Making quiet progress under the radar since the beginning of 2015 has been Megaman‘s spiritual successor, Mighty No. 9. The game has been under silent development for months now, under the watchful eyes of director Keiji Inafune, illustrator and co-creator of the original Megaman, both the games and the character. He’s also got a handful of developers from the Megaman games of the past, making the game as spiritual as a successor can get.
This trailer has been out quite a while now, but it lists a now defunct launch date. September 15th was originally the intended release date, but many have been questioning a handful of retailer websites that list its release within the vague time frame of “2016”. According to Gameinformer, whose parent company is gaming retail giant, Gamestop:
Game Informer has received additional information about the quiet delay of Mighty No. 9, with further substantiation that it will miss its September 15 release. The game does not have a new release date, but the most recent information reaffirms that retailer listings of 2016 are accurate.
And with that, the dreams of Megaman fans worldwide sink just a little more. But this is following one of the most promising kickstarters in recent years. Developer Deep Silver originally began the development process on the kickstarter website after Inafune introduced the concept. It was especially out of the ordinary because it was from Japan, where kickstarters rarely began before this year. In fact, Mighty No. 9 and Shenmue III are prime examples of the major shift occurring presently in the Japanese games industry, but that’s too hefty a digression to stumble toward right now.
Needless to say, the kickstarter was a huge success and development began almost immediately. The game puts players in control of robo-boy Mighty No. 9, who must navigate to and defeat each of his robo-brethren, Mighty No. 1 through 8. Each of the eight has a unique power or ability and once No 9 defeats them, he gains that power or ability and his outfit changes to further resemble the fallen foes. If this sounds familiar, it’s because the game is almost conceptually identical to the Megaman series, where Samus Aran’s blue, young, male, robo-counterpart fought through Dr. Wily’s nefarious robots with names ending in “–man”, gaining their powers and undergoing a pallet-swap each time. It also all happens in a 2D side-scroller setting, but the similarities aren’t as powerful as the differences.
No. 9 is noticeably more capable than Megaman, especially in maneuverability, which is where Mighty No. 9 pulls ahead. Where Megaman can only slide-dash and utilize his robo-dog comrade, No. 9 and his game will introduce more than enough new methods of movement to keep players entertained and experimenting.
The game is intended for release sometime in 2016 for the PlayStation 3/4 and Vita, Xbox One/360, Nintendo 3DS and Wii U, and PC via Steam.