Fridge / Mega Man X

  • How is Zero able to survive his "death" at the end of the first game, being rebuilt with his personality and memories intact, while reploids like Iris stay dead and the original games bosses can't be brought back personality wise (as we can see in Maverick Hunter X, Sigma is seemingly only able to create functional but mindless facsimiles of their originals to guard his fortress)? Because like with X, Zero isn't a reploid, he's a robot, with what amounts of a Black Box of a brain.
  • You may be wondering why, in X5, that this is considered to be X's 'Bad' ending. After all, despite the death and disappearance of Zero, X is fully repaired and the world is getting back to normal, with X talking about his dreams. Think about it. The dream that X is talking about is actually Foreshadowing for the formation of Neo Arcadia in the Mega Man Zero series, and, (if Keiji Inafune had his way), his eventual Face–Heel Turn. And, with no Zero around to stop him....
    • Then again, that ending implies that both Zero and Sigma stayed dead, and the backstory of the Mega Man Zero series established that Zero was a carrier of the Sigma Virus and was unknowingly spreading it around the world, and that the cure to virus was discovered in his AI. Said cure was weaponized by Weil, who started the Elf Wars and razed the planet before being stopped. Since none of that will ever come to pass, maybe the X in that version of events will accomplish his goals and create a real utopia.
    • Dr. Weil and Dark Elf are likely new additions that the writers didn't plan of when they make the first game; you can easily imagine X's canon ending of X5 (or his bad ending) leading to Zero 1 while Zero's X6 ending (which was Inafune's compensation, by the way) explains those two aforementioned elements and leads to Zero 2 and 3.
  • In one of the X7 endings, Zero has a nightmare in which he and an Ax-Crazy X are fighting to the death. What do you face in the Zero series? An Ax-Crazy doppelgänger of X. Counts as a Shout-Out rather than Foreshadowing because "X7" came out after the Zero series began.
  • Maverick Hunter X introduces a possible reason for Zero's Superhero Speciation away from using his buster: he can't aim it. In Day of Sigma he fails utterly at hitting the Mechaniloid's weak point without hitting its hostage (something which Sigma claimed X was able to do) and in the intro stage of the game proper he tries to shoot Vile when he's escaping in the Death Rogumer, with similar results. The only moment when he actually succeeded in using it was when 1) he shoots Vile's Ride Armor's arm in the opening, and 2) when he was trying to blow up Vile's Ride Armor from point-blank range.
    • A problem that gets remedied in Zero's own series, where he gets his hands on a Buster handgun with a sight.
    • Wait, you mean how he missed blowing out the giant mechaniloid's leg, thereby slowing it down and exposing the generator?
      • That wasn't due to accuracy. If you look closer, you'll notice that Zero had dashed into point-blank range of his target before firing.
      • Also it explains his attack style on latter games when he becomes a boss, where he either uses charged shots (with large Area of effect) or spams it on every direction hoping one of those shots hits, when he uses his buster he relies more on firepower than on accuracy.
    • Should clarify: Zero failing to hit the Mechaniloid's weak point was not when he damaged its leg with a point-blank buster shot, but when he ran a simulation where he had to make the same shot that X faced (and ultimately didn't take); Zero chose to take the shot but hit only the hostage.
  • Fridge Brilliance: The Zero parts acquired from the X-Hunters in X2 match them perfectly. Violen is the strongest of the X-Hunters, and has Zero's body. Agile, the fastest, has the legs, and Serges, the most intelligent, has the head.
  • Remember Enigma Cannon? Y'know, the big-ass laser cannon from X5 whose name has nothing to do with its function? There are some reasons for its meaning.
    • First, the entire franchise comes from Japan, and we all know how Japan is so much in love with cool-sounding foreign words.
    • Second, its mere existence in X5 is also the reason why it was called Enigma. There were never any mention about said weapon from previous games. The closest we could have for a gigantic laser cannon is Final Weapon, and we all know what happened to it. When X5 came, it just came out of the blue mysteriously.
      • In X4, what appears to be the Enigma Weapon can be seen in the background of Web Spider's stage, and it later dominates the backdrop of Web's chambers. He must have been a Repliforce officer associated with it!
