Mega Man Legends Untold

Sony’s Greatest Hits line is straightforward and mostly beneficial: publishers shamelessly reissue their games, and any interested holdouts or impulse buyers get to nab previously full-priced titles for about twenty bucks. These Greatest Hits revivals show slightly new packaging, however. Original PlayStation re-releases have a neon green border, while PlayStation 2 and 3 titles bear red standards. This doesn’t sit right with some collectors, who resent those colors glaring at them from a shelf otherwise filledwith traditional Sony-brand black labels.

I suppose that’s important, but I’d like to tell you about one Greatest Hits game superior to its original release.

That game is Mega Man Legends, the first in a series that reimagines Mega Man as a 3-D action game in a world of floating isles and mechanized treasure hunting. It’s a wonderful line carried by capable designs and adventurous charms (for which Capcom looked more to Yatterman than Astro Boy), and I recommend all three titles.

I’d like to say that Capcom will put them on the PlayStation Network in North America just as they’ve done in Japan, but that’s unlikely. The most prevalent rumor is that Capcom doesn’t want to re-license the English voice acting. Using those performances might be controversial, anyway, since Teisel Bonne’s voice actor was convicted of child porn possession in 2008. Recording new voices or otherwise editing the game would be expensive and contrary to Sony’s PSN standards. And Mega Man Legends never was a huge seller in the first place.

If you want the Legends games legitimately and in English, it’s the second-hand market for you right now. Mega Man Legends 2 and The Misadventures of Tron Bonne already climb to exorbitant prices, but the original Legends is more common and thus costs less than it did brand-new back in 1998 (and by the recently ballooning standards of retrogame collecting, that’s a bargain). If you go for it, don’t be ashamed of getting the Greatest Hits version and its day-glo cover. Here's why.

This is what you’ll find if you open the original black-label version of Mega Man Legends. The manual’s back cover promotes Breath of Fire III. Lacking the impressive artwork that accompanies even mediocre Breath of Fire games, the ad isn’t all that interesting. By the way, I stole the photo from this auction, so let’s be nice and visit it for the next few days.

And what about the Greatest Hits edition? It may be the color of a radioactive party favor, but within lies a nice surprise.

Yes, the back of the manual shows Data, Mega Man’s loyal Save Monkey! Fans of the series seem to adore the Lego-esque Servbots, but Data is every bit as cute. He saves your game, provides upgrades, and even does a little dance if you stand there and watch him. He’s much better than some pitch for a middle-ground Capcom RPG.

You’ll note that the Greatest Hits disc itself is a stodgier black instead of the original release's authentic Mega Man blue. Yet that's a cavil easily pushed aside. The Greatest Hits version of Mega Man Legends has a precious little monkey-robot welcoming you every time the case pops open, and so it emerges as the better choice.

Even so, those persnickety collectors may have a point about the Greatest Hits label. It looks a little strange in my game library.


  1. Anonymous8:49 AM

    How is it you're able to make entertaining writings about something so random and trivial?

    BTW, it's not occurred to me before, but how big IS your game collection? Do you happen to be a massive horder, or are you quite minimalist?


  2. I think I'm pretty minimalist by the standards of game collectors. At my hoarding peak (some eight years ago) I had over 500 games. Now I have about 150.

    That's pretty far from those people who have every last Hudson Soft title or an entire room full of Mario merchandise, but it's still enough to mark me as a big ol' geek in the eyes of non-gamers.

  3. Anonymous8:57 AM

    Well, I don't think I even own 50 games physically anymore. Well, I have a dreamcast collection back home in England (which will be sold off when I return there), but here in Japan, yeah, I've next to nothing.

    The consoles I own take up over double the amount of space all my games take.

    Also, with my PS Vita and any future console, I think I'm going digital all the way.

    Personally, I prefer the minimalist collectiions. I like to see what games people actually PLAY, as opposed to those buying any old crap for willy size competitions.

    I suspect your collection consists of mostly high quality games.

    On a side note, I bought Valkyria Profile for the PSP after reading your reviews. I've not yet had the time to play it yet, as I'm busy with other games for my videos, but I'll be sure to get round to it sooner or later.


  4. One of my greatest gaming shames was buying new copies MML2 and Tron Bonne about 10-12 years ago when stores were just dying to get rid of their remaining PS1 stock. I played and enjoyed both games, then promptly sold them Funcoland(though they may have all been Gamestops at that point).

    I think I made like 30 bucks combined off the two games. If I still had them now, I could probably pay off my car...

  5. Never knew this. Cool!
    I have put my MML into a Sky Blue DVD box with a custom cover.
    Motly because my there's hardly anything left of the original case, but also because the western covers aren't really the best^^
    Still plan to do the same for MML2 and MOTB someday (with green and pink boxes)
    Though MOTB is the only one which boxart looks great even in the PAL version.