- The entire concept of X. When Mega Man X debuted, speculative fiction tended to hold a rather bleak look at the future, often portraying the complete resetting of society or the near annihilation of the human race. Take, for example, The Terminator, RoboCop (1987), Blade Runner, Demolition Man, and any novel written by William Gibson. Most exceptions were largely aimed at a younger audience, such as the Classic era of Mega Man. Mega Man X came along and was both idealistic and mature. Generally speaking, he stood for good, and stood up for his ideals even as the world around him made it harder to do so. X is essentially the Anti-Terminator, being a bleeding-edge robot of amazing power and potential, yet his self-chosen heroics help demonstrate the best of what mankind can create, and he helped signal a new wave of futuristic sci fi.
- The fight with Storm Eagle in Mega Man X1 deserves a special mention. Before the fight begins, X hitches a ride on Eagle's Cool Airship, the Death Rogumer, which starts to rapidly ascend. X blasts off the forward guns, climbs underneath the ship and sneaks into the ship itself. A few seconds later, the top half of the airship explodes, prompting Storm Eagle to arrive. When you defeat Eagle, the crippled ship starts falling down towards the Power Plant Stage.
- Mega Man: Maverick Hunter X dispenses with X crippling the airship prior to the boss fight, but makes up for it with Storm Eagle having one of the more awesome boss banters in the game.
- Taking on the boss redux fights with the Hadouken. The Mavericks come in ready to rumble, and X's response is basically "You know what? Screw you." Fireball Death'd!
- Two in the intro stage of Mega Man X2. The first being the well-known Heroic Sacrifice of Green Biker Dude. Second during the boss fight with a Humongous Mecha several times the size of X...and X winning.
- Day of Sigma begins with a confrontation with a berzerk Mechaniloid. Mechaniloids in this universe are all-but-indestructible Humongous Mecha typically used in large-scale construction. X is given the job of delivering the first punch. He does it by jumping out of a chopper thousands of feet in the air and firing a fully charged X-Buster shot in free-fall. Not only does the shot land a direct hit on the Mechaniloid, it slams the Mechaniloid into the ground and buries it under what's left of the building it was occupying. What's more impressive is X accomplished this at his most basic level.
- It's well-established at this point that Inafune during the creation of the X series was somewhat embittered at Capcom for not letting him use the Zero design as the main character, so he would gradually hijack the plot from the series protagonist for the sake of the character he thought was cooler. This later had something of a change of heart, as the attempted reboot in the form of Maverick Hunter X clearly gave X greater establishment as being special beyond merely being the protagonist, and the crux of Sigma's rebellion. Now, what makes this awesome? Years later after the failed launch, the X Legacy Collection, even though it didn't include the game itself, included the Day of Sigma prologue as the official prequel OVA to the X series anyway. The greater retold origin, and by extension X's developed character arc, has been Vindicated by History!
- After a Hopeless Boss Fight with Vile and his Humongous Mecha, he grabs X and picks him up... and then you hear the sound of a blaster charging. A blast fires from offscreen, blows the arm of Vile's suit clean off, and Zero dashes up to you, coolness well established.
- Later on, it gets reversed. Vile and X tangle again. X loses again. Zero saves him again, but in doing so sacrifices himself to destroy Vile's Ride Armor. This fills X with a righteous fury and makes him uber-pissed off. Bye, Vile.
- Zero does it again in X3, against the rebellious Mac; this time, he temporarily becomes a playable character.
- The conversations between X and Sigma on the last stage of the first game. Made better by the voice acting in Maverick Hunter X. X's Unstoppable Rage at the death of Zero and his subsequent words make it that much more personal when he beats Sigma.Sigma: It's not over yet, X! The battle! The angst! The destruction! I will show you the true potential of Reploids!
X: I'll finish this. Right here, right now! I WILL DEFEAT YOU, SIGMA!
- What's even better is that this makes X's character arc, started from the Day of Sigma OVA, complete. Everyone's been telling him that he can't hesitate to pull the trigger when there's a threat that needs to be dealt with, but X has been grappling with indecisiveness and his own innate desire for peace. It's not until he loses his friend that he realizes what his hesitancy has cost, and that he absolutely needs to stop Sigma. The fact that he wants to is just icing on the cake.
- It's pretty badass how in X3, X has grown powerful enough to nonchalantly blow apart Vile's new, improved Ride Armor and then blow up Vile himself, especially after the latter's "Hahaha, I have caught you in my trap, you can't escape!" speech.
- In X2... Sigma confronts X at the final stage with a black Zero, only for it to be easily destroyed by the real Zero, just Back from the Dead.Zero: Sigma, you should have studied the blueprints closer. There is only one Zero!
- The cutscene after the Final Battle in Mega Man X5: X and Zero, the latter dying and half his body destroyed, were impaled by a decapitated Sigma's Mouth Beam. Zero proceeds to destroy Sigma with one last Z-buster shot. What makes the moment awesome? The spoiler tags tell it all.Zero: How persistent...you are...Die...Sigma...
- In Mega Man X8, the final boss is giving a "We're Not So Different" speech, which has X and Zero gritting their teeth as they realize he might be right...until Axl says "screw it" and opens fire, telling him to buzz off, quickly snapping both X and Zero out of the brief Heroic BSoD. Though he was already absolved from The Scrappy status for some time, this moment showed just how awesome he'd become.
