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This page is about the NES game Mega Man. For other games with the same title, see Mega Man (PC) or Mega Man (Game Gear). For its remake, see Mega Man Powered Up.

Mega Man, known as Rockman (ロックマン Rokkuman) in Japan, is the first game in the titular franchise. It was released in Japan and North America in 1987 and in the United Kingdom and Europe in 1989 and 1990, respectively.


North American Instruction Manual[]

"It's Mega Man versus the powerful leaders and fighting forces of Monsteropolis - that strange multi-faceted land of robot-like Humanoids."

Brilliant scientist Dr. Light conceived the construction of fully-operational human-like experimental robots to perform specific everyday duties. Dr. Light, and his assistant Dr. Wily, encouraged by their very first near-human robot - Mega Man - proceeded to develop six additional Humanoids, all programmed to perform prescribed rituals:

(the six industrial robots are shown)

But, with the exception of Mega Man, all of Dr. Light's near-human robot experimentation went awry. Assistant Dr. Wily turned disloyal, re-programming Dr. Light's Humanoids, now bent on destroying opposition so Dr. Wily could control the world and its resources.

Resisting re-programming, Mega Man is chosen as the defender of the universe and its inhabitants. Mega Man dares to single-handedly penetrate seven separate empires of Monsteropolis, eliminating the leaders and followers of these sovereignties."


Original Story[]

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The story of the Mega Man universe begins in the mid-20th century with the birth of Thomas Light and Albert W. Wily. These men would attend the same university, the Robot Institute of Technology,[1] studying the field of electronics and eventually receiving PhDs. Some years later, Dr. Light formed a laboratory with the ambition to use computer and electronic technology to benefit mankind in the coming era. Dr. Wily, meanwhile, tired of being one step behind Dr. Light, constructed a secret robot factory in the Pacific and began to plot a way to conquer the world.[2]

Dr. Light made his first leaps in the field of robotics, creating various robots to benefit mankind. Light realized the potential of his projects. He wanted to create robots that were human-like. He wanted to build robots that contained artificial intelligence within them. Thus, Dr. Light produced the first one of such robots - Proto Man. Proto Man was the base design of the Sniper Joe robots but was instilled with artificial intelligence, unlike anything the world had ever seen. Yet, Proto Man possessed a true sense of independence, one that made him much like true human beings. When it came to light that Proto Man had a faulty power generator, Proto Man misunderstood his creator's intentions, thinking that repairing him would take away his individuality. Because of this, he ran from the lab. (In the remake Mega Man Powered Up, Proto Man also seems to resent Dr. Light.)

Still, Light did not give up. Later he set to work on building a pair of robots, thinking that two would work together and overcome the independence issue. It was thus that Rock and Roll were born. Rock became the lab's new assistant and Roll became a housekeeper. With the success of this project, the good doctor went on to create six more robots, each for industrial assistance purposes: Cut Man, Guts Man, Ice Man, Bomb Man, Fire Man, and the prized Elec Man. (In Mega Man Powered Up, Oil Man and Time Man were added, although their canonicity is questionable.)

Soon, Dr. Albert W. Wily finally had enough of living in the shadow of his former colleague, Dr. Thomas Light. Light's reception of the Nobel Prize, as well as his winning the LIT Manual Design Contest drove him over the edge. Wily realized the potential of robots built with true A.I. - they could be used for other means.

Mega Man[]

Dr. Wily stole and reprogrammed all of Dr. Light's industrial robots. However, unwisely, he missed Rock and his "sister," Roll, as the helper robots did not suit his needs. Dr. Light soon discovered that his former colleague was to blame. With Wily on the loose with an army of intelligent and powerful robots, Dr. Light knew that the world's police forces and armies weren't ready to deal with this new challenge.

It was thus that Rock, the lab assistant, volunteered to be converted into a fighting robot. Rock had a strong sense of justice and couldn't sit by and watch his "father's" work be destroyed before his very eyes. As such, on May 25, 200X,[3] Light reluctantly converted the former lab assistant into a robot of unimaginable potential. Equipped with Ceratanium armor and the Mega Buster, Rock became known as the super robot Mega Man and set out for Wily's fortress to stop Wily from taking over the world.


