Mega Man games aren’t very good these days. Look, it’s just a sad fact of life, like grey hairs, or throwing your back out because you slept funny. Thankfully, indie games are taking the wheel here, and the best of the bunch is the magnificent 30XX. This is actually the second game in the series, with 20XX being the first, but it’s a strict upgrade in every conceivable way.
This game features two playable characters, Ace, a sword-wielding fighter, and Nina, a projectile master. Each character gains different upgrades as they beat bosses, with Ace gaining things like uppercuts and teleports, and Nina being able to change the way her projectiles work, like turning them into mortars, or machine guns.
What’s really fascinating about 30XX though, is that you can either play it as a roguelike or as a more traditional Mega Man game. Being able to choose either permadeath or a more traditional progression takes away a lot of the frustration that people have with roguelikes, and means that people can enjoy the game in different ways.
There’s also a level editor that actually lets you build out not just levels as you want, but full campaigns if you’re feeling really creative. It’s also fully co-operative, and running around with a mate is an absolute joy, because you both end up with different playstyles innately, and you can resurrect each other if one of you falls.
Also, and this can’t be overstated, the music is absolutely sublime. Every single track is an absolute stone-cold banger that’ll stick with you until the day you die. The visual side of things is just as impressive, with the enemy design being wonderful, and the art style of the levels being a joy to behold. 30XX is an absolutely incredible game, so don’t sleep on it.