- Axl has another one, believe it or not, in the ending of Mega Man X7. Sigma, barely standing after being defeated, punches Axl through a wall, incapacitating the latter. Before X or Zero could move, Red appears and attacks them. Sigma, seeing his chance, attempts to possess Red when the latter came closer to him. However, Red, who was actually Axl in disguise, shoots him at point-blank range while his back was turned, and the single shot was enough to blast Sigma through a wall himself, and send him plummeting to the ground.
- X's Badass Boast at the end of Mega Man X6, in which he claims that he has better things to do than fight Sigma over and over, but if he returns, X will defeat him for good. Granted, he spends most of the next game whining and Axl takes center stage, but it's still possible for X to get out of his stupor just in time for Sigma's inevitable reveal as The Man Behind the Man, meaning X will stay true to his word.
- On that note, despite X's flanderization in X7, his return ends up being one of the most badass moments in the franchise. Zero and Axl are making good progress, but Alia and Signas fear that it won't be enough. It's at that moment where X gets out of his whiny phase and gets right back into the action, Charge Shot and everything. It's also at this point where the main duo of the series evolves into a Power Trio.
- Throughout the Day of Sigma OVA, X is reluctant to use violence when fellow Reploids are at risk. But after being forced to watch Sigma attack Zero and launch missiles on their own city, he snaps, screams with righteous fury, and claws at Sigma's eyes with a Shining Finger, permanently scarring him. And this is after he was impaled on Sigma's sword.
- People like to make G-Gundam jokes because X is voiced by Dommon's English voice actor, but something that doesn't get noticed as much is that Sigma has the same English voice actor as Master Asia.
- Let's not forget that the opening scene involves dropping X out of a Bee Blader several thousand feet in the air, all so that he can have as much time as possible to super-charge a shot without being interrupted. This shot is then released with great force into the rampaging mechaniloid below X, who then calmly lets off a small shot sideways to divert his momentum and land safely. It winds up not stopping the mechaniloid or even slowing it down, but it's still cool.
- (Hard Mode) In the final level of X8, Vile, in a last-ditch attempt, attacks one of the characters after his Boss Battle, separating the two heroes, forcing the other character to traverse the rest of the final level alone. When fighting Sigma, the latter grabs the character in an inescapable vicegrip. Just when all hope is lost, the other hero arrives (the camera is even in first-person perspective of the Big Damn Hero as he closes in on Sigma and his partner!) and saves his partner, and the Boss Battle resumes.
- In one of X6's endings, Zero openly claims that the world is in good (X's) hands, and that X will always be the better hero between the two of them. This is quite impressive, since Zero doesn't even think of himself as a hero. A humble badass.
- In the intro to X6, they show Zero's crash into the falling Eurasia colony in X5. That interpretation of the event was even better than how they showed it in the original. In fact, the original (X5) didn't even show the crash!
- X6 (especially if you don't unlock Zero) was one long Crowing Moment Of Awesome for X. Honestly, continuing with this characterization would have made the remainder of the X series much more tolerable. And Axl probably would be much better favored if (assuming Zero was kept dead) X now needed to take Axl under his wing, like Zero did when X was a rookie. It'd bring the whole thing full-circle rather nicely, and would set up the X of the Zero series much better.
- From the flashback of Sigma and Zero from X4, Sigma (The Hero at that time) is fighting the Maverick Zero. This is a CMOA for Sigma at first, as he gains the upper hand. But then Zero quickly turns the tables by breaking Sigma's arm off with his own. Before that, he also tries to fight Sigma, who holds a lightsaber, WITH A GODDAMN PIPE!!!
- One for Reploids in general: in the opening of X6, it's established that earth was so polluted that humans had to live underground, and Reploids could barely work. While this plot point is dropped in future games, in-universe it means that Reploids cleaned up the earth within a year of the events of X5!
- One for X by way of RetCon: With the debut of Megaman 11, Rock is the first of Dr. Light's robots to use the Double Charge Shot. However, for Rock it's a potentially dangerous move, since he's over charging his buster with the Double Gear system: he can't handle the recoil and he has to fire both shots. X on the other hand can handle the move just fine, even hold the second shot in reserve.
- A villainous one in X8: The moment Lumine reveals he has pulled one over on Sigma.
- A meta example: the Mega Man X Legacy Collections include all of the main series X games, which is good by itself. What's more subtly awesome is that Capcom is including X7, unanimously considered the worst in the series and the game that single-handedly killed its own franchise, within the package. A lesser company would have swept that game under the rug and pretend it never happened, making it into "Mega Man X Legacy Collection Minus That One Game". And yet here Capcom is, owning up to their mistake and allowing others to play a game that so many others have riffed on. With this and Mega Man 11 on the horizon, it seems they're finally finding their footing again, at least with their Blue Bombers.
- Also in the Legacy Collection, this time within the X Challenge mode. Completing Stage 9 on Hard difficulty will restore all your extra lives, health and weapon energy and unlock a secret final battle which you are immediately thrown into. The instant you hear the announcer say the words Ultimate Armor X and Awakened Zero, you know you're gonna be in for a tough fight. It even completely revamps both X and Zero's movesets, including X changing into ALL of his Armors from both X5 and X6. Lastly, it even has its own short cutscene when you enter the fight!X and Zero have been the downfall of legions of ultra-powerful Mavericks. Now discover what it's like to be on the receiving end of the ultimate team-up!
- Zero being an Assist Trophy in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Think about that: all of the other Mega Men plus Proto Man and Bass appear in the classic one's Final Smash, yet Zero is the only heroic character in the series to be a part of the actual gameplay. And he fittingly attacks with his iconic Beam Saber.
Awesome / Mega Man X