Legacy of Metal
is the collective name for the Mega Man
fan fiction of Eric Lawson
and the common continuity that it shares. Many elements are based on Rockman: the Robot War
, which the author cites as one of his major inspirations, though it has a markedly different style. The first stories starring X were written in the late 1990s, with Lawson later expanding the setting both backwards and forwards in time.The timeline
sets Mega Man
1-8 and Mega Man and Bass
in the late 21st century, with Mega Man himself born in 2070 and dying in 2085, and Mega Man X
in the early 22nd, X himself being discovered in 2117. An Uncertain Future
used "20XX" and "21XX," but this was abandoned in favor of the more precise timeline.
As of October 2010, four other authors have been credited
as co-authors within the Legacy of Metal: Magus
, and RoyFokker99
These stories provide examples of:
- Aborted Arc: Erico's livejournal shows pieces of a continuation of Shadows of a Hunter (the Mega Man Zero adaptation), but he seems content to keep the story at its current ending.
- Adaptation Expansion
- A Father to His Men: Dr. Cain
- All There in the Manual: Erico's devoted an essay of sorts to explains the physics at work in the MMX series.
- Alternate Universe: In which Light wins the Contest, leading to the setting of Mega Man Battle Network.
- Amnesiac Dissonance: ''Relics of Madness'' showcases truly awesome demonstrations of just exactly what Snake Man can do when he reawakens without Wily's kill-all-humans programming due to a freak thunderstorm.
- Apocalypse How: Several close swipes with Class 5s over a span of just a few years.
- Ascended Extra: The Green Biker Dude goes by the name Gearloose and has his character established a bit (he plays a Lancer/Smart Guy mix in Zero's absence) before he bites the dust.
- Awesome but Impractical: The stories depict Zero's signature Buster combo as this; in ''Working The Holidays'', he's only able to get it off by Faking the Dead as the charge time is just unworkable in actual combat.
- Badass Normal: Randolph "Bulldog" Hayes. To an extent, any MSWAT team - even the underfunded Maverick Hunters have high-level equipment and two of the three most powerful beings in existence on their side. (Note that Hayes was the creation of Erico's protege Magus, and not Erico himself. Hayes was featured in a short story in the compilation From The Sidelines)
- The Berserker: Zero before transferring the virus to Sigma.
- Call Forward: Zero's full name.
- Chapter 17 of Guiding Rainbow's Light has a few. Vinkus talks about "everlasting peace", the final two words of the original Mega Man (as well as Rockman: The Robot War), while the shadow organization Vinkus establishes is MI9-lasting through all of the Classic series and half of the X series before we get to A Sound of Mavericks
- The Call Knows Where You Live
- Chekhov's Gunman: Dr. Cossack, and to a greater extent his robot masters.
- Christmas Cake: Kalinka Cossack. We're spared the Purple Prose, but narration consistently suggests she could easily become a professional model in her forties.
- Continuity Nod: Many. Lampshaded by characters who think X should take up history teaching rather than explaining some of them.
- Creator Breakdown: In-universe: Dr. Light breaks down psychologically following the deaths of his "children," becoming a recluse.
- Creator Thumbprint: The author has a thing for snowflakes. Always has. They're used not only in Whispers In Time, but also Guiding Rainbow's Light (though with different meanings). And probably in other stories too, if I remembered hard enough.
- Darker and Edgier: In spades.
- Deadpan Snarker: Bass' narration has a touch of this.
- Dead Person Conversation: Utterly bizarre example: a dead person talks to a not-yet-alive person who can't hear him in Whispers In Time. It's still touching, and also counts as a Take Up My Sword (er, buster?) moment.
Rock: X...the world is yours now. We've done all we can. It's up to you. But remember this, X. No matter where you go, no matter what you do, we'll be watching. Smiling. Watching you grow up. Help the world, X. Our age is gone, and it'll be up to you to guide the world during your own age. But I know you're up for the challenge, little brother. You're stronger, smarter, better than we ever were in life. And you have the legacy. It's the legacy of us, X. The Mega Men. So make us proud, X. Make us proud.
