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Top Mega Man boss battles of all time
Mega Man has had to trash a lot of robots on his way to the top. Some of them - Crash Man, Air Man, Metal Man, basically any boss from Mega Man 2 - have been pretty awesome. Some... I'm looking at you, Bright Man... not so much. The battles are fast and furious, and when they're done right you're quite happy to replay a level just to get another stab at that brilliant boss.
Below are ten of the best Mega Man bosses ever created, drawn strictly from the original series. Agree or disagree on which are the top ten, you have to admit, all of them are pretty fun.
Quick Man - Mega Man 2
Though he's probably better remembered for his hellish level, Quick Man himself was no slouch in the boss department. if you got by his stupid laser traps without using the Time Stopper, you could use it to drain half of Quick Man's health - but you were still left with a spastic, unpredictable robot in the aftermath. And try beating him without freezing time! Quick Man was incredible fun because he was so fast, and only the best players could hope to bring him down without extra help. If you could beat Quick Man, you could beat any Mega Man 2 boss.
Mecha Dragon - Mega Man 2
Nostalgia always plays a role in these kinds of top ten lists, and the Mecha Dragon was the bad kind of nostalgia for me. I could never beat the freaking thing when I was a kid. I only once made it to the three platforms at the end, always managing to panic and fall off on the way there. If you keep a level head the Mecha Dragon is actually pretty easy - though the first time it comes along and starts knocking down platforms, boy, you start to freak out.
Yellow Devil Mk-II - Mega Man 3
The Devils are always fun bosses, and though this one is easier to trounce thanks to Mega Man's sliding in the third game, I still think it's the best of the lot. The challenge level is just right, forcing players to concentrate without turning the battle into an absolute rout. (You can probably imagine that I don't much like the original Yellow Devil. Never did get past that stupid thing.)
Pharoah Man - Mega Man 4
Pharoah Man is a great boss ruined by another time-freezing weapon. Use the Flash Stopper and you can catch Pharoah Man in mid-jump, then pummel him until he dies. Lame. Fight him normally, however, and you face a challenge akin to Quick Man: Pharoah Man is fast, his weapon shots hurt quite a bit and he takes a lot of chipping away to go down. Not quite as fun as Quick Man, but still a great boss.
Napalm Man - Mega Man 5
Napalm Man isn't that difficult, but he's probably the best Mega Man 5 can offer in the boss department - and that's not putting him down. As his appearance suggests he's got a fair number of attacks, and he moves around a lot without giving Mega Man much room to breathe. Even using his weakness he doesn't go down so quickly that you're deprived of a fair fight, as well, which is a big problem with a lot of otherwise cool Robot Masters.
Proto Man - Mega Man 7
What's this? Battling Proto Man? Yes, you can do it in Mega Man 3 as well, but this version of brotherly love gone bad is much more satisfying. Proto Man's quite a vicious opponent, dashing around the room with shield extended and blasting at Mega Man with his own version of the Mega Buster. He has no health bar, so you never know how close you are to victory. If ever you wanted to see a satisfying showdown between two rivals, this is it.
Bass - Mega Man 7
Assuming, of course, you don't get this far into Mega Man 7. Proto Man is great, but Bass gives him a run for his money in this second battle. Merging with Treble, Bass goes airborne and swoops mercilessly at the Blue Bomber, guns blazing. This battle was fairly novel for the original Mega Man series in that it was largely vertical, and with your own jet upgrade (which, by the way, was not compulsory) you can take to the sky as well. Ahh, how I yearn for the days when Mega Man and Bass FOUGHT rather than battled together against a common foe...
Dr. Wily - Mega Man 7
ANOTHER Mega Man 7 battle, you say? I shrug. It was an awesome game, and the experience was capped off by this, the mother and father and brother of all Dr. Wily battles. The first part against Wily's lumbering machine is typical, if a bit forgettable -
- but the second half, against Wily's floating capsule, tasked players more heavily than any Mega Man battle before or since. Disappearing and reappearing constantly, Wily launches blazing projectiles at Mega Man that move quickly and are extremely difficult to avoid. The good doctor is often too high for you to reach, and you need to wait for him to come into range for a good hit. This is considered one of the most difficult Mega Man battles ever, and when you manage to edge out Wily for good, you know you've earned your victory.
... I assume. Never managed to beat him. Bah!
Tengu Man - Mega Man 8
Mega Man 8 was plagued by weird voice acting, and Tengu Man was no exception. Fortunately, he made up for his oddball speech patterns with a fantastic boss battle. Tengu's highly mobile, swooping around a platform and blasting at Mega Man with wind. Many of his attacks don't hurt - but they will sweep you off the side of the platform and into oblivion. Not the most difficult boss ever, but a step above most of the other Mega Man 8 battles. (At least there wasn't any sledding in his stage. Grumble.)
Dr. Wily - Mega Man 9
Mega Man 9 had a few questionable Robot Masters, but Wily wasn't messing around when he put his personal vehicle together. This two-parter first pits Mega Man against a floating dinosaur-esque mech that lobs eggs out of its mouth. This wouldn't be that exciting - if it weren't for the fact that you had to knock the eggs back into the thing's mouth. Once you figure that out, you're facing a toned-down version of the final Wily fight from Mega Man 7 which, while easier, is still plenty exciting (and perhaps good practice for the original).