    • Finally, the most important reason why the Enigma Cannon was named like that was because...well, it was an enigma. At first, people kept on looking for the meaning, from any available and possible standpoint, before they just give up. There might be a real meaning of its name, other than just for sounding cool. But until someone finds that meaning, it will stay as a mystery, hence the name Enigma. The name pretty much self-demonstrates itself.
  • After replaying the second and third X series games, I realized why the bosses had blue explosions when they died, as opposed to the reddish orange ones seen everywhere else. The bosses were upgraded to the absolute limit, making their bodies run "hotter" to generate enough power. After X3, the heroes' power meters default size jumped to 32, with the max being 48. The increase was an upgrade in order for Reploids to take full advantage of advancing technology and to function properly.
  • This Troper gave some thought on why Zero is named "Zero", How he can do exceptionally high close range damage at the expense of low armor, and also as a character why he has a tendency to rush headlong to face impossible odds, performing extraordinarily heroic feats getting himself killed at least three times counting both series he participates in the process. Then I remembered the Japanese airplanes employed during World War II, The A 6 M 2 "Zeroes" who were destructive in close range, but fragile compared to most other fighter planes, and several pilots who were about to die or ran out of ammunition... who were instructed beforehand by their superiors that they may not make it out alive, crashed their ships into targets as a last ditch effort, creating the suicidal term known as "Kamikaze", and they were revered for such heroic acts. Interesting stuff.
    • Becomes more brilliant in Marvel vs Capcom 3. The opening quote for Captain America to Zero is "Your name's Zero? Hope you don't fight like one." Now what war did Cap fight in? And what war did the A 6 M 2 Zeroes fight in? That's right, Cap isn't insulting Zero, he's tense about his fighting style.
    • There's also another interesting theory about Zero's name. You see, in mathematic term, x means a variable with limitless potential. Now, no matter what value x is, if timed by zero (or divided by zero, although the former seems much more safer), the result will be the same: nothing. Zero's purpose? To destroy X
      • Actually the above explanation is a lot closer to the truth - as "0 & X" are both math terms, where 0 means 'nothing, empty, void, or devoid of meaning' X means 'limitless, potential, unlimited, full of meaning'
      • Another good explanation is that Wily was trying not to make another Bass. Bass was made for pretty much the same purpose as Zero, but his enormous ego repeatedly got in the way of his mission, and on multiple occasions caused Bass to turn on Wily. Zero, in contrast, thinks less about himself, and more about destroying his enemies and completing his mission.
  • In the X series, many of the bosses have an animal theme (Gravity Beetle, Rainy Turtloid, Blizzard Buffalo, and so forth). This is in direct contrast to the Classic series, where the bosses are humanoid Something Men (and a Something Woman).
    • Made more brilliant when you realize the context of the two games: robot bosses who appear more human than the era would expect (Classic) as contrasted to bosses who act less human (X).
    • Also, it makes sense that one of the first bosses would be a mandrill.
  • I've always wondered why they say that, as of X8, Sigma is Deader Than Dead. But then I looked at his most recent body: partly completed, with viral energy clearly visible. Perhaps it symbolizes that after so very long, Sigma's on his last legs. Perhaps his mind has finally worn out?
  • I used to be amused by one discrepancy in Nintendo Power's coverage of the first Mega Man X game, in which they recommended fighting Storm Eagle after Chill Penguin and using your normal buster on him, and then issued a "challenge card" claiming that beating Storm Eagle first was one of the toughest challenges. Until I realized the truth. Look carefully at Storm Eagle's techniques in battle. While his weapon weakness is the Chameleon Sting, that's not what makes him so trivial to beat early in the game. The real difference is X getting the boots from Chill Penguin's stage. Try beating Storm Eagle without a dash. That can be fairly challenging. Hint: Blowing winds + bottomless pits.
  • The art style and some character designs of Mega Man X8 were changed to make the characters look more human. This is (for now) the last game in the series... which bridges into the Mega Man Zero series, where reploids are basically indistinguishable from humans.
