Mega Man 4

Mega Man IV: Keeping the NES Alive

Review Date: May 18, 2021

Release Date: January 1, 1992

Platform: NES

Publisher: Capcom

Genre: Linear Platformer

Anecdotes: My family had Mega Man 2 and 3 for the NES and we were big fans of both of those games. We enjoyed them so much that my parents went and bought us Mega Man, the original, to complete the trifecta. By time 4 came along, though, we had lost interest. Easily, the biggest problem was that Capcom insisted on continuing Mega Man on the NES while the rest of the industry had moved on to the Super Nintendo. In 1992, we were in the same mode. The Nintendo was now old news. We didn’t care about the system anymore and neither did anyone else. Capcom made a huge mistake staying on the NES; even going to the SNES with the same basic gameplay may have been a smarter move.

As with all Mega Man games 1 to 10, I will be playing the Mega Man Legacy titles on a PS4, but reviewing it as if I were playing the NES version, so things like the rewind feature and the ability to save will not be considered in the grade.

Description: Mega Man comes back for another round, but this time, it’s Dr. Cossack that is causing the problems. Of course, Mega Man gets to his castle, and sure enough, Dr. Wily is behind it all once again. Let’s have a look at the robot masters.

Bright Man: This dim bulb has a stage full of zappers and things that play with the lighting. Think Spark Man’s stage meeting Shadow Man’s stage, then getting Flash Man’s weapon at the end.

This stage gets me all charged up.

Dive Man: Like Toad Man, there’s a lot of water in this stage and Mega Man is going in. As for Dive Man, the boss, good luck. The Skull weapon is the weakness, but it’ll probably run out before Dive Man sinks. Yay.

Hard Hats can snorkel. Amazing.

Drill Man: I did this stage eighth and really just tried to blast through it. Drill Man actually has a solvable pattern and a vulnerability to Dive Man’s weapon.

I hit this place last. Please make it end.

Dust Man: I don’t even remember this stage. I just remember trying to hit Dust Man with the rings.

Hey, look, a friendly robot!

Pharaoh Man: It’s just like walking through the ancient tomb at the Field Museum, except the mummies attack. The stage is a giant pyramid. Pharaoh Man himself is the only boss that didn’t make me want to throw my PlayStation controller through my TV. All I had to do is freeze him when he lands and wail on him while he’s frozen.

Mummies keep losing their heads in here.

Ring Man: Ring Man has a long, annoying stage full of moving platforms, tough minibosses, and other nonsense. The boss battle, amazingly, is also long and annoying. More on that later.

This stage is so tedious, even the minibosses are annoying.

Skull Man: Obviously, his stage is themed after skeletons. Even the backgrounds have them. The red sky for the outdoor part is interesting. Anyway, Skull Man can be taken out with the Dust Buster Crusher, but of course, it still won’t be quick.

Why is there always some bonehead in the way?

Toad Man: Think Bubble Man with rain in the area. I had to beat Toad Man with the Mega Buster, which, like every boss in this game, was a pain.

It’s raining, as if there isn’t enough water in this stage.


  • The castles portion of the game was lengthened a bit and really only throws a few new tricks at the players. They’re all mostly straightforward and not excessively difficult. It’s also nice that the game offers a grinding area before the final boss, even if it’s time consuming.
  • Although a few of the stages are rehashes, I like the themes chosen for each stage. I’d say my favorite was the Pharaoh tomb, with its classic colors and the mummies appearing from hidden walls.


  • These developers, especially in the 90s, needed to realize that hard does not equal good. I had a battle with Ring Man that went on for 30 minutes because I had to heavily abuse the rewind feature of my PS4. Had I been playing on an NES, I would have quit if I had to go through that ridiculous stage again to battle that boss again. Ring Man was a battle of attrition. I kept running into two issues: the Pharaoh Shot would run out, and I was unable to charge it up. There’s no time to charge a weapon when I’m getting bombarded with rings. There’s also little room for error when he jumps over my shots. Then there’s the defensive side, which involves unavoidable rings and trying to get out of his way. It was very frustrating.
  • The minibosses have not only increased in number, but they’ve also increased in difficulty. None of this was necessary.


Here I am getting worked over by a snail that throws its eyes at me.
That robot can light up anyone’s life.
Red sky at night, sailor’s delight.
I think I used the Rush Jet to get through this.
Nice try, Capcom. Don’t think that I won’t notice the similarities to Section Z with this boss.
The “fun” never ends.
I won’t after that Ring Man fight.
Just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse, here are some disappearing blocks.
The first phase of this thing was easy. It must have been in the wrong game.
I’ll add one to my trophy collection. Yes, I know that wasn’t an NES thing.

Final Opinion: Most of the bosses are long, tedious fights, and then the weapons tend to run out. There are also too many minibosses in the way.

Grade: C

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