Earth is in such a turmoil due to the Reploid uprisings that humans have decided to colonize space instead. (Like that’s going to solve their problems.) They’ve completed a project called “Jakob” which includes an elevator to the moon (why is it people think that building rail lines into outer space to connect the moon with the earth is a feasible operation?).

Ya think?
Things go awry when Vile shows up and kidnaps Lumine, the Reploid director of the project. Sigma is therefore suspected of being behind the capture of the Jakob project. “Suspected” being the key word, since all next-generation Reploids are now equipped with Axl’s DNA Copy ability, and yes, as X discovers very quickly, some of them even went so far as to copy Sigma...

Stupid Questions

Why does anyone think it’s smart to mass-produce Reploids with copy chips? Forget the Maverick issue; a copy-chip would allow a Reploid to circumvent with ease any sort of security. He could make himself look like an employee and steal stuff from a store. He could mimic a government official and stroll right into top-secret areas. He could turn himself into a manager and clean out a bank. I can’t fathom how mass identity theft could possibly help any society. It’s no wonder the X series world is in such a mess...


At first glance this game is basically a traditional side-scrolling variation of Mega Man X7, without the free-range modes and the lock-on targeting cursor. This I would consider a good thing; but it’s not quite the same, though: the character models are completely different here, the duck is gone, and of course they tweaked a few other things here and there.

The game play is much closer here to the classic 2-D games than was the previous title, but it does bear some features from Mega Man X7. The tag-team is here, though you are still limited to bringing only two of the three characters with you to each stage. But now Axl plays like Bass in Mega Man & Bass (except that he hovers instead of double-jumps; Zero’s still the one with the double-jump). Note that Axl gets completely different weapons than X this time around, and he doesn’t need weapon energy for any of them. (He uses weapon energy only on his transformations.)

They also adjusted the continue system slightly. There aren’t really any “1-Ups” per se, but the “retry” system behaves in basically the same way. The main difference here is that, whenever you die, you can opt to quit the stage and return to the stage select screen (keeping any items you’d happened to pick up along the way before dying). This just means you don’t have to kill yourself off until you lose all your lives just to exit the stage like in previous games. For that matter, you can exit a stage at any time, even if you haven’t completed it, by choosing the “R&D Lab” option off the subscreen.

Game Play Notes

Play Control: 3
The control’s not terrible, but it’s not terrific either. The duck is gone (why?), Zero’s dash is near useless, and characters tend to have butterfingers when it comes to grabbing onto ledges. Hmm, but I guess they’ve always had butterfingers. Okay, forget that.
Graphics: 4
The background graphics are pretty nicely rendered. They do suffer a bit from the overhead problem that plagued several of Capcom’s 2-D games, and sometimes foreground objects can get lost in the background, making them difficult to distinguish from the environment, but otherwise the graphics aren’t bad. I do like how some stages, most notably the Booster Forest, actually rotate around and fold in on themselves in interesting ways.
Animation: 2
Argh, Capcom! Why did you toss the character models from Mega Man X7? I hate to say it, but the new models look rather dippy. The new production artist isn’t quite as good either. The characters animate fairly well—they even gave Zero’s ponytail some extra attention in this regard, even if the end effect needs work—but overall I liked Mega Man X7’s artwork better.
Music: 3
The music is pretty typical. I have no complaints. It’s interesting to note they change the music during a stage in certain cases, such as when you jump into a Ride Armor.
Sound Effects: 4
A lot of the sound effects are from previous X series games. I think the voice actors may be the same as the ones in Command Mission, which rather surprises me, though it’s pretty cool.
Plot: 3
The story is executed nicely and the translation was well done. I also appreciate how they tried to bring in some consistency with the series by featuring Vile, Sigma, and other old faces. All I’m going to say about the plot itself is that copy chips are becoming way too proliferated. At this point you can’t ever be sure that the Reploid you are dealing with is actually the genuine article. It’s getting quite absurd...
Difficulty: 4 (normal to hard)
Somewhat ironically, the “easy” difficulty in this game more closely matches the typical difficulty of previous X series titles...thus making the “normal” difficulty a touch above. But beyond this, this game gives me the impression that the level designers where trying as hard as possible to prevent you from actually enjoying the game. The stage design in a lot of cases is almost beyond ridiculous.
Replay Value: 3
It’s necessary to beat the game multiple times to find everything. Of course, you have to decide if it’s worth going through some of the more irritating stages all over again. On the other hand, the clear-game save does at least give you reason and motivation to play through the game more than once. Also, the stages get a lot less irritating after you’ve played through the game two or three times.
Polish: 3
There are several good features here for stages that let you enjoy them, such as the guard breaks, and the tag-team assist which lets you break out of holds. The Double Attack is kind of fun too, in the same overkill sort of way as the Final Strike from Command Mission. Also, some of the levels do have some clever features. I just didn’t like many of the stage designs.
Overall: 80%
Like most of the recent X series games, this one requires a lot of getting used to before you begin to enjoy it. The game has a number of nifty new features that are a lot of fun, but the problem is, there are very few stages that actually let you enjoy them. Two of the levels are jet-bike levels, and two are on auto-scroll. Two more have ridiculous corridors of spikes, and one stage is a bunch of mini-games. That’s an awful lot of the game to write off before you can even think about starting to have fun. So this game is a collection of good things and bad things, and I guess you just have to decide which outweighs the other.

