MegaMan NT Warrior

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MegaMan NT Warrior
Megaman Nt Warrior Logo.png
North American logo of Megaman NT Warrior
ロックマンエグゼ
(Rokkuman Eguze)
Genre Adventure, Science fiction
Manga
Written by Ryo Takamisaki
Published by Shogakukan
English publisher Canada United States United Kingdom Viz Media
Demographic Children
Magazine CoroCoro Comic
Original run 20012006
Volumes 13 (List of volumes)
Anime television series
Directed by Takao Kato
Written by Ken'ichi Araki
Studio Capcom
ShoPro Entertainment
Xebec
Licensed by Canada United States United Kingdom Viz Media
Australia New Zealand Magna Pacific
Network TV Tokyo
English network United States Kids' WB, Toonami Jetstream
Canada Teletoon
United Kingdom Jetix
Original run March 4, 2002March 31, 2003
Episodes 56 (List of episodes)
Anime television series
Axess
Directed by Takao Kato
Written by Ken'ichi Araki
Music by Gordon McGhie
Studio Capcom
ShoPro Entertainment
Xebec
Licensed by Canada United States United Kingdom Viz Media
Australia New Zealand Magna Pacific
Network TV Tokyo
English network United States Kids' WB, Toonami Jetstream
Canada Teletoon
United Kingdom Jetix
Original run October 4, 2003September 25, 2004
Episodes 51 (List of episodes)
Anime television series
Stream
Directed by Takao Kato
Written by Ken'ichi Araki
Studio Xebec
Network TV Tokyo
Original run October 2, 2004September 24, 2005
Episodes 51 (List of episodes)
Anime film
Rockman EXE Hikari to Yami no Program
Directed by Takao Kato
Music by Shuhei Naruse
Studio Xebec
Released March 12, 2005
Runtime 50 minutes
Anime television series
Beast
Directed by Takao Kato
Written by Ken'ichi Araki
Studio Xebec
Network TV Tokyo
Original run October 1, 2005April 1, 2006
Episodes 25 (List of episodes)
Anime television series
Beast+
Directed by Takao Kato
Written by Ken'ichi Araki
Studio Xebec
Network TV Tokyo
Original run April 8, 2006September 30, 2006
Episodes 26 (List of episodes)
Portal icon Anime and Manga portal

MegaMan NT Warrior[note 1], known in Japan as Rockman.EXE (ロックマンエグゼ Rokkuman Eguze?), is an anime and manga series based on Capcom's Mega Man Battle Network video game series, part of the Mega Man franchise. The manga series was written by Ryo Takamisaki and ran in Shogakukan's CoroCoro Comic between 2001 and 2006. The anime series, produced by Xebec, ran for five seasons on TV Tokyo in Japan between March 2002 and September 2006, reaching 209 episodes in total. Viz Media produced English-language versions of the manga and licensed the first two seasons of the anime. Despite the common ground, the stories of the game, anime, and manga versions of the Battle Network series all diverge heavily from each other.

Plot[edit]

The series focuses on Lan Hikari and his NetNavi, MegaMan.EXE as they build their friendship while dealing with threats from various NetCrime organizations. Along with Lan are friends Maylu Sakurai, Dex Ogreon, Yai Ayano, Tory Froid, and their respective Navis: Roll, GutsMan, Glide, IceMan. Although the series originally remains fairly close to the games in terms of storyline, it begins to diverge greatly partway into the series. For example, there is no evidence showing that Lan and MegaMan were twin brothers in the anime, unlike in the games where it is revealed near the end of the first Battle Network game.

Media[edit]

Manga[edit]

The MegaMan NT Warrior manga series was written and illustrated by Ryo Takamisaki and published in the Shogakukan magazine CoroCoro Comic. A total of 13 tankōbon (bound volumes) were published in Japan from July 2001 to November 2006.[2][3] All 13 volumes of the series were licensed in North America by Viz Media and published between May 19, 2004 and February 5, 2008.[4][5]

Anime[edit]

The Rockman EXE anime first aired on TV Tokyo March 4, 2002.[6] It spawned four sequels, Rockman EXE Axess, Rockman EXE Stream, Rockman EXE Beast, and Rockman EXE Beast+. The total number of episodes between all 5 series is 209. There was also a feature film within the Stream storyline. Only the first and second (Axess) series were adapted into English.

