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Video Game / Mega Man Battle Network 1

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Mega Man Battle Network is a video game created by Capcom for the Game Boy Advance in 2001. It's the first installment in the Mega Man Battle Network series.

In the near future, everyone has a personal exploration terminal (PET) and a Net Navigator or NetNavi, an interactive AI assistant. The heroes are Lan Hikari and his Navi MegaMan.EXE. Together, they stop cyber crimes, eventually discovering a criminal syndicate named WWW (World Three).

This game completely ditches the previous Mega Man platformer gameplay and instead is an RPG. Battles are a mix of real-time and turn-based: MegaMan can move about a grid to line up attacks or dodge his opponents'. He can move and use basic MegaBuster attacks freely, while an Active Time Battle-esque timer dictates when Lan can upload Battle Chips that allow MegaMan to use special moves.

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A Japan-exclusive port, Rockman.EXE Operate Shooting Star, was later released on the Nintendo DS in 2009. Along with some quality-of-life improvements, this version features a new crossover scenario with Mega Man Star Force.


This game provides examples of:

  • Accidental Public Confession: Mr. Match accidentally reveals that the serial arson he engineered was actually all about getting the Fire Program in the Hikari oven when he consoles himself over his loss by mentioning he "completed his mission". He immediately realizes he probably shouldn't have told Lan that.
    Mr. Match: "But who cares! Soon war will start and you'll all be dead!"
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Operate Shooting Star not only includes several mechanics and interface updates from the later GBA games, but throws in some of its own to smooth gameplay.
    • The lower screen displays a minimap and gives names to the Internet areas. The aesthetics of the Internet have not changed, but it's a pretty big help for navigation and orientation.
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    • The overall random encounter rate is reduced. The ice puzzle areas of the Waterworks Comp 5 completely disable random encounters so you can focus completely on the puzzles.
    • The Power Plant Comp now highlights its invisible paths with flickering dots, and you no longer have to recharge the batteries when figuring out their configurations.
    • You now run as your default speed.
    • S-Ranking an encounter always yields a chip. Some of the best chips can now be obtained at ranks 8 or higher.
  • Disc-One Nuke: Fire Tower chips can be obtained as soon as you start the FireMan scenario, and FireMan's battle chip can be obtained shortly afterwards. They do 100 damage which is huge this early in the game, and synergize well with FireMan since they share an F chip code meaning that if you take time to fill your folder with a few of each, you can easily trounce many early-game viruses in one hit, as well as take huge chunks out of the health of many a boss. They even stay useful in the late game!
  • Early Installment Weirdness: The first Battle Network is not only an Obvious Beta, but it was still trying to figure out how to hash out the world itself. The Updated Re-release, Operate Shooting Star, removes some of them by incorporating features from later games.
    • In this game and 2, the Navi Custumizer doesn't exist, instead they have Powerups that only upgrade MegaMan's buster.
    • You can have up to 10 copies of a single chip in your folder. Your folder's Navi Chip capacity is at 10, with a cap of 5 copies of one. The caps were lowered to 5 for the next game, and further refined afterwards.
    • You don't have the *-code wildcard, making it difficult to build a monocode folder.
    • Your maximum custom screen capacity is 15. While your opening hand starts at 5, the "Add" function lets you, at the cost of fighting with no chips for a round, temporarily increase capacity by 5 for the next round. Adding a second time in a row pushes to the cap of 15, but it all resets once you stop Adding. The Add function would be reworked into a Discard and Draw mechanic with more lasting perks in the second and third game.
    • HP values for enemies were much lower in the first two games. With the Navi Customizer comes massive HP spikes for both players and enemies.
    • Enemies (especially enemy Navis) become faster as the series goes on. In the first couple of games, the flinch that enemy Navis perform when they take a heavy hit is exaggerated and they only remain in Mercy Invincibility state for a few seconds (if even that); by 4, their flinching and Mercy Invincibility lasts about as long as MegaMan's.
    • There was also a general willingness to be more sexually explicit in the early games. In the first game, you can walk in on Mayl changing clothes or discover Dex has a Porn Stash.
    • Lan is much snarkier than his later Idiot Hero selfnote , and Dex refers to GutsMan as a commercial model.
    • The main internet area looks very different than it did in later games — it's a mostly-incomprehensible maze with a few chip salesmen scattered over and no real pattern, whereas later games tended to make it much more orderly and distinct for each region. Indeed, because the first game had the same background for all parts of the Internet, it's impossible at a glance to tell the difference between the "regular" Internet and the Undernet.
    • Elemental Armors. While it may serve as the precursor to the Style Change mechanic, it functions differently; you can buy them from Net merchants, it halves all damage that isn't the armor's elemental weakness.