  • This troper finally noticed a pattern in Mega Man X: Command Mission. The game is divided into a total of ten chapters. You fight a boss at the end of each chapter. The first boss is a flunky with no real impact on the story, it's just...y'know, there. The next eight stages are the main bosses (with two battles in Chapter 9) and the final chapter is the boss rush and final bosses. In the main X series, you fight an intro boss, eight Maverick bosses, and then a boss rush leading into the final battle. While Command Mission was essentially the Ensemble Dark Horse of the series, they kept the same pattern all along.
  • I always found it strange how X would never retain his armors, especially after later games showing it was possible, but those first few armors never made a comeback. Then it occurred to me. In X1, X is almost pathetically weak compared to the Mavericks until his armor is obtained. In X2, which only happened six months after X1, the armor is gone... but X can now dash without it! And his fully charged buster shot now has a pinkish aura to it! In the third game, that aura is even MORE apparent, and in the fourth game, it's a solid green! He even gains a natural air dash in the eighth game. X's first three armors had integrated into his systems until they became a natural part of him. The only reason he keeps starting with so little health is because the Maverick Wars necessitated that weapons technology advance beyond his armor's ability to compensate. The armors were stacking this whole time!
    • Zero can also be used as evidence here. In the first game, we see nothing of Zero's power other than he's a freakishly powerful robot. He takes the arm off Vile's Ride Armor with a single level 2 blast. He then turns and tells X that he has the potential to become as powerful as he is. In X1 and X2, Zero is an enormously powerful robot. Even with all his armor upgrades in X1, X could still not damage Vile's Ride Armor. In X3, the first time Zero is playable, he is roughly as powerful as X becomes with all his armor from that game. Vile also re-appears with even MORE powerful Ride Armors, but they aren't invincible anymore, and X can still damage them with his basic buster, which now has the stacked effects from the previous two armors. In X4, Zero starts out just as weak as X does, which means that weapons technology has finally caught up to him, and he too must now rely upon life capsule upgrades and armor boosts to keep his edge in the game. It also means that by the end of X3, X had finally fulfilled Zero's prediction, and had become as strong as Zero himself.
    • It's also usable as evidence that X's own power is growing on its own. In X's original rampage down the Highway, he wasn't even able to dent Vile's Chimera Ride Armor, and yet by X8, his fully-charged X-Buster shots were breaking shields and he had become able to destroy Ride Armors with just his buster. The reason why his and Zero's life-bars were still so small by that time is that the reploids around them were being constructed with more powerful specs now that the common technology around them has caught up.
  • A bit of unintentional Fridge Brilliance in X5 with the renaming of the Mavericks to Guns N' Roses references. The person who did it just did it because her husband was a fan of the band, but seeing all the other music-themed names in the franchise...
  • When it comes to X6 we have descriptions of Blaze Heatnix and Rainy Turtloid. The former is described as being far more powerful than his coworkers and would ignore them even when they were in danger, causing others to want him powered down so he'd learn to work with others and value their lives. Gate refused and Heatnix was killed. Then we have the latter who had ridiculous defensive abilities compared to others, but he didn't do anything to bother his coworkers, it was just his defensive capabilities. They wanted him downgraded to be just like them, and when refused, Turtloid killed himself. The brilliance? The ones who wanted them dead did so out of hatred and jealousy respectively. It makes you realize just how human reploids really are when they suffer from such a petty emotion as jealousy.
  • X pulls away from the battlefield in X7, despite the resolve he showed at the end of the previous game. Also keep in mind that X salvaged Gate's remains out of respect for Alia in the chance she might revive him. Since Gate isn't even mentioned later on, it's a good bet that Alia was denied that chance, viral corruption and Freudian Excuse doesn't change the fact that Gate's actions and skill made him Too Powerful to Live, and fell into a depression. X took up a support position out of guilt, putting himself physically right next to her, to provide emotional support.
  • If Black Zero in X2 is supposed to be Zero's clone, why is it so weak and...well, black? Because it only appears if you gathered all 3 of Zero's parts. Without any of Zero's parts, the X-Hunters will have to make do with what they vaguely remember about his combat capabilities and rush its production so quick that it doesn't even get a proper paint job. This also ties to its later appearances in later games as an 'armor' for Zero where it reduces his defense. Black Zero really can't take a hit.