The English adaptation, titled MegaMan NT Warrior, was produced by Viz Media and recorded by Ocean Productions. The series originally aired on Kids' WB in the United States and TELETOON in Canada.[7][8] Axess aired on TV Tokyo in October 2003, while the English adaptation (titled MegaMan NT Warrior: Axess) aired in January 2005 in the United States and April 2005 in Canada.[9] Stream aired on TV Tokyo on October 2, 2004, Beast on October 1, 2005, and Beast+ on April 8, 2006. Kids' WB dropped MegaMan NT Warrior off the TV block at one point and revived only to complete the final episodes from Axess before dropping it again. Beast was briefly aired in its English adaption on Teletoon before being pulled before the season could complete.

The anime is for young children in Japan but like many English adaptations of other anime series, MegaMan NT Warrior is edited due to Americanization and censorship. Among the more notable edits made was the editing out of words such as "fire," "bomb," and "napalm," which were thought to be inappropriate for younger viewers (especially post-9/11). As a result, the names of FireMan, ColorMan, BombMan, and NapalmMan also changed (while the original names were retained in the English games). Other inconsistencies between the English game and anime resulted from similarities in name to American superheroes. For example, AquaMan's name was changed to SpoutMan in the English anime to avoid confusion with the DC Comics superhero of the same name. In addition, swords are blurred, and scenes of MegaMan pointing his buster at the screen are removed in earlier seasons. Also, scenes showing a character getting hit in the groin were cut. Curiously, subsequent airings of certain episodes reveal that some of the original edits were changed back—most notably, the FireTower Battle Chip originally edited as "FlameTower" subsequently reverted to "FireTower". As with WB's other dubbed series (such as Pokémon and Cardcaptors), some episodes were aired out of order, edited together, or skipped entirely. Viewers elsewhere saw the series in its entirety in the correct order. The first series (EXE) has been released on DVD and a few earlier volumes on VHS, but in an edited format only. An alternate English-language version aired in Singapore, following the Japanese version more closely.

EXE[edit]

EXE is roughly split into two separate storylines. The first concerns the original WWW (World Three) and Mr. Wily's (Dr. Wily) plan on finding the Ultimate NetNavi, culminating in the N1 Grand Prix, a NetBattling tournament. At its conclusion, the Ultimate NetNavi PharaohMan awakens from his slumber and proceeds to claim the net as his own, deleting MegaMan in the process. PharaohMan would eventually be weakened by the two tournament finalists, ProtoMan and a newly-rebuilt MegaMan, leading to his capture by Wily. The second half of the season has the characters take on Grave (Gospel), a NetMafia syndicate spearheaded by Wily that seeks to create a virus beast with the capability to destroy the net. The last several episodes of EXE would serve as a lead-in to Axess.

Axess[edit]

Lan's father, Yuichiro Hikari, curiously absent for most of EXE, completes his research on the Synchro Chip, a device that enables Operators and NetNavis to become one through the use of Cross Fusion. This development coincides with a plot by Nebula (led by the notorious Dr. Regal) and the Darkloids (headed by ShadeMan and later Laserman) to take over both the human and cyberworlds. It is at this point that events involving Navis become secondary to the action that takes place in the real world (rather than the cyberworld), which has led critics to label it a generic Henshin series. The storyline in Axess is considerably darker, and many EXE regulars make only sporadic appearances.

At the beginning of Axess, Lan manages to use the then-untested Synchro Chip to Cross Fuse with MegaMan and defeat the Darkloids that materialize in the real world with the aid of Dimensional Area Generators. Because of this, Lan is invited to become a NetSaver (Net Savior), an Official NetBattler charged with protecting the net. As a result of Cross Fusion, MegaMan loses his Style Change option, but instead gains the ability to use Double Soul (Soul Unison) with which allows him to combine his powers with other NetNavis, harkening back to the original Megaman's Power Copy ability. Cross fusion also multiplies Megaman's power level (For example, the megabuster does much more damage in cross fusion), while making Lan lose his energy. Much of the series is devoted in dealing with the problem of the addictive Dark Chips and the criminal syndicate, Nebula who is controlled by Dr. Regal.

Stream[edit]

Stream continues the storyline set by Axess by introducing Duo, a being from outer space who seeks to destroy humanity after witnessing the chaos caused by Dr. Regal. Intrigued by Cross Fusion, he decides to spare mankind temporarily, bestowing a test upon the main characters to assess whether or not humans truly merit survival. He sends his subordinate, Slur, to Earth, where she hands Navis possessing the powers of Duo's asteroid to unsuspecting people to observe what they will do with such might. Lan (Netto) and the other net saviors must work together to foil Duo and his subordinate. In the process, Neo WWW is formed by Tesla Gauss (Tesla Magnets) to cause havoc. Dr. Regal also returns during the movie, and again towards the end of Stream, with the focus of Stream shifting to time travel.