+ Plus:
There are no rescuable Reploids to worry about this time around. Whee!
- Minus:
Can’t decide on this one. No duck. Ugly character models. Infuriating level design. Pick one.
This is not the most optimal order, since you have to revisit many stages to gather the items. Like most Mega Man games, you just have to find a place to jump in and start, and I found Trilobyte’s stage and boss battle to be relatively easy to defeat without weapons. Still, feel free to hop into the circle in another place instead. Remember, if you have troubles with the game, enter stages to gather items, then quit out if you can’t make it all the way through. Your rank will suffer, but you will come out on top in the end.

The hatches are color-coded here. I swiped the screen shot off the stage select screen because it was easier than piecing together my own. It’s blurry, but use the colors below to match up the gates.

  • Black: Dark Mantis
  • Red: Burn Rooster
  • Orange: Earthrock Trilobyte
  • Purple: Gravity Antonion
  • White: Avalanche Yeti
  • Cyan: Gigabolt Man-o-War
  • Yellow: Optic Sunflower
  • Green: Bamboo Pandamonium

Intro Stage Boss:

Call me crazy, but based on its huge pincher arms, I could have guessed that.
You meet this thing three times, and slightly different strategies apply to each encounter. The easiest way to toast it the first time is to use Axl, jump, and at the peak of your jump, hold down the fire button. Axl will hover right over the crab’s shots and the pincher that grabs you. The only trick here is the timing (since Axl can only stay in the air for a limited time, so you don’t want to drop to the ground at the wrong moment). For the second encounter, just jump up next to its head and double-attack it. The third time, at the end of the stage, use Zero to triple-slash it (stand on the ground, right in front of it—it doesn’t look as though his saber should reach, but it does) and the crab will pause and drop downward momentarily. Jump up and whack its head while it’s vulnerable, then as the crab straightens up, wait until it is fully upright and then triple-slash it again before it can start moving. Keep doing this over and over until the crab’s health is low, then double-attack it to finish it off. Note that if you want or need to use the Double Attack multiple times, you can gather crystals that the crab drops to recharge your AT meter. The easiest way to get it to drop crystals is to hit the pipes on its back from behind.