  • DLN-001 Mega Man: The main protagonist of the series and the player's character.
  • Doctor Thomas Light: A brilliant robotic scientist who created many robots, including Mega Man and Roll.
  • Doctor Albert W. Wily: The main antagonist of the series, a mad scientist who wants to conquer the world.
  • DLN-002 Roll: Mega Man's "sister".


Robot Masters[]

Sprite Name Model No. Weapon Weakness
Cut Man DLN-003 Rolling Cutter (C) Super Arm
Guts Man DLN-004 Super Arm (G) Hyper Bomb
Ice Man DLN-005 Ice Slasher (I) Thunder Beam
Bomb Man DLN-006 Hyper Bomb (B) Fire Storm
Fire Man DLN-007 Fire Storm (F) Ice Slasher
Elec Man DLN-008 Thunder Beam (E) Rolling Cutter

Fortress bosses[]

Bosses in Dr. Wily's robot factory:

Stage 1:

Stage 2:

Stage 3:

Final Stage:


Item Type Description Location
Recovery Gives Mega Man an extra life. All Stages
Life Energy (Big)
Recovery Fills up 10 units of Mega Man's health energy. All Stages
Life Energy (Small)
Recovery Fills up 2 units of Mega Man's health energy. All Stages
Magnet Beam
Magnet Beam
Transport Equips Mega Man with the ability to create platforms. Elec Man's Stage
Bonus Ball
Points Increases player's score by 1000 after completing the stage. All Stages
Weapon Energy (Big)
Recovery Fills up 10 units of weapon energy from Mega Man's equipped weapon. All Stages
Weapon Energy (Small)
Recovery Fills up 2 units of weapon energy from Mega Man's equipped weapon. All Stages
Recovery Fills up all of Mega Man's health and weapon energy. Last stage


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The NES release of Mega Man was the first game in the franchise. It included elements seen in almost all platforming Mega Man since, mainly the use of the Mega Buster as the main form of attack, absorbing boss weapons after their defeat and several stage hazards, enemies and more.

Unlike later titles, the names of the Robot Masters were limited to 3 or 4 characters (Ice Man, Fire Man, etc.). It is the only game to feature a scoring system besides its remake, Mega Man Powered Up.

Due to being the first game in the franchise, there are several gameplay elements that are only featured here. Some gameplay elements were added to every subsequent game after:

  • The game does not feature a map showing where Mega Man is in Wily's base.
  • Hazards and enemies can be found in the corridors between doors leading to Robot Masters.
  • "READY" does not flash on the screen before the start of a stage.
  • If a stage is replayed, the Robot Master must be battled again, rather than Mega Man simply teleporting out of the stage.
  • Spikes will still kill Mega Man even if he is flashing from post damage invincibility.
  • Mega Man is not effected by buoyancy when in water. Mega Man: The Wily Wars
  • The player can continue to replay levels after the ending and credits.

Mega Man: The Wily Wars[]

A full remake of the game was included in Mega Man: The Wily Wars alongside Mega Man 2 and 3 as part of a new story involving Dr. Wily traveling back in time to conquer the planet in the past. The game features remade 16-bit graphics and remixed music made with the Sega Mega Drive's sound channels.

Certain tweaks were made to the game compared to the original. Mega Man is not killed by spikes when he is flashing from damage and is affected by buoyancy in water.

2003 mobile phone edition[]

Mega Man (2003)

2003 title screen

There are four different mobile versions of the game. The 2003 version was available for only a few phones and was later replaced by an updated version in 2004. Both versions include the following:

  • Normal Mode is similar to the way the game was originally presented on the NES, where the player is scored and has only three lives. But, if all of them are lost, the player will need to restart at the beginning.
  • Capture Mode is different from normal mode. The player has unlimited lives and a save feature but they are not scored.

It features these differences from the original:

  • The levels are shorter and are designed quite differently from their original counterparts.
  • The Magnet Beam is not located in Elec Man's stage and is now located in Bomb Man's stage near a pair of wall turrets. Colored red.
  • Wily's fortress has been shortened from four stages to one long stage consisting of only the Robot Masters rematches, then the rest of the fortress baddies from the game, including the Yellow Devil. Fortunately, the player now gets life and weapon power-ups between each boss battle.
  • As mobile screens were small at the time, the graphics were made smaller to fit.
  • While almost all of the music tracks from the original game are there, there are no sound effects.
  • The Fire Storm is the only weapon that appears to be effective against the Wily Machine

Mega Man Anniversary Collection[]

Features the Complete Works Nav Mode.