Beast[edit]

Beast introduces the warring Cybeasts Gregar and Falzar, as well as the Navi Trill. Pitted against the newly emerged Zoanoroid armies of the Cybeasts, Lan, MegaMan, and a select group of their partners, find themselves drawn into the parallel world of Beyondard. Guided by a mysterious girl, Iris, they join the human resistance in the fight to claim the "Synchronizer" powers of Trill, with which MegaMan is able to "Beast Out". Nearing the end of Beast, the android brain belonging to Wily of Beyondard reveals himself along with his lackeys, Blackbeard and Yuika, hoping to acquire the victor Cybeast as his new body. Ultimately, the two merge into the Super Cybeast Gregar, which becomes Wily's vessel with assistance from Trill's powers. MegaMan and Trill merge and lend their strength to Lan to form a "Juuka Style," giving him the strength to destroy it.

Beast+[edit]

Beast+ continues from where Beast left off, though it is marketed as a stand-alone series. Episodes are reduced to approximately ten minutes, airing in the thirty-minute time-slot Oha Coliseum alongside the Saru Getchu anime. Beast+ consists of a string of arcs beginning with the appearance of the Professor and Zero (both from Mega Man Network Transmission). An ex-WWW member, the Professor recovers the remains of Gregar, intent on reviving it for his own purposes. Following its deletion and Zero's decision to break ties with his master, the second arc takes place. Stranded in the world that they perceive to be opposite of their own, Blackbeard and Yuika band together with Darkloid BubbleMan, committing various crimes in a Team Rocket-esque fashion. Shortly thereafter, MegaMan gains the abilities of Cross System. Zero then returns in the subsequent arc, befriending both GutsMan and MegaMan. The vengeful Professor, however, also resurfaces, unleashing a new subordinate known as Zero One. Moved by the kindness that has been shown to him, Zero sacrifices himself to put a stop to the Professor once and for all. The storyline then continues toward its finale with the introduction of Cache, the final boss of the Japan-exclusive mobile game, Rockman EXE Phantom of Network, who threatens to consume the world with the aid of Phantom Navis and cache data. Beast+ concludes the series, ending September 30, 2006.

Film[edit]

The movie, Rockman EXE Hikari to Yami no Program (劇場版ロックマンエグゼ 光と闇の遺産(プログラム)?), was shown alongside the Duel Masters feature film, Duel Masters: Curse of the Deathphoenix, as part of a double-billing March 12, 2005 in Japan.

Music[edit]

Japanese opening themes
  1. "Rockman's Theme ~Pierce Through the Wind~" (ロックマンのテーマ〜風を突き抜けて〜 Rokkuman no Tēma ~Kaze wo Tsukinukete~?) by Jin Hashimoto (EXE)
  2. "Two Futures" (二つの未来 Futatsu no Mirai?) by Michihiro Kuroda (Axess)
  3. "Be Somewhere" by Buzy (Stream)
  4. "Song of Victory" (勝利のうた Shōri no Uta?) by Dandelion (Beast)
Japanese ending themes
  1. "Piece of Peace" by mica (EXE, eps 1-25)
  2. "Begin the Try" (begin the TRY?) by Shōtarō Morikubo (EXE, eps 26-56)
  3. "To Where the Light Is" (光とどく場所 Hikari to Doku Basho?) by Kumiko Higa and Akiko Kimura (Axess)
  4. "Doobee Doowop Communication" (ドゥビドゥワ コミュニケーション Dubiduwa Komyunikēshon?) by Babamania (Stream, eps 1-25)
  5. "To Where the Light Is ~ The Symbol of Friendship (光とどく場所〜友情のしるし Hikari to Doku Basho ~ Yūjo no Shirushi?) by Kumiko Higa and Akiko Kimura (Stream, eps 26-51)
  6. "Footsteps" (あしあと Ashiato?) by Clair (Beast)

Merchandise[edit]

Merchandising for the Rockman.EXE series was heavy in Japan with a variety of toys. Toys ranged from action figures and plush dolls to board games and trading cards. Many toys were originally released by Bandai, including an electronic Plug-In PET replica of the PET used in the original EXE, but Takara took over with merchandising starting with Axess. Electronic PET toys have since been released with every new model used in the show: Advanced PET and Advanced PET II (Axess), Progress PET (Stream), and Link PET and Link PET_EX (Beast and Beast+). Battle Chips for use in the PETs are often packaged with other merchandise, including action figures and even Japanese installments of Battle Network video games.