Why do I get a little bit of déjà vu here?
You can encounter Vile in any number of different stages, plus you meet him again in the fortress. Vile floats in the air shooting semi-homing shots. Sometimes he will swoop across to the other side of the room and repeat. Some of his shots split into multiple smaller shots, and later on Vile will start tossing a flame on the ground. His ultimate attack involves him hovering invulnerable in the center of the screen with spokes of electricity moving around him, and you have to move through the spokes when they blink out momentarily. The ice weapon will freeze him, so use it at every opportunity. The final time that you encounter Vile, he will enter the battle with a Ride Armor. Use a guard-break attack to knock him off the armor, then fight him like normal (his pattern is the same as before once he’s off the armor).
Sigma 1st time:
He dashes across the room, and also hovers and charges up. While charging, he’s got a shield around him, so you have to use a guard-break attack on him. Doing this will interrupt his charge. (If he finishes charging, he fires a large pinkish super-shot.) When he dashes, he’ll swing with a beam saber at the end of the dash. After the halfway point, Sigma fires several small missiles which slowly move about, bouncing off walls and things. He also does a dash uppercut type attack. Finally, when he’s low on health he’ll light the floor on fire. I haven’t pinpointed his weakness yet, but the shadow weapon seems to do decent damage on him.
Sigma 2nd time:
His pattern tends to be such: he fires some circle-beams, then disappears. He’ll reappear above your head and do a down-slash with his sword (dash out of the way, and hit him after he lands if you can, but stay far away from his sword). He will do the sword attack once or twice (if he disappears quickly the first time, he’s doing it again), then return to a corner of the room and fire more circle beams. After the halfway point, he will light one wall on fire, leaving only one wall you can climb to avoid his shots...but if you try to climb the one over his head, he will jump up to knock you off. At this point you need to jump and dash to dodge his beams. Sometimes he goes crazy and starts slashing downward repeatedly, over and over. Dash back and forth to dodge this. His ultimate attack seems to be where he disappears, sucks up your character, and then grabs him. You can tag-team this one away. Remember to aim for Sigma’s head.
Lumine 1st time:
(I’m just going to call him a “he” because the game does, even though he looks and sounds like a “she”...) He’s surrounded by the eight colors of the teleporting hatches earlier. He floats around the room and uses the ultimate attacks of the various Mavericks. I’m not sure whether or not his weaknesses change based on who he is emulating. If you’ve fought the Mavericks a lot you should be able to cope with this guy’s attack patterns.
Lumine 2nd time:
You have to hit the little Lumine inside the frame. One attack he does is interesting, it’s multiple rings which move outward and then inward, and the rings have breaks in them that you have to dodge through. He also has lasers which are fired at your feet, and some other laser missiles which fly into the air then come down where you are standing. He also sends down yellow shard-like shots which fall in groups with gaps where you can dodge. And he likes to swoop off the screen to the left (jump and air-dash over him). He seems to favor the right side of the screen. Lumine’s ultimate involves him firing off a horizontal line of those yellow shard-like shots, and then they arrange themselves into multiple horizontal rows with gaps and move back and forth.
Lumine 3rd time:
Not really a separate battle, but strangely, after you get Lumine down to about 1/4 health, his attack style completely changes. New stage, new music, everything. He remains curled up in his wings most of the time and you have to guard-break him. You can Double Attack him as long as his wings aren’t curled.

Note: Your characters’ health is not refilled between any of the final battles. Also, if you die you have to go through the plot again (where applicable), but this means you can switch out to another character and see that character’s version of the dialogue. Or just skip it with Start.

X’s Enhancements

You get the Neutral Armor with the first capsule you find. After that, you add parts to it in a mix-and-match fashion. If you wear all of the red or blue parts together, the suit is named. All red is the Icarus suit (gives you the Giga Crash attack), and all blue is the Hermes suit (gives you the X-Drive).

Rare Metals

Note: If you are playing on Easy mode, none of these will appear. (On Easy mode you can build most of these items right from the start anyway.)