- Do Androids Dream?: In the pre-X era. Reploids are explicitly on par with humans.
- Fallen Hero: Wily.
- Fandom-Specific Plot: The recurring Mega Man X story of Cain's final case rears its head.
- Fantastic Racism
- Fan Verse: The inspiration for the trope, in fact.
- Five-Man Band: Zephyr Team from the Joint Project "Mega Man X: Maverick Hunters", fits this Trope nicely, albeit with slight imperfections.
- Forever War: How Rock comes to view his feud with Wily.
- Freak Lab Accident: How Blues went missing and Wily's brain was damaged.
- Generation Xerox: Despite all of Dr. Light's hopes and efforts, X ends up following in Rock's footsteps.
- Graceful Loser: Overdrive Ostrich, to the point where it seems he's not infected with The Virus. Naturally, X angsts about this.
- Healing Factor: X and Zero (and by extension most reploids) have one of these thanks to Nanomachines. This is a problem for the original cast when fighting the latter, nearly but not quite reducing two characters' final moments to a Senseless Sacrifice.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Quite a few of these. Let's see...Latchkey, Walter Hastings, RD-224, Blues, Bass, Rock, Roll, X, Zero...
- Heroic Self-Deprecation: The Mega Men both insist that they're just men whose circumstances went beyond their control. Rock, at least, snaps out of it to give himself credit a couple of times. Ironically, their eventual successor is more than willing to call himself a hero...and far less of one.
- Heroic Willpower: How Wycost rids himself of The Virus, but it's implied to have been a long, difficult process. And then X makes a habit of doing it pretty quickly.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: Violen is beaten so savagely with his own mace as to be pitiable. Sigma's first One-Winged Angel transformation partially ends this way - X pulls his Laser Blade from the ground and slices open Sigma's neck. Oh, and said sword also becomes a gift to Zero, making it even more so.
- Intergenerational Friendship: Tomoko and Dr. Light. The Cossacks and X are an odd example as well.
- Jossed: Some aspects, especially the whole "Zero killed em all" thing. Erico seems to think Maverick Hunter X did this to a lot of the verse, but then, nobody's quite sure how much of that counts...
- Kick the Dog: Copy-X standing over the immobile body of the real X and mocking him in Shadows Of A Hunter. He never gets his in the story itself, but we all know it's coming.
- Kill 'em All: Whispers In Time.
- Knight in Sour Armor: Wily before going insane, later Mega Man. Fittingly, pre-virus Sigma has a minor case of this going as well.
- Lampshade Hanging: At the end of Whispers In Time, X and Zero briefly discuss the events of Mega Man Xtreme - even they, who were there, don't quite understand the plot.
- Last of His Kind: Duo is the last of the Watchers, a race of psychic Sufficiently Advanced Alien robots at war with those carrying the Evil Energy.
- Law Enforcement, Inc.: Dr. Cain funds the Maverick Hunters with his own fortune in order to keep out undue government influence. To varying degrees it succeeds, but the protection is not absolute.
- Lighter and Softer: Only by comparison with Rockman: the Robot War, mind you.
- Long Runners: End of a Dream was written in April 2000, and he's still at it, having completed the most recent story in September 2010.
- Madness Mantra: Destroy, infect, survive, destroy, infect, survive, destroy, infect, survive...
- Mad Scientist: Wily gives off this impression.
- Motive Decay: By the end of his life, Wily doesn't care about anything but beating Mega Man. Justified by his worsening brain damage due to constant use of warp and cloaking devices.
- My Master, Right or Wrong: The Guardians, not that they're thrilled about it. Harpuia is barely hiding his disgust but seems at least slightly afraid of Copy-X. Phantom, who has no ties to the real X, nevertheless seems to take way too much pleasure informing the clone that Zero has been awakened.
- Nanomachines: Used to explain some of the wonkier weapons from the games.
- No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: X delivers these when he gets really angry.