  • After reviewing the powers granted by X's armors, it's pretty clear that Dr. Light didn't build them in the order he gave them out. First off, the Gaea armor's helmet isn't given an in-game function while later helmets just tweaked existing abilities. Also, the dash powers as given seem out of order: dash, air-dash, air-dash/vertical air-dash, air-dash/hover, FLIGHT, pushing certain blocks, directional air-dash, gliding, and invisibility while dashing note . Additionally, early teasers for the Ultimate Armor, English translation here, say that the Ultimate Armor is supposed to have a blade weapon and flight capabilities, all of which were taken out in the actual game, hence why Dr. Light describes it as "incomplete" in X4. This suggests that some of the armors, while functional in their own right, were actually developed to beta test ideas that Dr. Light planned for the Ultimate Armor. This also suggests that most of the armors weren't developed as-is, but that Dr. Light is actually mixing different combinations of parts and adjusting the designs to match.
  • The eventual fate of Iris in X4 almost stops making sense given that Zero had his own Hunter unit back then and could've just assigned guards to her. Until you remember what Bass and King were like, and you realize that Zero also inherited his father's ego, albeit much more subtly than his siblings.
  • There are boss dialogues in X8 that suggest that Zero can no longer be powered up by the Maverick Virus, a revelation actually foreshadowed in X6. The theory is that Dr. Wily, having somehow become an AI, rebuilt Zero after X5 and pretended to be Isoc in X6, given his interest and knowledge of Zero. During the repairs, Wily removed the violent, virus-powered side of Zero's AI into a new body, which became the Nightmare Zero. Thus the Nightmare Zero became the embodiment of Zero's original potential, its destruction heralding the end of Zero's dark side. As for why Zero's AI was split, Wily likely wanted to salvage the violent side above Zero himself, so that's what got into the new body first. Or, Wily wanted to upgrade Zero, the latter starts with the double jump and a good buster, but couldn't put everything in on top of the repair job. So Wily built the Nightmare Zero to beta test the more extensive upgrades while Zero recovered, but Zero woke up and ran off before he could get his final upgrades.
    • That might also explain how his style slightly changes in the sixth game; his sword now looks more like a solid rod than a fluid, almost whip-ish beam saber, and that he swings it differently, more similar to him in the Zero series. It's also likely a conscious choice on part of the devs to connect the 2 series on a gameplay level.
  • For all of the villains' blathering about having evolved beyond the fleshy meatbag humans, they certainly haven't learned from the mistakes humans made: among other things, being free to go maverick means that you're not free to go un-maverick, not only because Sigma is a dictator in the making who wants to Take Over the World (and then descended into becoming an Omnicidal Maniac in the end) but there isn't any way to disinfect yourself from viral infection short of death.
  • Vile's hatred of X is pretty ironic, all things considered. He openly despises him for getting more attention despite his lower rank, and all but declares war on him for it, not knowing the reason he gets so much attention is because of his humanity. In a way, Vile is every bit as human as his mortal enemy. Selfish, rude, jealous, short-tempered, arrogant, violent and driven by a petty motivation, in contrast to X, who is selfless, kind, reverent, placid, humble, uses violence as a last resort and is driven to fight for justice and hope. X and Vile can be seen as representing the very best and worst of humanity, respectively.
  • In X5 Dr. Light's seemingly miraculous feat of walking out of his capsule to repair X may seem weird, but it makes sense once you realize that the event takes place in Zero Space (the final stages) where Cyberspace and the real world merged due to the intense amount of viruses at the site. It thus would allow Light to materialize himself from his capsule (presumably the one in Zero Space #3) to catch to X.
  • Colonel's moves in X4 mirror the ones Zero uses in X2 and X5note , which does many things: it enforces his role as The Rival to Zero, shows that the Repliforce designers were taking inspiration from Zero, and shows what Zero might become if he became too focused on fighting.
    • By extension, this means that Iris was based on X because of their compassionate nature. This would also mean that the project that created Iris and Colonel was trying to make a fighter that combined X and Zero's best attributes.
  • Quite a bit for Mega Man Xtreme 2:
    • Sigma returning after X3, where he was supposedly destroyed by Doppler's anti-virus, can be explained by Berkana reviving him after he somehow escaped Doppler's fortress. X and Zero's surprise at seeing him in X4 is because they expected him to stay dead after thwarting the Erasure plan.
