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Mega Man Battle Network 3 Blue [Game Boy Advance]

4 Ratings: 4.5
The 2003 Game Boy Advance Action Role-Playing video game

Game Boy Advance

Console: Game Boy Advance
Genre: Action RPG
Release Date: June 24, 2003
1 review about Mega Man Battle Network 3 Blue [Game Boy...

Arguably one of the finest experiences to grace the GBA.

  • Feb 21, 2011

Consider this review a comprehensive overview of the previous two games as well. Personally the latter three weren't quite as good, but they still had their moments. Anyway!

To begin with, I'd like to clarify some things about the series. MegaMan Battle Network (MMBN) is a spin-off of the original MegaMan series set in an alternate timeline where Dr. Light, A.K.A. Dr. Hikari, moved into the field of computer technology rather than robotics, and Dr. Wily's robotics technology was ignored in favour of Light's burgeoning internet (of course, this means that, as always, Wily is the bad guy). The plot of each game follows the trials and tribulations of Lan Hikari, grandson of Dr. Hikari, as he struggles to get by in his everyday life while dealing with Wily's plans, his ragtag bunch of friends, and the difficulties of being the BEST EVER in a world where no one acknowledges that he is, in fact, the BEST EVER. On the other side is his NetNavi MegaMan.EXE, a program that he uses to traverse the landscape of the Internet while fighting viruses (represented by all your favourite MegaMan enemies). Over the course of a year of his life, Lan solves a lot of worldwide issues and saves the planet several times, receiving recognition for none of his work. The characters he meets, works with, fights, and loves are all very interesting, many cameos from previous MegaMan games, and the stories, though not perfectly localised, are fun and intense thrill rides from start to finish, slice-of-life pieces that tell of a life most people certainly would not want a slice of.

Enough about the plot, though! That's not what you should be playing MMBN for. This series is about the gameplay, and that is where it truly shines, with a fast, frenetic battle system that defines the perfect mixture of strategy and action role-playing. What you, as the player, do, is build MegaMan by using the Navi Customiser to control his attributes, finding powerups to boost them, and using battle chips to build a folder which allows MegaMan to take action in battle. Battles themselves take place in real-time on two 3x3 grids, side-by-side. On the left hand side MegaMan, alone, stands, able to move between any of the panels freely. On the other side are his enemies, who can, in turn, move freely across their own panel. With the use of special battle chips, you can cross into enemy territory, and with the use of skills, they can cross into yours. Every fifteen seconds you are allowed to choose more battle chips which you can pick according to the rules of the game - when you have no battle chips, your MegaBuster allows you to fight without them, albeit drastically weakened.

The point is, the battle system in MegaMan Battle Network is the closest a video game will get to absolute perfection. With a seamless blend of strategic thinking, preparation, and skill, the player takes on numerous different challenges in wildly varying ways that will always keep you alert and on your toes. The game is not for the faint of heart (if you are faint of heart, I apologise for your unluckiness in missing out), but if you're prepared to put in the effort it takes to master this effortlessly simple and yet subtlely complex system, it will pay out in ways that will make you weep in joy. The game is just that good.

With a wide variety of exploratory options, spanning both the real world and the world of the 'Net, outside of battle the series isn't bad either. Meeting NPCs, finding new things to do, new people to fight, and new worlds to explore as you search for treasures is straightforward but fun, an entertaining way to while away time, and the speed of the battles (some of which can take less than a second to complete) that randomly dot your playtime will no doubt amuse and absorb even the most detached player with the shortest attention span.

Unfortunately, the graphics are nothing to write home about - the art design is typically anime-esque, which is nice enough, but unfortunately outside of some of the spectacular Navi designs there's really very little of note. The 'Net itself is probably the most interesting place the player will go, but unfortunately the threadbare landscapes and repetitive backgrounds won't serve to make anybody particularly fond of the decor. Musically the game is stuck in the GBA era, but it has some very memorable themes (the boss theme, for one) which serve as excellent backgrounds for much of the game. No doubt you'll find yourself humming along at some point out of enjoyment.

To conclude this overly-long, overwrought review, MMBN as a series is incredible. Relentless action that requires deep thinking, awareness, skill and understanding of the complex mechanics that manage the game? Anyone who enjoys hand-held gaming should sign themselves up!

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March 18, 2011
Megaman Jack-in Power-Up!!!! I loved that show back in the day. The battle Network is a great series. I'm glad there are other people out there who realize how awesome it was. :) Megaman Battle Network 4 or maybe 5 where prob my fav of the series. Great games. :D
April 12, 2011
God, how HIGH did I even have to BE just to not notice this COMMENT like that???
Really? 4 & 5? I don't even know where to start with that, man. I recommend you play the first one again, just so you can realise what you're missing out on. XD
I never actually watched any of the shows (my friend did and he hated them with a passion, so I never bothered) but I hear they were god-awful. I don't even know, man. =D
April 12, 2011
No way those shows were the best thing about Saturday mornings. Wake up watch Megaman wait a hour or two and watch Yu-Gi-Oh good memories. I love 4 because it was the first one I got then I started to work backwards (played all 6 ^_^). But 4 holds a special place in my heart for being the first. 5 is awesome the big tactical battles are so fun and the Colonel is in it. He's my fav Megman chara ever. When he made his debut in the battle Network games you know I was there and had to buy his version. That's why I love those two more than the others. :)
February 21, 2011
I LOVED ALL THE BATTLE NETWORK SERIES!! I dont know why but even if they didnt changed thaaaat much between games i just became obssesed with them @_@, and im still getting the new starforce games <3
February 21, 2011
I know, right?! They're so gooooooood! I LOVE MMBN!!! :D StarForce was kind of a letdown, but it's still alright. It's just, even when MMBN6 took so much of the series and weirded it up, I was still like "OMG THIS GAME IS AMAZING". Especially because my best friend in school was into the series too! We would play together all the time and I would dominate him in MMBN1, he'd beat me at all the others. GATOR FTW!!!! >:D
February 22, 2011
That's so cool T_T! I've never had anyone to play games with like that, only a couple of games, with a couple of friends, but only mainstream stuff that everyone plays, like naruto fighting games or monster hunter T.T
February 22, 2011
My friend was never really into RPGs as much as I am, but he was a really niche gamer in other respects. Like, he owns nearly every Kojima Productions title ever released, for one, and he was a Clover fan back when they were really new, and whatnot. So we always used to play each other's games and learn stuff like that. For instance, he got me into Viewtiful Joe, I got him into Kingdom Hearts, etc. It was really awesome. XD
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