9 vs. Mega Man 10

Bring back that 8-bit magic

A.J. Maciejewski

Written by for Versus on

Back in 2008, Capcom revived the original Mega Man franchise with a brand new 8-bit installment which itself received a sequel shortly after. So, let's explore these 2 retro revivals and see which one is worthier of its bolts.

Screenshots of Mega Man 9 and Mega Man 10
Mega Man 9 and Mega Man 10 fantastically recapture the wonder of their predecessors

Mega Man 9

First up, Mega Man 9 released in 2008 and it was the very first digital game that I ever purchased. The throwback to the classic formula made for an authentic retro experience and I loved my time with it. However, I thought the removal of Mega Man's slide move and the inability to charge his Mega Buster were strange decisions. Plus, I noticed many assets were recycled from past Mega Man games, especially Mega Man 2. Although these minor aspects made me somewhat disappointed at first, I had an absolute blast with Mega Man 9 and I thoroughly enjoy replaying it whenever I get the chance. I also own the soundtrack and it's just awesome!

Mega Man 9's Robot Masters are an eclectic bunch and consist of Concrete Man, Tornado Man, Splash Woman, Plug Man, Jewel Man, Hornet Man, Magma Man, and Galaxy Man. Their stage designs are tough and fully bring back the classic level of challenge that the early NES games were famous for while the boss fights are spot-on for nostalgic fans. I especially enjoyed fighting Dr. Wily in his dinosaur Wily Machine and the final journey there is nothing short of grueling yet ultimately rewarding.

Screenshots of Proto Man and Bass in Mega Man 9 and Mega Man 10
Playing as 8-bit Proto Man and Bass is so much fun...

Mega Man 10

When Mega Man 10 debuted in 2010, it was a very familiar experience although it featured some nifty new elements. For starters, you can choose to play through the campaign as either Mega Man or Proto Man as well as an 8-bit rendition of Bass as DLC. Sure, Mega Man 9 had Proto Man as add-on content but he's available in Mega Man 10 right off the bat. Anyway, there's also an easy difficulty but that makes the challenge far too unsatisfying. Speaking of which, I find that Mega Man 10 has a slightly fairer level of challenge to it than Mega Man 9. Specifically, there aren't as many annoying death traps and Mega Man 10's bosses require slightly more strategy to defeat.

Of course, there's a whole new collection of Robot Masters including Blade Man, Pump Man, Commando Man, Chill Man, Sheep Man, Strike Man, Nitro Man, and Solar Man. The fact that there are added challenges to take on both separately and in the main campaign makes mastering the cleverly designed stages and enjoyable boss fights even more fun. With that said, the array of weaponry in Mega Man 10 is fairly humdrum when compared to other games in the series. Thankfully, the soundtrack is even better than Mega Man 9's, in my opinion, and the Wily Machine boss with a pirate hat is just plain funny to me. It's touches like this that make Mega Man games stand out.

Screenshots of Rush transformations in Mega Man 9 and Mega Man 10
Hey, Mega Man, what's the Rush?

I enjoyed revisiting these classic Mega Man games but I have to pick an overall winner. It's a very close call but I'll choose...

Winner Mega Man 10

Mega Man 9 feels like an old-school Mega Man game through and through but I find that it has a bit of retro baggage, especially when it comes to its annoying death traps. On the flipside, Mega Man 10 is still supremely challenging yet its level of difficulty feels more fine-tuned. Also, although I prefer Mega Man 9's selection of boss weapons, I enjoy Mega Man 10's soundtrack more and its collection of challenges is exceptionally satisfying to master. As a result, Mega Man 10 wins by a very slight margin.

That's just my opinion. Agree? Disagree? Vote now!

Gameplay video playlist for Mega Man 9 vs. Mega Man 10 6:14
Mega Man 8 Trivia

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