Intro Stage:
  • Weapon Bottle - On a ledge hidden high behind a waterfall just after the place where, on your first pass through, Alia told Axl to hover across a gap. (You’ll need to revisit the stage for this since Axl can’t jump high enough.)
  • Shock Absorber - Right in the place where you picked up Zero during the first run through this stage, break the rocks overhead using X’s red helmet.
Metal Valley Stage:
  • Life Bottle - Near the beginning, while being followed by the giant robot, you will come across a skeleton. Climb on top of the bones and you will see the rare metal hanging in the air. Don’t get knocked off by the robot.
  • Double Barrier - While the giant robot is following you, activate the crane that you come to in the middle of the stage before the robot jumps and lands on the switch. Then, go to the far right of the stage and hammer the mini-boss robot like normal. Once the robot starts to run away to the left, leap onto the metal girders being held in the air by the cranes. You have to have turned the one earlier in order to make the jump. You must jump and air-dash (to the left) across several such girders to find the rare metal.
  • Chip Discount - After the giant robot begins moving left again, you will soon come across an indentation in the ground that was covered up before. Place a fully-charged Crystal Wall there, and instead of a normal energy capsule, it will have the rare metal embedded inside it. (Thanks to the person who pointed me in the right direction with this without totally spoiling it for me.)
Troia Base Stage:
  • Weapon Converter - In the hallway before the second-to-last training room, there is a big pit, and you normally have to climb the left wall, then air-dash over to a ledge to continue on. Instead, air-dash just underneath that ledge to find another ledge under it.
  • Metal Generator - Get a perfect rank through all of the training sessions. (I’m pretty sure it has to be all of them.) This means get the top row all the way across. When you complete all of the training rooms and then go through the next section, you will be given the rare metal as a reward. (The way that I find that is easiest to do this is to use the Σ Blade as Zero. But do whatever works for you.)
  • Life Tank - I’m getting conflicting results trying to test this one. It could be getting 5-6 top-row rankings in the training sessions (but if you get them all, you get the Metal Generator instead). Or it could be a time limit, although I’m fairly sure my testing has eliminated that possibility. Anyway, either way, it’s definitely in this stage.
Primrose Stage:
  • B Fan - After the section with X’s capsule, you will come to a couple of rooms with lots of spikes and moving platforms. The metal is found in a corner surrounded with spikes. Use Axl’s transformation to get there.
  • K Knuckle - In one of the large step-like sections which doesn’t rotate, there is a block high on the left wall. Use a dash-jump off the wall (or Zero’s double-jump) to get onto the block. Use a charged Crystal Wall on top of the block.
Inferno Stage:
  • Weapon Tank - In the second vertical auto-scrolling tunnel, before it starts to auto-scroll, jump up the ledges that fall after you land on them, and air-dash right. You can make it without Axl’s transformation, but if you want, fly over there with Axl. There’s a hallway in the right wall.
  • T Breaker - Yep, you go through that pipe in the wall right near the top of the vertical section of spikes, near the two bats. You have to use Axl’s flying transformation though—with an air dash, you just bonk against the pipe like it’s a wall, then fall and hit the spikes just below. Anyway this involves getting the flying transformation from the robot down below, then either surviving the trip back up, or dying on the spikes and then restarting up above and skipping all that mess.
  • Double Barrier - This is really easy once you have the right weapon. Note that Pallette lies here—she says a good “kick” will work, but it isn’t a kick that you need at all. Go to the place where Pallette gives her message (it’s in the vertical spike portion of the stage, near the bottom), then use the Dairettsui (which you only get with the T Breaker).
Central White Stage:
  • Shock Absorber - From the place where the X capsule is, air-dash or hover across to the left and land on the arch over there. The metal is on top.
Booster Forest Stage:
  • Weapon Converter - Need Axl. Early in the stage, grab the DNA data from one of the robots that can turn into a little ball and roll. Then, when you go past the tree where the capsule is and to the right and drop down, you should see a ledge that you can roll under.
  • Double Barrier - Get the Ride Armor to the second section of the stage, where you need it to break the blocks to get to an upper passage. After going across some spikes and such, jump out of the Ride Armor and move to the right on foot and shoot the blue button hidden on a wall there to lower the elevator. Then go back and get in the Ride Armor again and put the armor on the elevator. Jump out, shoot the button again to move the elevator back up. Use the Ride Armor to break the blocks in the way up there. Now, use a charged Crystal Wall on the circular plate you see behind the blocks.
  • Shield Armor - This is the fun one. You need the Ride Armor and you need to get it to the very last section of the stage.

    When you reach the pit there, jump out of the armor momentarily and shoot the exploding robot from the pit, then get back in the Ride Armor and jump on the first platform. When it gets even with the second platform, jump on it, then jump toward the right again immediately (don’t let the second platform get too low) and air-dash to the right. You are aiming to get on top of the ledge that goes over the moving spikes, not under it. The Ride Armor can fit, but it’s a tight squeeze. If you mess up, air-dash left again back to the platform and try again. If you need to, jump onto the leftmost platform to raise the right platform back up again. You want them about even when you make your jump. As long as you don’t let either platform get too low you can retry as often as you like until you make the jump correctly. Anyway, once you are on the ledge you are aiming for, destroy the morph-ball robot, then stand in the bottom of the vertical tunnel and jump. Your Ride Armor should break through the floor and drop onto the elevator below. Ride it up.

    (Note: A reader reports that Zero’s Raikousen while equipped with the K Knuckle will break this floor without the need of the Ride Armor. You still need the Ride Armor to activate the elevator, but at least you can skip the step of using the Ride Armor to break the floor, and instead drop it onto the spikes and let them bring it to you. Thanks also to Carin.)

Pitch Black Stage:
  • D Glaive - After the generator, before the door that leads out of that section of the stage, there are two platforms high above the door. You need Zero’s double-jump or X’s red boots to get up there. You might need the lights on for this to show up (see below).
  • Shield Armor - Activate the generator (see below on how to do this), but instead of dropping down, jump back over to the right and retrace your steps back in the direction that you came in. You will see some ledges up there that you can now jump on. The rare metal is on about the fourth ledge to the right.
  • Life Tank - Use a charged Crystal Wall right in front of the generator (see below), on the marking on the floor.