    • Sigma tried to possess X in X3, but Sigma never attempted this again in subsequent games. Doppler's anti-virus did inflict permanent damage, and he was hoping that Berkana's experiments would reveal how to fully restore himself. He was never able to discover this himself, hence why he changed priorities.
    • The background of Xtreme 2's final stages resemble those of the Final Weapon stages, both a Call-Forward and hinting at a connection between the research lab and Repliforce. If the research facility was involved with Repliforce, than it's possible that was where Iris and Colonel were first developed before being split into siblings. This would explain why Sigma targeted Repliforce: he knew that doubt was already cast upon the army following the Erasure incident, and what Colonel's weaknesses were.
  • One of the remaining mysteries of X6 is what happened to Isoc, who fans suspect was actually Dr. Wily. Consider the following: the original Sigma's mind was absorbed into the Maverick Virus (basically killing the Maverick Hunter), Isoc's body was found after Sigma's reveal, Sigma's following plans centered around Copy Chips, and that Copy Chips are basically an extension of the Copy Robots of the Classic series. In his Viral Form, Sigma absorbed Dr. Wily to restore his mind, effectively killing his partner, but would still be subconsciously influenced by the old man until their mutual death on the moon.
  • In X4, Sigma's first form can only be harmed by fire weapons, which X and Zero obtain from Magma Dragoon. Guess like Magma Dragoon's subtly atoning for his actions from beyond the grave by giving X and Zero the means to hurt Sigma. Similarly, Sigma might have chosen to tempt Dragoon via appealing to his nature so that one of the Maverick Hunters holding his weakness to fire would no longer be a part of the Maverick Hunters anymore.
  • Zero's weakness technique against Cyber Peacock isn't Kuuenzan, but the fire-based Ryuenjin. Cyber Peacock is a virus/hacker, and one can beat viruses/hacking with a firewall.

Fridge Horror
  • It's been stated that X considers Zero his only friend. Why? Because all of the others he had made either turned Maverick (such as Volt Catfish) or were Killed Off for Real. In a deeper sense, you can even assume that these events have resigned X to not form meaningful bonds with anyone, save for the one robot who has persevered through it all so far.
  • In X4 X is worried that he'll go Maverick someday, since Repliforce turned on their own accord. Repliforce turned to protect themselves and make their own home, not to attack humanity, establishing that "Maverick" can be more broadly applied than in the last games. Jump forward to the gap before the next series where X, after having established a practical utopia as its ruler, sealed the Dark Elf and abandoned his post without appointing a successor, and in the series proper where he could've made things easier if he appeared before his minions and talked to them, but didn't so he could "rest". He indirectly put everyone in danger of getting killed at some point. He really did go Maverick after all.
  • The Repliforce think that they're doing the right thing by refusing to put down their arms and fighting for a utopia for Reploidkind, even if they supposedly don't wish to harm humanity at all in the process. Now think about the story from their perspective; more specifically, Colonel's perspective. How would anyone take being told that they, a person who's dedicated their lives to fighting against the Mavericks is under suspicion of being a maverick themselves? Worse, one who laid waste to a city they'd spent the entire time protecting? Now imagine this is coming from someone he considered a friend. Is it any wonder Colonel snapped? Is it any wonder General made the choice he did when Colonel all but confirms his fears about the humans and their potentially unfair treatment of Reploids? It gets even worse when you consider Colonel and Iris's creation was basically a rush job, with the higher-ups sending them into war not long after their births; and the fact that Colonel was supposed to have a degree of pacifism, but the tests of it failed (due to it clashing with his fighting spirit), forcing the scientists to put them (i.e the A.I programming that chooses peace) into Iris. He basically has no way of making peaceful resolutions.
    • Not to mention that X5 confirms there were survivors of Repliforce. Never mind the whole honor issue, imagine if they learned how the Maverick Hunters and the government were becoming more paranoid and violent against reploids, as bosses in later games confirm, and realized that they were the ones who set them on that path.
    • Here's another one for Repliforce: considering how heavily armed they were, and their infamous morality, you quickly realize that Sigma probably didn't need to do anything; Repliforce was a powder keg. The manual also points out that they're "potentially dangerous".
