Mega Man

Who else loves Mega Man? Well, pretty much everybody, I assume. (Okay, I will hesitantly admit that this isn’t true, but come on, who could possibly hate the Blue Bomber?)

So, I’ve loved the Mega Man series since I first got to try it out at a friend’s house way back when I was in elementary school. I also think the Nintendo Switch is an amazing console — I honestly think I will be playing the Switch 20 years from now, the same way people are still playing the N64 today.

So I decided to take inventory of the currently available Mega Man games on Nintendo Switch. Unfortunately, we still haven’t seen Mega Man Legends (I would love to see Capcom do a collected edition for Switch), but there’s plenty of great Mega Man content on Nintendo’s hybrid console.

Oh, and if you want to see a robust history of Mega Man box art, I did one a while back over at our sister site Retrovolve.

Mega Man Legacy Collection

Mega Man Legacy Collection

If you want to go all the way back to the Blue Bomber’s 8-bit origins, Mega Man Legacy Collection contains all six NES Mega Man games. The standout here is Mega Man 3, which I would argue is where the series really finds its footing. Of course, I acknowledge that Mega Man 2 is beloved by a lot of folks as well. Personally, I’ve always been a sucker for Mega Man 6, which I think is 8-bit Mega Man perfection, but I know that this is largely based on nostalgia and it isn’t a very popular opinion.

Mega Man Legacy Collection includes:

  • Mega Man (1987)
  • Mega Man 2 (1988)
  • Mega Man 3 (1990)
  • Mega Man 4 (1991)
  • Mega Man 5 (1992)
  • Mega Man 6 (1993)

You can actually get a physical copy of Mega Man Legacy Collection 1 + 2 for Switch, but keep in mind the first collection is actually on the disc, while the second is merely a download code (why does Capcom do this?) It’s also on the Nintendo Switch eShop.

Mega Man Legacy Collection 2

Mega Man 10

Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 brings us into Mega Man’s identity crisis, which makes this a really inconsistent package. Mega Man 7 originally released on SNES in 1995, and Mega Man 8 originally released on PSOne in 1996. You can very clearly see that, at this point in history, the Mega Man X series was winning out in the popularity wars against the original series. Mega Man 7 and 8 head in a more X-ish direction, with the anime-style art design and a stronger commitment to story.

And then something weird happens. Capcom decided to return the franchise back to its roots with Mega Man 9, which went back to the classic 8-bit NES style. Keep in mind this game came out in 2008 (for the PS3, Xbox 360, and Nintendo Wii), so that was actually a big deal at the time. And it was awesome — Mega Man 9 is the standout game in this particular collection (though I admittedly have a nostalgic fondness of Mega Man 8).

Capcom tried to get lightning to strike a second time with Mega Man 10, but that one wasn’t nearly as well-received as the previous game in the series.

Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 includes:

  • Mega Man 7 (1995)
  • Mega Man 8 (1996)
  • Mega Man 9 (2008)
  • Mega Man 10 (2010)

You actually can’t get this collection on a cartridge, because even the physical Mega Man Legacy Collection 1 + 2 only includes a download code for the second collection (the older collection is actually on the cartridge). Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 is available on the Nintendo Switch eShop, though.

Mega Man 11

Mega Man 11

If you want to play the mainline Mega Man series from start to finish, there’s one more title you’ll need, 2018’s Mega Man 11. Note that this game came out several years after Keiji Inafune left Capcom, so it was Capcom trying to recapture that Mega Man magic without the “father of Mega Man” onboard.

I can’t say how well this turned out, because I’ve only played this one for maybe 30 minutes (I feel dirty playing an Inafune-less Mega Man game made by the moneygrubbers at Capcom). I admit that the artwork is gorgeous, and it did review pretty well.

Obviously, this only includes one game:

  • Mega Man 11 (2018)

You can get a physical copy of Mega Man 11 on Switch, and it’s also available digitally on the Nintendo Switch eShop.

Mega Man X Legacy Collection

Mega Man X Legacy Collection

In 1993, Capcom released Mega Man X, and it changed up the Mega Man formula quite a bit. The leap from 8-bit to 16-bit allowed for much more detailed artwork, and the games started taking on an anime-inspired look. Mega Man X also added the wall jump, which was a game-changer for sure. In fact, this game is possibly largely responsible for its popularity — the wall jump is just awesome.

Like the mainline NES series before it, Capcom was cranking out the Mega Man X titles on a yearly basis. X and X2 released on SNES. X3 originally released on SNES, but it was later ported to the PSOne, and X4 released on PSOne.

Mega Man X Legacy Collection includes:

  • Mega Man X (1993)
  • Mega Man X2 (1994)
  • Mega Man X3 (1995)
  • Mega Man X4 (1997)

You can get a physical version of Mega Man X Legacy Collection, but like the mainline compilation, the disc only contains the first collection, with the second being a download code. you can also get this digitally on the Nintendo Switch eShop.

Mega Man X Legacy Collection 2

Mega Man X Legacy Collection 2

The Mega Man X series is a lot more consistent than the mainline series, so the second Legacy Collection doesn’t quite have the identity crisis that the second mainline collection did. That said, the formula did start wearing a bit thin by the time we reached the PS2 era. Plus, Capcom started experimenting with different art direction at the end of the series, with X7 going for a cel-shaded look and X8 going for a 3D polygon look (gross).

Mega Man X5 and X6 released for the PSOne, while X7 and X8 released for the PS2.

This collection includes:

  • Mega Man X5 (2000)
  • Mega Man X6 (2001)
  • Mega Man X7 (2003)
  • Mega Man X8 (2004)

The second collection also includes the 25-minute animated feature The Day of Σ.

As I mentioned earlier, this is only available digitally, because even the physical version of Mega Man X Legacy Collection 1 + 2 only has the first collection on the cartridge. You can get this collection on the Nintendo Switch eShop.

Mega Man Zero/ZX Legacy Collection

Mega Man Zero/ZX Legacy Collection 2

Zero was introduced way back in Mega Man X, but he became so popular that he eventually got his own spinoff series. The series sort of departed from that classic Mega Man platforming and leaned heavily into its bizarre story and more exploration-focused 2D gameplay. The results were mixed, but Zero’s series is not without its hardcore fans.

This was the handheld side of the Mega Man universe. Zero 1-4 originally released on Game Boy Advance, while ZX and ZX Advent released on the Nintendo DS.

This collection includes:

  • Mega Man Zero (2002)
  • Mega Man Zero 2 (2003)
  • Mega Man Zero 3 (2004)
  • Mega Man Zero 4 (2005)
  • Mega Man ZX (2006)
  • Mega Man ZX Advent (2007)

If you get the physical version of this, it does include all six games on the cartridge. You can also get it digitally on the Nintendo Switch eShop.

Plus, there’s a free collection of remixed tunes that you can also download on Switch, titled Mega Man Zero/ZX Reploid Remixes.

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