"My work is not for Maverick Hunters. I've never trusted your approach. Therefore, I won't cooperate with you."
―Shining Firefly, Mega Man X5

Shining Firefly, known as Shining Hotarunicus[2] (シャイニング・ホタルニクス Shainingu Hotarunikusu) in Japan, also known as Izzy Glow[3] is a character from the Mega Man X series. Shining Firefly was a firefly-based Reploid who was in possession of the Laser Device needed to repair the Enigma cannon.


Shining Firefly is a short Reploid with a firefly design. He possessed wings on his back and antennae on his head, and his face was designed to resemble goggles and a mustache to emphasize his intelligence. He had mostly red and black armor, which accentuated his luminescent wings and abdomen.

Firefly is a reclusive and anti-social genius. He is a Doctor of Engineering and the world's leading researcher in laser technology. He rarely allows any of his work to see the light of day, out of fear that it would be used to create weapons. However, due to the large scale virus outbreak he is already infected by the time the Maverick Hunters arrive at his lab near the Kuril Islands. While still in his right mind, he asks the Hunters to put him down before he becomes a Maverick.


Shining Firefly teleports about, shooting F-Laser firefly shots, and firing large laser beams from his abdomen. Electricity is his weakness, so use Tri-Thunder if playing as X or E-Blade if playing as Zero.

  • Body Blow (体当たり) - Shining Firefly will teleport around the room and fly at his opponent's direction to cause contact damage. This is his main attack and becomes faster as he takes damage.
  • Will Laser (ウィルレーザー, F-Laser) - Shining Firefly will launch a firefly-shaped robot that target the position of the player. The firefly also leaves a light trail right behind it, and it will break after a while. X gains this attack as a Special Weapon once he defeats Shining Firefly.
  • Prism Laser (プリズムレーザー) - Shining Firefly will start firing a horizontal laser attack after losing 25% of his health, and he will also fire it vertically after losing 75% of his health.
  • Prism Shot (プリズムショット) - Only used when he loses 75% of his health. Eight lights appear on the floor, then light balls fly.



Main article: Laser Institute Stage


Laser Device required

Shining Firefly: What a graceful entrance...
X: This laboratory is so badly infected by the virus, there's no other way for me to enter.
Shining Firefly: Humph! You Hunters always do that... My work is not for Maverick Hunters. I've never trusted your approach. Therefore, I won't cooperate with you.
X: Doctor... I don't have time to argue with you. Please understand.

Shining Firefly: My body... has already been infected, too. I realize I may have been wrong... But it's too late to change now... I've made up my mind... Now, let me rest in peace!

Zero: Dr. Shining Firefly, will you do us a favor?

Shining Firefly: My work is not for Maverick Hunters. I've never trusted your approach. Therefore, I won't cooperate with you. However... I find you fascinating... No one has ever managed to analyze the infamous X and Zero... But it's too late... Soon, I'll be one of the Mavericks... It's time... I'll have to learn about you through battle. Now... put me out of my misery!

Laser Device unrequired

Shining Firefly: Woooooo... I feel dizzy... I seem to have been infected by the... ...virus... I'm feeling an urge to attack you...
X: Doctor! Are you all right? Come to the Hunter base with me...
Shining Firefly: No... It's too late... I'm losing consciousness...

X: No! He has become a Maverick! Doctor... Please... rest in peace...

Zero: Dr. Shining Firefly... Oh, am I too late?

Shining Firefly: Yes, you are. I've already been infected by the Virus. However, I'm still interested in you. X and Zero, whom nobody has ever succeeded in analyzing... I guess my only hope is to analyze you by fighting you before I lose myself completely and become a Maverick... Now, fight me. And put me out of my misery!

Other Media

Archie Comics

Firefly appears in the Archie Mega Man, Sonic the Hedgehog, and Sonic Boom crossover event Worlds Unite, which also includes the X franchise. He is one of numerous Mavericks cloned by Sigma-1 to form an army.




Production Notes

Developer Comments
"This boss was also settled on from the start. He's not plain evil, he's an intelligent, stubborn professor. I think he got a design that nicely echoes my mental image of him. There's actually a goof-up, though...I screwed up his coloring in the middle of designing him. There were two versions, red and yellow, and I'd decided on yellow, but things went crazy and I had a dot picture made with the unaccepted red. I noticed this at the last stages of the development, but by then it was too late."[4][5]

Designer Comments
"The majority of an actual firefly's body is blackish, so I designed him that way, but I didn't want to get people thinking, "Is this a cockroach?" I thus considered red, yellow, or white (doctor's coat) schemes, ultimately choosing red. He's a red-faced old man. His white mustache and glasses convey his scientist feel."[4][5]

"I was told that Firefly would be a sort of professor like character, so that could only mean two things: glasses and distinguished facial hair! The red stripe I put along the top of his head is supposed to be a sort of bald look." -Haruki Suetsugu, Mega Man X Official Complete Works, 2009[1]


  • In the original American release, Shining Firefly was named Izzy Glow, after Izzy Stradlin, the former guitarist of the rock band Guns N' Roses.[6]
  • Interestingly, Shining Firefly's wings are orange in his official artwork, but his in-game sprite's wings are green.
  • His Japanese name "Hotarunicus" is derived from "hotaru", Japanese for firefly.