      • Especially since at least two Repliforce commanders were attacking civilian targets, specifically Storm Owl and Jet Stingray. The city Jet Stingray attacked was even described as being "decimated". So much for not wanting to harm humanity.
  • Speaking of Colonel and Iris' creation, as the manuals stated, the two was originally planned to be a single Reploid with a kind of programming close to X, i.e a powerful, honorable fighter who's at the same time compassionate and values peace. But then the result comes out as flawed and potentially dangerous to itself (the programming cannot reconcile between the two extremes), so the Reploid was then split into two, each inheriting different aspects of X. Iris later does try combining Colonel's "core" with hers, but it pretty much overclocks her body. The horrors come in the potential that X's own programming might one day eventually fail, which would be dangerous to him... or other people. This is at least shown in X7 and Command Mission, the former where X falls too far on the "pacifist" side while the latter is his most "destructive" incarnation. The original plan for Mega Man Zero was that X would discard his pacifism and concerns for his enemies after countless wars, becoming a ruthless Knight Templar that Zero has to stop; this didn't come to pass, but what did come was that X almost fell over said edge, only stopping himself once he realized it. A few of cyber elf X's comments in the games also hint at his ruthless tendencies that he tried to suppress.
  • We all knew the story from the flashback in X4: when a red maverick started causing havoc, a unit of Maverick Hunters led by Sigma was sent to stop him. Now remember that all the reploids, and thus all the hunters including Sigma, have been created thanks to Dr. Cain discovering and studying of X several years before Zero woke up and caused trouble. Had someone discovered Zero's capsule and awakened him before Dr. Cain found X, the Ax-Crazy Zero would have slaughtered every human and robot alike. And considering very few reploids can stand up to Zero, human and Mega Man (Classic) style robots would have been largely powerless to stop him.
  • According to some background details for the Mega Man Zero series, the Maverick Virus was sealed into Zero's capsule only to leak out and cause the Maverick problem, and is implied to be some form of Dr. Wily's Roboenza virus.. If this is the case, then why wasn't the virus causing problems before X was dug up? Because the robots that existed between Mega Man (Classic) and Mega Man X were too different from anything based off of Dr. Light's work to be compatible. This also means that Dr. Cain really screwed up when he decided to mass-produce Reploids because the virus that wasn't a threat was given a breeding ground.
    • Of note is that the Maverick Virus was originally intended for Zero in order to fix the problem with his A.I. that was causing him to be a mindless berserker, and it doesn't drive him nuts as is shown when Zero becomes completely infected in the bad path so much as return him briefly to his originally intended programming. It seems odd that it would cause insanity in most other reploids contrary to it's actual purpose. However, the Fridge Brilliance is Maverick Virus isn't really a "virus" so much as a software patch intended for one specific robot, it causes insanity in most other reploids because it's a program trying to patch an A.I. it was never designed for, breaking that A.I. in the process.
      • Another thing to consider is why the Maverick Virus can replicate and spread itself out. Bass, King, and Zero have a history of disobeying Wily, so by making a virus that can spread across the world, Wily is making sure that Zero can't escape his function- it's meant to not only correct his flaws, but to also enslave Zero.
  • Fridge Sadness: According to Maverick Hunter X, Dr. Light really sealed X away to fight to protect the people of the future (and because The World Is Not Ready)... and yet X only ever seems to be fighting against other reploids, i.e.: derivatives of his design. If he never let X loose on the world, so much tragedy could have been averted. The world really is not ready.
  • Look at Flame Mammoth's stage: a massive furnace made for recycling large amounts of metal... including damaged reploids, some of which are still active enough to grasp at X as the conveyor belts take them to be melted down. It might seem like just another fire level for us players, but for a reploid, this is what Fire and Brimstone Hell looks like.
  • In Storm Owl's stage, some of the ships overhead are firing lasers to slow X and Zero down. The stage takes place over a city, and your character never stops those ships- it's implied stopping Storm Owl would make them surrender. How many people are getting killed by those lasers and, if the player takes their time, how much death are X and Zero indirectly responsible for?
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Fridge/MegamanX