Most of the merchandise remains Japan-exclusive. However, to help promote the English version of the anime series, Mattel created a line of original MegaMan NT Warrior action figures for the U.S. market. The series were released in two waves with a third wave planned but never released. The action figures featured many prominent characters from the anime with detachable limbs—interchangeable with other figures—so that Battle Chip weaponry could be attached. Mattel also released all twelve DoubleSoul MegaMan figures (featured in Battle Network 4 and Axess) with detachable armor, as well as various miniature figurines (usually depicted in battle) and a few taller figurines, including a talking CrossFusion MegaMan figure.

Furthermore, the Advanced PET toy (featured in Axess) was imported in three available designs: blue/gray (MegaMan), red/black (ProtoMan), and black/purple (Bass). The Advanced PET II model was planned but never released. English Battle Chips were packaged with nearly every piece of MegaMan NT Warrior merchandise, but chips could also be bought separately in booster packs. Japanese and English Battle Chips will work on either Japanese or English versions of the PETs, although only the Progress PET featured backwards compatibility with previous generations of Battle Chips.

Decipher also distributed a trading card game in the United States. However, it was not a translation of the pre-existing trading card games in Japan. The card game has since been discontinued.

In Japan, various soundtracks have been released featuring background music and theme songs used in the show. Also, every episode of the anime has been released across sixty-five DVDs usually containing three episodes per disc. In the United States, thirteen DVDs have been released covering the original 52 episodes of EXE. The first six volumes were also released in VHS form. The English version of Axess has yet to be released on DVD.

Other merchandise includes a life-sized Mega Buster that fires foam darts, an original MegaMan NT Warrior-themed board game, and MegaMan.EXE Halloween costumes.

Reception[edit]

MegaMan NT Warrior achieved popularity among Japanese viewing audiences. According to a viewership sample conducted in the Kantō region by Video Research, the anime drew in an average of 4.5% and a maximum of 5.9% of households during the last year of its original run.[10]

The MegaMan NT Warrior: Program of Light and Dark and Duel Masters: Curse of the Deathphoenix double feature ranked fifth at the Japanese box office for the weekend ending March 20, 2005 with a gross of $1,093,870 USD.[11] The following week it dropped to seventh place with $559,800 USD and a cumulative box office gross of $6,178,840 USD at three weeks of release.[12]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "NT" means "Network Transmission"[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "FAQ." MegaMan NT Warrior Official Website. Retrieved on September 1, 2009
  2. ^ "ロックマンエグゼ (1) (てんとう虫コミックス―てんとう虫コロコロコミックス)" [Rockman EXE (1) (Comics Ladybug - Ladybug CoroCoro Comic)] (in Japanese). Amazon.com. Retrieved 2011-07-29. 
  3. ^ "ロックマンエグゼ (13) (てんとう虫コミックス―てんとう虫コロコロコミックス)" [Rockman EXE (13) (Comics Ladybug - Ladybug CoroCoro Comic)] (in Japanese). Amazon.com. Retrieved 2011-07-29. 
  4. ^ "MegaMan NT Warrior, Vol. 1". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2011-07-29. 
  5. ^ "MegaMan NT Warrior, Vol. 13 (v. 13)". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2011-07-29. 
  6. ^ "This Spring's Anime in Japan". Anime News Network. February 6, 2002. Retrieved 2010-07-04. 
  7. ^ "Viz Releases Megaman NT Warrior". Anime News Network. September 8, 2004. Retrieved 2010-07-04. 
  8. ^ "Kids'WB orders 26 new episodes of MEgaman NT Warrior". Anime News Network. December 15, 2003. Retrieved 2010-07-04. 
  9. ^ "Kids'WB! Powers up for Third Season of Cyber-Adventure "Megaman NT Warrior: AXESS" From ShoPro Ent". Anime News Network. October 4, 2004. Retrieved 2010-07-04. 
  10. ^ Capcom staff (2007). "Annual Report 2006" (PDF). Capcom. Retrieved February 13, 2012. 
  11. ^ Groves, Don (March 28, 2005). "'Robots' leaves tykes cooler than 'Ice'". Variety. Retrieved 2010-07-12. 
  12. ^ Walton, Alice (April 4, 2005). "International box office". Variety. Retrieved 2010-07-12. 

External links[edit]