I’m not trying to get my hopes up, but a long-dormant part of me is aching to break out, scratching and clawing at the door of my heart, desperate to get free. And a strange bit of news is breaking that is teasing in the perfect way, the kind of way that gets the irrational flames of unfounded hype burning tall and bright. God, as obnoxious a take as it is, I sure do wish an exciting, new Mega Man game could come out. And thanks to that little bit of news, I’m trying so hard not to trick myself into thinking that’s about to happen, but I want it so bad I might just let myself get excited a little bit.
Here’s what the heck I’m talking about: Siliconera, one of the more Japan-friendly outlets on the Internet, received a curious package from Capcom. Inside the package was a birthday card! More accurately, it was an “invitation” to Mega Man’s 30th birthday party. The party, turns out, is a public livestream happening on Capcom’s own Twitch channel on December 4, 2017 at 11am to 12pm PST. It has all the accoutrements, including a dopey hashtag and a cute little drawing of a Mega Man cake. But more importantly, it has a bizarrely ominous line, punctuated with a serious-ass period. “You won’t want to miss it.”
Ok, I’m listening. Capcom has not been this aggressive about Mega Man in years. Years! Everything that has happened has generally just been announced through Capcom Unity blog posts and press releases. Mega Man Legacy Collections 1 and 2, despite being awesome collections full of dope emulation and top-notch museum/gallery features, were still released relatively quietly. Otherwise, Mega Man in the 2010s has generally been Virtual Console ports, a cartoon that has been in development for a billion years and a boatload of random merchandise. Mega Man games kinda stopped selling well generally speaking, but comic books, card games, toys, so on and so forth have kept the character alive in a way games like Mega Man ZX unfortunately couldn’t.
So what’s worth sending out cards and telling people not to miss it? Is something actually happening for the Blue Bomber’s 30 years of action. Because there sure was a big load of nothing for 25. This has to mean something – it has to. Capcom wouldn’t spark flames like this, in a year full of people questioning the company’s actions, without having something interesting and exciting to show off. And I don’t mean a trailer for the dang cartoon (although I would like to see that too, honestly).
There’s a few easy things that could be coming down the road. Mega Man collections on the Switch, maybe a third collection of some sort, perhaps with the X series. Maybe a Battle Network collection? Plenty of nerds would be all over that. But it doesn’t feel like enough, Capcom knows those kinds of releases are niche – the second collection was announced through the usual means and only had a couple arcade-style cabinets available at E3 (they were awesome, though). Dare I say it – could a new, like an actual new, game be ready for an announcement?
I’m probably going to eat my words and fall into endless, Mega Man despair after the stream is over. It’s been that kind of year in a lot of ways. But streams from bigger companies usually mean something, right? We’ve seen tons of Final Fantasy news, Dragon Quest, Nintendo, and so many more big ol’ announcements done through developer or publisher-run livestreams. It’s so hard to believe that Capcom would be like, “yo, check out our Mega Man livestream and don’t miss it” without having more than a new Udon artbook to announce. Don’t play games with my heart like this, Capcom.