Mega Man 7

Mega Man 7 is live and ready on Nintendo’s Wii U Virtual Console. The game is among the rarer of the old cartridges from the classic franchise after being released so late in the Super Nintendo’s lifespan, and this new digital version is definitely the cheapest and most recommended way to enjoy the overlooked gem.

For as fun as it is, Mega Man 7 is a bit of an odd beast. It was first released well after Mega Man X redefined the standards for what it took to be a good Mega Man game, and yet it stuck faithfully to the classic 8-bit series. Mega Man’s character sprite is also huge, taking up more space on the screen than his 8-bit counterpart, and this bulk makes for a character not nearly as fluid or agile as X.

And yet, for all its shortcomings on the stiff platforming front, it is far and away the most charming and expressive game in the series. You know you are in for a treat after a silly opening cutscene shows just how much character the designers were able to get out of the Super Nintendo’s power.

Mega Man 7

Mega Man himself never looked better, even when compared to Mega Man 8‘s sprite on the PlayStation, and bosses and enemies are just that much more fun to blow up because of their detail. Levels are huge and full of secrets that you’ll be just dying to uncover, and there is even a nice little monetary system which lets Mega Man buy important power-ups, a first for the series.

It’s a game worth checking out for different look at the classic franchise but not as radically dark and gloomy at Mega Man X. It is available on the Wii U Virtual Console for $7.99, and it brings the number of available Mega Man games to at least a dozen. I have to hand it to Capcom, even if it isn’t making new Mega Man games, it’s doing an excellent job at pandering out Blue Bomber’s classics.

We just need Mega Man Legends over on the PlayStation to make it feel more genuine.