Are you ready for some football? Or soccer, if you prefer.
For many years, Mega Man has been seen by many as Capcom's unofficial mascot. As such, it stands to reason that the company would have him do mascot-y things. After Mario began to kart and Sonic decided to drift in kind, Mega Man would go on to battle & chase. Before Mario ever even thought of having a party, Mega Man hosted a gathering of his own in Wily & Right's Rockboard: That's Paradise.
And in the middle of all of that, Capcom decided to release Mega Man Soccer for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Here, Ryan from Battle Geek Plus reminisces about this oddity from a time when the only Mega Man to appear on the 16-bit platform had an "X" in his name:
(Slightly Not Safe For Work for language)
And if you're interested in seeing more of it in action, ProJared recently picked it up to play as well (also Not Safe For Work due to language):
Yeah, as you can see, their reaction is pretty typical for the game. It has its fans to be sure, but Mega Man Soccer failed to reach the audience that Capcom had hoped for, I'm sure, given that there were apparently plans for a sequel that were quietly kiboshed. The fact that the game felt incomplete -- most notably from its absent ending, among other features -- probably didn't help.
I played this one on a rental or two from Blockbuster Video back in the day, and while I enjoyed the graphics and sound (I remember hoping Capcom would reuse some of the pixel art and assets for something like a Zelda-ish top-down adventure), but the gameplay failed to win me over. Granted, I've never been a big sports gamer, so that might have played into my inability to keep track of my team members and whoever I was in control of while the opponents were freewheeling with the ball.
Plus, like Ryan, my lack of access to a Game Boy meant I didn't know who Enker was prior to this, either.
Even though Mega Man Soccer didn't grow on me (and might have been a waste of time, since hopes of seeing an ending would have been the main reason I'd want to beat it), I don't dislike the idea. Years later, I'd play and love Super Mario Strikers for the GameCube and its Wii sequel, and have always kind of wished that Capcom would revive the concept with Next Level Games in charge of development.
Further, I've always wondered what other sports Mega Man could be plugged into. Of course, Japan doesn't have to wonder, with Rockman Tennis and Rockman DASH Golf, both available exclusively on mobile -- two games I'd happily play, if given the opportunity, I might add.
While I realize it stretches the meaning of the word "sport," I've always wanted to see a "Mega Man Wrestling" game, featuring the Blue Bomber against "super heavyweights" like Guts Man, Stone Man, and Concrete Man, or maybe zippier "cruiserweights" like Quick Man or Tornado Man. In this dream of mine, each character would of course have their own trademark finishing move, which Mega Man could acquire and use for himself on the way to a steel cage match against the Yellow Devil.
Maybe Light, Roll, and Wily could act as managers, too.
Anyway, those are Ryan's memories, Jared's gameplay, and my thoughts on Mega Man Soccer. Feel free to share your own about the game, or what sort of Mega Man sport you'd like to see (assuming that we were to ever get back to the point where the franchise is pumping out new titles to a healthy degree again, of course) in the comments below!