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Do you remember when Mega Man Battle Network was the biggest thing going on in the world of Mega Man? Do you fondly remember when the Rockman.EXE anime, known as Mega Man NT Warrior in the west, had 4.5 different series, airing year-round, week to week? Well, thanks to Nat400 and his team, you can revisit that time with the long awaited fan dub of Rockman.EXE: The Program of Light and Dark!
Rockman Unity has shared some more of the new artwork added to the R20+5: Rockman and Rockman X Official Complete Works art book, each by a different Rockman manga artist celebrating the Blue Bomber's 25th anniversary. Above, you can see the contribution of Ryo Takamisaki, who you might remember as the creator of the Rockman.EXE manga that was localized here by Viz as MegaMan NT Warrior.
Read on to see Hitoshi Ariga (Mega Man Megamix and Mega Man Gigamix) and Yoshihiro Iwamoto's (Rockman X) respective pieces. Thanks for the tip, Oakie620!
Back in Battle Network's heyday, it was getting all sorts of animes and toys and comics and what have you. Toy manufacturer Mattel was also getting in on the merchandising train. However, after having released two waves of figures, Mattel decided to pull out in the midst of the planned third wave. Today, those prototype figures find their way on auctions from time to time, and generally sell for steep prices.
Recently, hobbyist TiggerCustoms acquired a few of these figures and decided to share them with all, since pictures of the prototypes are pretty rare still. The unfinished figures he acquired include FreezeMan, seen above, as well as ShadeMan and BurnMan, who you can see after the break. Pretty neat stuff; Mattel was sure building up a well rounded selection of characters! It's a shame they didn't follow through.
Now you might be thinking Tigger would love to flaunt these off in his own collection. However, he tells us that he plans to paint them to their completed appearance, and sell them at a future time. If you're interested in nabbing them yourself, you should send TiggerCustoms word!
This news is a little late in coming; honestly, I thought we had already reported it, but nope.* For those interested, fan-favorite Mega Man manga artist Hitoshi Ariga is scheduled to appear at FanExpo Canada, which takes place from August 27th to 29th, courtesy of our friends at UDON Entertainment.
In addition to Mega Man Megamix, Ariga was responsible for the art in the manga adaptation of the anime series The Big O (as seen at right), as well as helping put together the massive R20 artbook, which saw release here as Mega Man Official Complete Works and Mega Man X Official Complete Works.
As of August 12th, Ariga's part in the Expo will be to host a Q&A session at 4pm on Sunday in Room #203D.
In addition to Ariga, the voice of Lan Hikari in the MegaMan NT Warrior anime, Brad Swaile, will also be in attendance. Swaile, who has also voiced Light Yagami in Death Note and Quatre Winner in Mobile Suit Gundam Wing, will be packing a much busier schedule than Ariga, too.
At 5:30pm on Friday, Swaile will be hosting an autograph session in Room DD, and another on Saturday at 2pm in Area BB. Following that, he'll have a "Meet Voice Actor Brad Swaile" event at 3:30pm in Room #104D. And finally, at 4:30pm on Sunday, he'll have yet another autograph session in Signing Area AA.
Of course, there is much more to see at FanExpo. In addition to anime, there is also gaming, comic books, sci-fi, and even horror. You can find out all about it here.
* I think UDON may have been planning to pass along an announcement, hence the wait, but it's already on the FanExpo website. And as Bass likes to say, "he who hesitates is lost," so we've decided to go ahead and run the story.
Recently, I lamented my inability to see the Mega Man Star Force anime, as a result of it being confined to the US-only and now-defunct Toonami Jetstream website, with the DVDs only being available in Europe's Region 2. However, it seems that there may still be hope for people like me, who would love the opportunity to see this and more of NT Warrior, as the following news comes in from Viz Media's appearance at Wondercon:
"Just got back from Wondercon, my last stop was at Viz's booth were they talked adding an assortment of licensed anime to Cartoon Network video such as Naruto, MAR, and suprise...Megaman Nt Warrior/ Star force! An official annoucnement is suppose to be coming soon, they didnt specify a date when the video service would launch." -- 102b, to Protodude's Rockman Corner
Of course, whether or not this only means the episodes that have already aired previously, such as MegaMan NT Warrior, MegaMan NT Warrior Axess, and Mega Man Star Force's first season, or further episodes from Rockman.EXE Stream and Beast, or later seasons of Ryuusei no Rockman will be aired remains unknown.
At the very least, this seems to indicate that Viz has not forgotten the property, and will hopefully capitalize on it with some new DVD releases. Combination subbed/dubbed DVDs might be a bit much to hope for, but who knows? At least hope is alive.