2004 mobile phone edition[]

Mega Man (2004)

2004 title screen

Replacing the 2003 version, the 2004 version had graphical updates and compatibility with more phone models. It features the same game modes and differences from the 2003 version. After the release of the 2007 version, this version became known as "Rockman Lite" in Japan. It was removed from Keitai Capcom sometime between late 2009 and early 2010.

2007 mobile phone edition[]

Rockman (2007)

2007 title screen

The 2007 version was only released in Japan, and is closer to the original than previous versions, which had reduced graphics and shorter levels. It features Roll as a playable character.

  • After completing the game once, Roll becomes available as a playable character.
    • When Roll is selected, the title and stage select screens change, and her theme, Kaze yo Tsutaete, plays on the stage select screen.
    • Roll can't use special weapons, but she can charge her buster. Her charge shots cause more damage and are able to destroy Guts Blocks. However, charge shots consume weapon energy, limiting its use.
    • As Roll can't use the Magnet Beam, the area that requires it in Wily Stage 1 was modified.

Mega Man Mobile (2017 version)[]

This version is based on the 2007 version, but the Roll mode is no longer featured.


  • Normal Mode: Allows unlimited lives, the ability to resume the game on the last screen or before the boss after the player loses a life.
  • Hard Mode: Standard lives, normal halfway points maintained for Robot Master Stages, which are not used in the Dr. Wily Castle levels.
  • Boss Rush: Face all 6 Robot Masters in an endless consecutive battle loop until defeat. Receives Energy or even Weapon Capsules after battle, but during later rounds prizes lessen down and Weapon Energy cannot be refilled between battles.

Game differences:

  • The controller buttons are placed on the screen, with the left side for the directional controls and the right side for jumping, shooting, and weapon switch on the right, with the settings and menu at the corners of the top of the screen.
  • The Pause Glitch has been removed.
  • There are three options of speed available that affect the game's processing speed which can be set up before and during the game with Normal, High Speed, and Turbo.
  • The game has save features which saves automatically after completing or exiting the any level.
  • As the half-way points have been changed in the Wily Castle levels, in Hard Mode, it means restarting back at the entrance of the that level.
  • All Fortress Levels are revisitable and this is done with their own section of the Stage Select Screen which can be accessed through Dr. Wily on the main screen.
  • The points system has been removed entirely and as such the Bonus Ball item has been omitted from this version.
  • The ratio for collecting Energy and Weapon Capsules has been improved.
  • Weapon Energy is completely refilled after the player loses a life and between Fortress levels.
  • Some of the previous attacks on Mega Man are lessened, such as the fact that Ice Man's Ice Slasher or Elec Man's Thunder Beam only do half of the damage compared to the original.
  • The power of Mega Man's Mega Buster has been improved, making it easier to defeat certain enemies such as Big Eye with ease and cause more damage on certain bosses.
  • If the player loses to a Robot Master in their stage, all enemies or traps in the shutter area are removed, making it easier to rechallenge the boss undamaged.
  • Defeating the Robot Masters during their rematch in Wily Castle now grants the player a large Energy Capsule.
  • Similar to Mega Man: The Wily Wars:
    • When using the Super Arm, Guts Blocks are fired in an arc similar to a basketball shot, rather than in a straight line.
    • The ability to mount into ledges easier compared to the original game.
    • The ability to not be affected by spikes during the invincibility frame duration.
  • Also similar to the Rockman Complete Works version, the menu has been redesigned and the weapons each have their own sprite, where the sprites used here are completely new. They are also listed by name, although Thunder Beam is listed by Thunder instead of Elec.
    • The ability to switch weapons without using the menu is also present, but it can only go in one direction, which is actually the weapon located on the right from the previous one.
  • The game shows the weapon icon and a short inscription when the player first defeats the Robot Master such as with Cutman the inscription would state "You Got Rolling Cutter".
  • The player can exit the stage whenever they wish with no requirements.
  • The length of the Hyper Bomb's explosion range has been slightly downsized, making it harder to hit certain targets such as Guts Man.
  • The Guts Blocks used by the Super Arm now only do half the amount of damage to Cut Man.
  • The Magnet Beam puzzle from Wily Castle 1 has been completely removed. Instead that area has been slightly redesigned with new ladders and a slight ledge addition to remove the need for it.


