Mega Man Zero 3
|Mega Man Zero 3|
North American cover art
|Artist(s)||Toru Nakayama (character)|
|Release date(s)||Game Boy Advance
|Genre(s)||Action, platform, RPG, Hack 'n slash, Run 'n gun|
Mega Man Zero 3, known in Japan as Rockman Zero 3 (ロックマンゼロ3, Rokkuman Zero Surī?), is a video game developed by Inti Creates and published by Capcom for the Game Boy Advance (GBA) handheld game console. It is the third video game in the Mega Man Zero series of Mega Man video games.
This game follows almost exactly the same rules as its predecessor, Mega Man Zero 2. Once again, Zero has his Z-Saber, Buster, and Shield Boomerang. However, Zero's rod weapon (originally the Triple Rod in Mega Man Zero and the Chain Rod in Mega Man Zero 2) has been replaced with the Recoil Rod: a pair of tonfa-like weapons that can be aimed in all directions. When charged up, a powerful stabbing attack is performed, which can knock enemies back, or propel Zero into the air if aimed down to the ground, like a makeshift pogo stick.
The Cyber Elf system has been given an overhaul with the introduction of Satellite Cyber Elves. These are different from the standard Cyber Elves, which have been renamed "Fusion Elves", in that they are equipped for a constant benefit, and the use of them will not affect the mission ranking score. However, only two Satellite Elves can be equipped at once.
Cyberspace is a new addition to the game. It is said by one Resistance Member (Hirondelle) that the portal to Cyberspace opened up due to Omega's arrival. Going through the door to Cyberspace leads the player into an area that looks exactly like the one in which they left but with a green tinge to it. Enemy appearances are less frequent and if a transfer of info from a Mega Man Battle Network 4/Mega Man Zero 3 link has been performed, certain virus enemies from the Battle Network Series will appear. All enemies drop health items (instead of other items, such as Secret Disks) in Cyberspace. Entering the Cyberspace causes certain Cyber Elves (both Fusion and Satellite, the ones with the A-mark on the lower left) to auto-activate without dying, even if not grown enough to be normally used, and these Elves do not affect the score. However, going into Cyberspace decreases the mission ranking score, making it more difficult to obtain an S or A Rank, which is needed in order to win EX Skills of the end-of-stage bosses. Zero no longer needs to "level up" in order to create weapon combos as they are already in place.
Throughout the game, enemies may drop Secret Disks, which may contain information about the Mega Man Zero series, enemy information, Cyber Elves, energy capsules, energy crystals or even customization chips.
Most of the disks can be opened by Zero himself, mostly those containing Cyber Elves, but the others are locked and the player will have to take them to Cerveau in order to open them. Once opened, their info will be stored in a Secret Disk library featured within the game.
The Forms system from Mega Man Zero 2 has been replaced with Customization Chips. These can be found in Secret Disks and come in three types—head, body and legs. Only one of each type of chip can be equipped at a time, which gives the player more flexibility in customizing Zero.
These Chips give direct upgrades to Zero's head, body or legs, and can be used to reproduce the effects of the various Forms that Zero could take in Mega Man Zero 2. As with the Forms in this game's predecessor, Zero can take on different colours when different body chips are equipped.
As with other Mega Man Zero games, beating the game will allow playing the completed save file again in a "New Game+". Zero will start with all Fusion Elves used from the previous game still in effect (although he will still be penalized for their use), and will also get to keep any EX Skills and body chips that he earned in the previous game.
Hard Mode can be unlocked after completing the game once. It can be accessed by pressing the L shoulder button before pressing Start while selecting a New Game. In Hard Mode, Cyber Elves cannot be used and Cyberspace cannot be accessed (save for one specific level). Zero's triple-slash and full-charge shot are also disabled, and he cannot earn EX Skills.
Ultimate mode can be unlocked by collecting all of the Secret Disks in one game and beating it. Hold R when starting a New Game to play. In Ultimate Mode, Zero starts with all Fusion Elves with permanent effects (such as the Elves that extend the life meter) already in use and without penalty in mission scores. Zero will also have a few body parts available from the start, including the Ultima Foot chip. Finally, Zero can use full-charge attacks instantly by means of simplistic button combos.
There are also seven mini games that can be selected from on the game's Start Menu. They are all unlocked after certain criteria have been met:
- Zero mini-game - Beat the game once.
- Copy X mini-game - Beat the game on Hard Mode.
- Ciel mini-game - Beat the game with an overall S-rank at the final stage.
- Fefnir mini-game - Beat the game with an average of 100 points at the final stage.
- Leviathan mini-game - Beat the game with an average of 100 points at the final stage.
- Phantom mini-game - Beat the game without attacking with any weapons other than the Buster Shot (you can still use them, just don't hit any enemies with them; e.g. You can still use Recoil Rod for pushing blocks or the jump boost, for example), and with an overall S-Rank.
- Harpuia mini-game - Beat the game without attacking with any weapons other than the Z-Saber (you can still use them, just don't hit any enemies with them; e.g. You can still use Recoil Rod for pushing blocks or the jump boost, for example), and with an overall S-Rank.
At the start of the third game, the following synopsis relates notable events of the previous two games.
The third game starts two months after the events of the second. A recently crashed spaceship emits energy similar to the Dark Elf, and Zero sets out to investigate. Not long into the mission Ciel and a pair of Resistance members are captured by Neo Arcadia as Zero enters the ship. But they are not harmed, nor are they held prisoner, as an incident breaks out involving a giant reploid named Omega that not even Leviathan and Fefnir combined can handle. Zero interrupts the battle and is left to handle things on his own. Soon thereafter Dr. Weil is introduced, as well as a rebuilt Copy X, who has reclaimed leadership of Neo Arcadia, much to the chagrin of Harpuia.
After a missile is launched at a densely populated area to enable Omega to capture the Dark Elf, Zero goes off to fight Copy X and defeats him. But before Copy X can transform again, he is betrayed and killed by a trap placed on his body by Weil.
With Copy X out of the way, Weil assumes command of Neo Arcadia and uses the Dark Elf and Omega to seize control of all Reploids on Earth. After Zero destroys both Baby Elves, he heads to destroy Omega's Dark Elf enhanced form, defeating the Reploid twice. From the remains of Omega's second physical form however, rises a Reploid that looks just like Zero and at that moment, Weil informs Zero he is merely a copy and that Omega inhabits Zero's original body.
After Zero and Omega do battle, Mega Man X appears and confirms to Zero that they fought against and sealed Omega a century ago. Before Weil can force the Dark Elf to rejoin with "Omega", the Guardians appear and further damage him. Eventually Zero makes the decision to finish him off, regardless of him being inside Zero's real body. In the explosion, Zero is knocked out and sees visions of X. He tells Zero that he is out of power and can no longer exist in the human world. He is confident Zero can protect the world from now on and fades away.
Zero's unconscious body is brought back to the Resistance Base by the Dark Elf. With Weil's defeat, the curse placed upon the Dark Elf (now known as Mother Elf) is broken and she flies away. But losing Omega and Mother Elf still did not change the fact that Weil was now the undisputed ruler of Neo Arcadia. The humans living there would soon realize the wrath of Dr. Weil.
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A common comment made by reviews of the game is that Mega Man Zero 3 is similar to its predecessors and has not changed much in terms of gameplay. Reviewers complain often about the difficulty level of this game's predecessors and were quick to praise the game's difficulty level for being more forgiving but still challenging.
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