Part 8: Video 6
There are a total of thirteen (13) dead resistance soldiers in this stage! I COUNTED.
Not so lucky anymore I guess!
Also just a disclaimer, this part is super wordy. Like, 2 parts dialogue, 1 part gameplay wordy. Annotations let you skip it if youve seen it already.
100 pt requirements:
-Clear time: 2:20
-Enemies killed: 28
Hard mode changes basically nothing about this place. All the enemies are weak enough to get one-shotted in either mode, and its a fairly short area.
Man, this stage. Its never really made clear exactly WHAT Elpizo & Co thought they were attacking here, although the transerver lists it as residential area later on. You can kinda see what looks like apartment complexes out of some of the windows, but I doubt an ACTUAL residential area would be littered with instadeath spikes.
Interestingly enough, though this area itself doesn't really have all that much relevance, it contains some long-overdue plot, with the objectives of 3 of the last 4 missions coming into play. It's also something of a two-parter, STAY TUNED.
Anyway theres nothing that interesting about the stage layout; other than a few hidden cyber-elves, its a straight trek right. The area follows the standard Neo Arcadia® design aesthetic what with all the purplish glowy bits that look just like the final few areas of the first Zero game, which is a nice touch, and it also has various debris left behind by the resistance assault like the huge, blown out wall at the beginning which Ive always loved. Shows they at least did a LITTLE more than just get their butts whooped by the Guardians. Lots of bullet holes and slashes are also visible dotting the walls if you look out for them, so at least the thing isnt as bland visually as it is in terms of gameplay. All in all though its probably one of the most forgettable stages in Megaman history.
The music in this stage also bears a mention; its a remix of the theme of the last stage of Zero 1, titled Neo Arcadia. They did a pretty good job making NAs look consistent.
The active form is awarded for killing 25 enemies with a ground-based dashing slash in a single stage. This is one of those things you have to SPECIFICALLY work towards, seeing as theres really no stage in the game where youre just handed 25 ground-based enemies without going out of your way to respawn them.
In fact, I was previously unaware it was even possible to get a form in this area, as Id never gotten one previously and it doesnt give you an EX skill. I was able to squeeze the active form out of it though, so thats one theory debunked.
And be glad it is! The active form is actually one of the most interesting this game has to offer.
Now, obviously, the active form is a SPEED DEMON. This thing will tear up stages like nobodys business, although given that all the forms (even the slow power form) can dash their way through all the areas at breakneck speeds its not AS obvious an improvement as it could be. However, its the forms secondary abilities that really make it shine.
The things description reads Do jumping rolling slashes. What this means is that this form gives access to two new moves: The jumping rolling slash, and the Dashing rolling slash.
These moves were, in the previous game, unlockable abilities for the Z-saber itself, but here theyre exclusive to the Active form. They convert your default jumping and dashing slashes into rapid, multi-hit whirlwinds of death, ideal for speedily killing closely-spaced enemies, or in some cases those with a bit more health. You can continue the rolling slash forever by continuously pressing the attack button, and in the case of the jumping rolling slash, you can even cancel the altered move by holding the down button before you execute the slash, though theres really no situation in which this is necessary.
To be honest, the only real downside to these moves is that the dashing slash cant be canceled in the same way. See, it goes just a liiitle further than your normal dashing slash, and doesnt do a *ton* of damage, so if you try to combo from a dash slash into a finisher attack, you can easily just roll right into whatever you were targeting and get yourself a bit of contact damage. Its fun to use, but very much a double-edged sword that shouldnt be abused without thinking.
Beyond functionality though its plain cool looking, reminiscent of old SNES star wars saber-flipping shenanigans, or the Kuuenzan move Zero had back in the X series. The forms a speedrunners dream and just plain fun to use
The Golems come back for more! And are EXCATLY THE SAME AS BEFORE.
Yeah this stage is pretty forgettable in general, not only because its got a bland, gimmickless design, but ALSO because it recycles midbosses into a full boss fight!
And make no mistake, they ARE completely recycled. Their movesets, patterns, and even their ARENAS are *exactly* copied from your previous encounters with them, without any sort of unique variation. In fact, the only difference from the fights Ive already shown off is that they have slightly more health than their midboss versions: each were given a 1-layer boss health bar, meaning they can take a little more punishment. Even still, when utilizing the elemental chips this only amounts to about an extra 6-8 seconds to off each of them.
In case you want to review info on each of them, Ill link the posts containing their bios here.
=GOLEM TYPE-E= =GOLEM TYPE-F= =GOLEM TYPE-I=
Its really quite disappointing as far as bosses go; the last game had a few Mechaniloid bosses with interesting designs that appeared in place of Mutos Reploids on occasion, and this wouldve been a good opportunity to continue the trend, or maybe make a golem boss that combined all their traits. But alas, they reaaaaally went overboard with the golems in this game.
Incidentally they dont give you an EX skill either. BOOOOO.
As mentioned previously, the music in this stage is a remix of the equivalent from Zero 1. Its nice and ominous, but theres nothing especially remarkable about it. I WILL say that the remix sounds significantly better than the original; its deeper and fuller and just all-around more satisfying.
There's also Zero 2's "OH SHIT" music, titled "Uneasy".
Neo Arcadia II/Comparison Neo Ardadia