Rockman Rockman Art 01

Promo art of Rockman Rockman for the Japanese release.

A full remake of the game, titled Mega Man Powered Up, was released on the PlayStation Portable in March 2006. The game features the same story as the original game but adds two additional Robot Masters: Time Man and Oil Man to the boss roster, bringing up the total stage select bosses up to eight like the rest of the series. Oil Man was originally designed for the original Mega Man, but was ultimately replaced with Ice Man. Also among the changes the game made was the ability to play as the Robot Masters if they are defeated by only using the Mega Buster, allowing Dr. Light to repair and reprogram them. Proto Man and Roll are also playable via download. Roll has several costumes the player can select from. The game featured a level editor allowing players to create custom levels and upload them, however the service has since been closed.


Mega Man featured two pause buttons, the Start button, which would pause the game and bring up the weapon selection menu, and the Select button, which would pause the movements of everything on screen. However, the Select button would not pause certain timers, namely the timer used for the temporary post-damage invincibility experienced by Mega Man and the bosses. As such, the player could fire a shot at a boss, pause the game when the shot hits the boss, wait about 1–2 seconds, unpause the game, and the boss would take damage again from the same shot (the game can be paused and unpaused again until the boss dies). This trick is notably easier with the Thunder Beam and Rolling Cutter, as shots from those weapons do not disappear after hitting an enemy (the trick IS possible with weapons like the Mega Buster, but the player must have precise timing to pause the game before the shot disappears). This trick allows for the easy defeat of difficult bosses such as the Yellow Devil in a matter of seconds.

To avoid this glitch in other games, it is no longer possible to pause the game with the Select button in Mega Man 2 and later games. This glitch was also fixed in remakes of Mega Man. In Mega Man Anniversary Collection's version, pushing the Start button brings up the overall menu for the collection. It has the same effect, but it is much slower and a little more difficult to do.

Virtual Console[]

Wii Shop Description[]

Join the blue bomber in his first adventure as he battles the evil Dr. Wily and his robotic henchmen to restore peace to a troubled world. Mega Man is a super-robot created by the genius scientist Dr. Light. When Dr. Wily goes rouge with an army of six of his own robot masters, it's up to Mega Man to put a stop to his nefarious plot by traversing a series of stages rife with enemies, traps, and perilous platform challenges. At the end of each stage, conquer one of the robot masters and claim his weapon as your own, using it to your advantage in subsequent fights!

3DS eShop Description[]

Join the blue bomber in his first ever adventure as he battles the evil Dr. Wily and his robotic henchmen to restore peace to a troubled world. Mega Man is a super robot created by the genius scientist, Dr. Light. When another scientist by the name of Dr. Wily goes rouge with an army of six of his own devious Robot Masters, it's up to Mega Man to put a stop to his nefarious plot by traversing a series of stages rife with enemies, traps, and perilous platform challenges. At the end of each stage, conquer one of the Robot Masters and claim their weapon as your own, using it to your advantage in subsequent fights!

Wii U eShop Description[]

Join the blue bomber in his first-ever adventure as he battles the evil Dr. Wily and his robotic henchmen to restore peace to a troubled world. Mega Man is a super-robot created by the genius scientist Dr. Wright. When another scientist by the name of Dr. Wily goes rouge with six devious Robot Masters, it's up to Mega Man to put a stop to his nefarious plot by traversing a series of stages rife with enemies, traps, and perilous platform challenges. At the end of each stage, conquer one of the Robot Masters and claim its weapon as your own, using it to your advantage in subsequent fights!



Elec Man was the first video game character designed by Keiji Inafune.