When you beat the game, you can make a clear-game save which starts at the beginning of the game even though it appears on the load and save screens to be at the end (so don’t save over your end-of-game save if you still want it).

If you were playing on Easy mode, you don’t keep your items or upgrades; the only things that carry over are your records (in the dev room) and the number of metals you had. Still, since you don’t need metals for much in Easy mode, it can be useful to play through Easy first, rack up a huge cache of metals, then begin a Normal or Hard mode clear-save with a head-start in metals. You also will take with you all that practice too...

On the other hand, when you beat the game on Normal difficulty or higher and save the clear-game data from that, you do keep all of your items and power-ups, except for your Master Weapons. You might also unlock a few things; these are detailed elsewhere on this page.

General Hints

Stage Hints

Miscellaneous Secrets


It seems (although I’m not sure what exactly triggers it—you’ll know when you have, though, because the Capcom logo changes) if you beat the game on Normal difficulty or higher and then restart using the resulting clear-game save, you are able to build items which let you play as the three navigators. The first one is available immediately; it appears that the navigator you used most often ends up getting chosen here. You can get the others at any time after you get the first by choosing them as your navigator multiple times in a row; you can do this on stages that you’ve already cleared and you don’t have to beat the game again before they are available. Just check your Chip Dev room frequently. Alia is basically a pink version of X without the armor. Layer plays like Zero, which leaves Pallette to mimic Axl (except without the Copy Shot).

At any rate, this is one of those things they threw into the game that you would never believe if you didn’t see it for yourself. Aside from just having fun, there is no real reason that I can see so far to play as the navigators since they don’t get all of the abilities as the main characters, and if you choose one of the three gals as a player character, you can’t select a navigator for that stage at all, even one that isn’t currently on the field. (Not that you should need it after beating the game that many times...) I thought maybe if you selected a navigator as a player character, she’d speak up during stages like normal (I mean, she’s there), but that doesn’t seem to be the case. Also, you get absolutely no plot scenes when you are using a navigator in your team, even if you have her on the bench when you trigger the scene. Note: To select a navigator as your player character, press the “Change Char” button (Triangle by default) while on the character selection screen. Likewise, to build parts for your navigator characters, press the same button while on the Chip Dev screen. You can build all of the same parts for the navigators as for their respective main characters, although your navigators never get suits of armor.


If you are playing a clear-game save and you have a character who is at 100% (has all of his items built in the dev room), you will unlock the ultimate armor for that character. Thanks to Sean for helping to verifying this.


I have verified the following codes, but wasn’t able to get the others to work. To input these, wait for the title screen (where it flashes “Press Start”) then put in the codes mentioned; if done correctly, you’ll get an associated sound effect. Then press Start and select either a new game or continue (the code will be in effect for whichever game you load). These codes are saved as part of your save file if they are in effect when you save.

Easy Mode:

There is no real ending when you beat the game on the Easy difficulty. After the credits, you see a very brief cinema scene where X, Zero, and Axl are gazing at the ruins of Sigma’s body. As they stand there, Lumine walks up, looking quite insane. That’s it for Easy mode.

Normal and Hard Modes:

Lumine denies being Maverick and claims that the copy chips that the new Reploids have were derived from data from hundreds of old model Reploids...meaning Sigma was also included in the mix. Lumine also claims that Axl can’t go Maverick because he is only a prototype. Besides, he points out, was Sigma really crazy? He rebelled against the world but he had his reasons, or so Lumine thinks. Lumine adds that the new generation Reploids can go Maverick at will. Uh, that’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard. That’s like saying someone can go insane at will. Right...

Upon his death, Lumine declares that he may be defeated, but it’s too late to stop what has already begun. Then he goes still and starts to crack. Axl approaches Lumine, and some tentacles shoot from Lumine and hit Axl. Zero severs the tentacles with his saber while X catches Axl, then blasts Lumine. (But I suspect Lumine just transferred himself to Axl...)

X and Zero return to the orbital elevator with X still carrying a comatose Axl. Zero tells X to ignore what Lumine said. He says that even if this is the way all Reploids will eventually become, they will fight it every step of the way. They will fight their own destiny if necessary.

The game ends with a scene showing the cracked gem in Axl’s helmet, which Lumine shattered. (Anyone getting flashbacks to Zero’s gem in Mega Man X4? I know I am...)

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Last update: September 14, 2011