- Novelization: An Uncertain Future and Island Of Awakening, of Mega Man X and X2 respectively.
- Shadows of a Hunter is this for the early stages of Mega Man Zero, with a quick-and-dirty run through X5 as well.
- Obstructive Bureaucrat: Cristoph, ye gods. His motives in this essentially boil down to Fantastic Racism.
- The Obi-Wan: Zero, for most of Island Of Awakening.
- Offscreen Moment of Awesome: Shadows of a Hunter suggests some epic action sequences throughout its summary of X5; sadly none of them get much in the way of detail.
- Old Shame: End of a Dream, the first story written.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: Wily never tells anybody Zero's name, though he programs it into Zero's knowledge banks. Bass and everyone else call him Wily's Demon.
- Original Character: Both human and Reploid.
- Playful Hacker: Latchkey.
- Rashomon Plot: Whispers In Time comes close, but there's no disagreement on the actual events — different characters just have different perspectives and thoughts.
- Rock Beats Laser: Aside from anything Mega Man pulls off, a standard magnum poses a real threat to Reploids. Overlaps with Boring but Practical, as the vast majority simply can't muster up the same power X or Zero can with the standard-issue busters and sabers. Might also be a Shout-Out to the signature weapon of Axl, who may or may not later exist in the continuity.
- Robot Names: Blues's proper name, for instance, is "DL#00 Protoman."
- Shout-Out: One of the three major robot contractors is US Robotics.
- Spell My Name with an "S": Unlike in the games proper, X takes exception to being called a Reploid as he technically is not one. Zero doesn't object so strongly, at first because he doesn't know precisely what he is.
- Teen Genius: Latchkey again. Ciel is still the biggest example, as she is apparently considered more brilliant than the entire Second Rainbow!
- Techno Babble: Guiding Rainbow's Light has oodles of surprisingly plausible-sounding babble. One older nonfiction piece is devoted to working out the physics of The Verse.
- Three-Laws Compliant: A standard feature of the Core Module; Reploids don't have it built in. Rock and his "siblings" can break them sometimes.
- Third Option Adaptation: The ending of X2 is subject to this - X recovers all of the parts, but Violen invades the base and takes Zero back for Sigma to corrupt. Cue I Know You Are In There Somewhere Fight.
- Title Drop: The phrase "legacy of metal" has been used exactly once, in chapter 14 of Guiding Rainbow's Light (numbered 15 by FanFiction.Net).
- An Uncertain Future has the annoying habit of dropping nearly every chapter title.
- Unstoppable Rage: Rock's specialty. X cranks this Up to Eleven. Zero also does this at the end of Demons Of The Past when he goes after Sigma, following the (second) death of Iris.
- Villains Act, Heroes React: In Chapter 9 of Island of Awakening, Serges references this directly, saying X can only react, while they (the X-Hunters) always make the first move.
- In Demons of the Past, Signas (who up to this point has been presented as the Hunter HQ's Obstructive Bureaucrat and Replacement Scrappy) comes up with a strategy that inverts this at last, challenging Sigma and his current band of Mavericks to a confrontation at the Hokkaido cliffs (also the site where Sigma's fortress was built in An Uncertain Future) first. X, Zero, and the other Hunters use this advantage to set up an ambush with a delayed attack force that catches most of the Mavericks off guard. In no small way a Crowning Moment of Awesome for the Hunters.
- Villains Out Shopping: Copy-X is shown gathering intelligence and planning a playground for children.
- Wave Motion Gun: SKYLIGHT's plasma cannon.
- "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Bass, definitely. Blues has a little of this, but it conflicts with his stubbornness.
- Wham Episode: Guiding Rainbow's Light has one practically every other chapter. And it works.
- Also, when you realize the relation between The copy Mega Man, Doc Robot, and Dark Man.
- "World of Cardboard" Speech: Of all people, Bass gets one of the best. Maybe it runs in the family?
- World War III
And, of course, all applicable Mega Man
tropes whenever they turn up.