Character designer Keiji Inafune knew nothing of video game design when he was put on the team to make Mega Man within a year of being hired at Capcom. [4] Cut Man, Guts Man and Ice Man already had rough outlines by the time Inafune joined, and Cut Man and Ice Man retained most of their original design. As the newest member of the team, Inafune was tasked with creating Elec Man and Bomb Can, and helped with Guts Man and Fire Man's dot motion. Elec Man was the first character Inafune designed. [5] Inafune was also charged with designing the enemies in the game along with their sprites and names. He had several issues giving the enemies the amount of detail he wanted due to the NES's dot matrix. [6]

Roll was originally meant to have a much larger role in the game, and in addition to the storyline revolving around her being kidnapped by Dr. Wily, a giant version of her was going to be fought as the final boss.[7]

The American box art was completely different from the actual Mega Man concept. The reason for this was that the Capcom's American game developers thought that the cuteness of the character would not be attractive in the eyes of the U.S.A's public. That was also the reasoning behind changing "Rockman" to "Mega Man" - an attempt to make it sound more "western". However, the designer of the cover was asked to create it with little to no time before the game was released and had never viewed any of the source material or seen the game, thus creating a cover that almost has nothing to do with the game. It is generally rated as one of the worst box art covers in video game history.[8]

Several elements in the NES manual were invented by the Capcom of America localization team and are not officially in the series continuity. These include things Dr. Light and Dr. Wily being partners, as well as the city of Monsteropolis, ignoring the Rock and Roll backstory completely, and Wily attempting to reprogram Rock / Mega Man and meeting resistance. The concept of Light and Wily being partners and friends in their youth was later added into the continuity in Mega Man 11, retconning the English manual as canon lore.



Box artwork[]



  • Even though the Yashichi can refill all of the health and Special Weapon's energy, the Rockman manual does not give this info, keeping it a mystery.

Resident Evil 3 Demo - What's behind the fire? (walk through wall mod)

Mega Man featured in Resident Evil 3 (2020).

  • The American box art appears in the game Mega Man ZX Advent as the Secret Disk "Legendary Hero", given as a reward for completing Chris' sidequest.
  • Dr Wily's "Swiss Bank Account" number (19-871-217) in Mega Man 9 is actually this game's Japanese and United States release date (1987/12/17, which means December 17 of the year 1987 in YYYY/MM/DD format).
  • Mega Man was the only NES game in the series to not have any Robot Masters on the American box art. They are on the European and Famicom covers, however.
  • Rock, Roll, and Dr. Light go unnamed throughout the whole game; they are only seen at the end. The Yellow Devil, the Copy Robot, and the seven CWU-01P(s) are also unnamed in the game. Dr. Wily is the only part of his name given; there's no "Albert W." The weapons are not given names either. (M stands for Magnet Beam, and P may stand for Power or Player.)
  • This game and Mega Man 3 are the only games to have all Robot Masters to appear in the Ruby Spears cartoon show.
    • Cut Man and Guts Man also appear in all twenty-seven episodes of the cartoon.
  • The Japanese promo commercial of Rockman shows Mega Man using the wrong Special Weapons against the Robot Masters, such as Mega Man using the Thunder Beam on Guts Man, whose weakness is the Hyper Bomb.
  • Many people believe that Elec Man's stage music was inspired by the song "Faithfully" by Journey, from their classic 1983 album Frontiers. The songs do sound very similar to each other and are even played in the same key signature. However, according to the composer for Mega Man, Manami Matsumae, the resemblance between Elec Man's stage music and "Faithfully" by Journey is just a coincidence.[9] It also sounds extremely similar to R.E.M.'s "All The Right Friends."
  • Due to Nintendo's 1989 lawsuit against Blockbuster for the rental of Nintendo titles with photocopies of the manuals, companies replaced the original manuals with generic copies, which could have some differences. For example, some copies of Mega Man had a slightly changed story, with Dr. Light being named Dr. Kynes and murdered by Dr. Wily when the jealous assistant stole his robots.[10]
  • Originally the score displayed when selecting a Robot Master would be amount of points that would be earned upon defeating that Robot Master. However, with the Switch version of Mega Man Legacy Collection, it is now possible to cheat by using the game's rewind feature to rewind the game to before selecting a Robot Master which will change the amount of points that are earned if that same Robot Master is chosen.

See also[]

Game info[]


External links[]