    • Viruses are not named during battles, and Ms. Mari calls the Mettaurs "Mettools", as in the Classic series. Viruses that never appear again in later installments have their names only mentioned in the artbook.
    • Chip Traders don't autosave, so they're vulnerable to Save Scumming.
    • Escaping battles strictly requires the Escape chip. 2 introduces the L button as an escape option (with a chance to fail) but retains the chip, while the third game onward removes the chip completely.
    • The existence of After-Combat Recovery, where MegaMan will recover all of his HP after every battle. The only exception is the Power Plant dungeon where it is a gimmick.
    • Most of the mystery data you find on the net draw randomly from their possible reward pool, regardless of color. You can even save-scum those rewards without needing to jack out and in again. Only a few instances are once-only rewards with fixed locations and yield. The second game onwards standardizes the behavior of each color of mystery data.
  • Establishing Series Moment: MegaMan's attempt to pass through the oven's cyber-world is impeded by a field of flames. Lan clears the way for him by spraying the real oven in his house (which is also on fire) with a super-soaker. This works.
  • Foreshadowing: As soon as you can use the Metro, you're prompted to pay Yuichiro Hikari a visit at work. He's not in, but while you're at the office you can find a photo of his family revealing that Lan is not an only child, and talk to some Navis in the large workstation who tell you about an experimental Navi with human genetic data.
  • Guide Dang It!: Locating the Undernet memos near the end of the game. The first one is easy enough to find, but the only hint you're given on the other two is that you need to find "a young beautiful lady and an old man". Never mind how vague this is, the lady is in a school in Dentown that you probably didn't know existed until this quest. To rub salt in the wounds, once you've found her, she won't give you the memo unless you've filled out enough of the Library. Hope you've been diligent on S-ranking battles! These memos are needed to progress in the story, too.
  • Late for School: He's late on the second in-game visit to school, and has to sneak into his classroom. He takes the back door, and sneaks to his front-row seat. The class only has nine seats, meaning his absence would be easier to notice.
  • Mercy Kill: The altered Programs in the first game's Power Plant dungeon have been irrevocably ruined by the WWW, some driven crazy, all turned into viruses. There's no way to save them from this, and so one of the sane programs asks Mega to kill them.
  • Mythology Gag: Aside from a few Canon Foreigner, the WWW Navis are counterparts to four of the original Mega Man Robot Masters (a fifth is also introduced in this game, as a supporting character, Guts Man). The only one missing in the lineup is Cut Man.
  • No Endor Holocaust: An attack on the city driving system causes a series of wickedly violent car crashes. Beyond the spectacle of the crash itself, the game studiously ignores what should rightfully be devastating wreckage and a huge death toll.
  • No Fair Cheating: Hacking will cause an impassible stream of water to bar Mega's entrance to the Waterworks dungeon, requiring a total reset of the game.
  • Obfuscating Insanity: There's an old man NPC who spends most of the game telling you he's not senile. He's the one who knows how to access the Undernet.
  • Off-Model: Operate Shooting Star has its fair share of obviously rushed mugshots; which is bad considering the sixth game (which was released before it) has clearly shown that the mugshots can look pretty and on-model.
  • Perfect-Play A.I.: Invoked with ProtoMan. Official NetNavis can carry their own Battle Chips and battle without Operator input; according to ProtoMan, solo-fighting was his standard operating procedure, which fact combines with his "untouchable" reputation to form this trope.
  • Sequel Hook: The end reveals that Wily is still alive in the credits.
  • Sequential Boss: During the ElecMan Scenario, Chaud and ProtoMan finally break through the system protection and appear in the power plant computer where Lan and MegaMan fought ElecMan. They reveal that they intended to lure Zap in so they could defeat ElecMan and secure the WWW Server data, but MegaMan and Lan (the amateurs) thrashed him so thoroughly there was no useful data left over. Chaud gets fed up and orders ProtoMan to delete MegaMan.note 
  • Space-Filling Path: While present to some degree throughout most of the game, the main internet is a particularly dramatic example, filled to bursting with loops, dead ends, and paths that twist and turn constantly. This is all made worse by how the paths all look more or less the same, combining with the isometric perspective and small field of view to make it very frustrating to tell where you are and where you're going. Prepare to spend a lot of time wandering aimlessly before stumbling across your destination.
  • Take That, Audience!: An NPC Navi, located at the farthest reaches of the internet (which requires an extent of completion to reach) expresses this:
    "So you've made it this far...It's a shame you're wasted on the outside world..."
  • Understatement: Wily drops this line while brainwashing an entire classroom of children.
    "To reach our goals, the WWW is hiring new staff members!"
  • Useless Useful Spell: The "Add" function in this game lets you forgo using chips for the next turn in exchange for 5 extra chips in your Custom Screen for the next turn only. You can Add a second time in a row to expand the total hand capacity to 15 chips, but you go back to 5 the moment you stop using the Add function. While there are some situations where an individual use of Add can help with searching for a desired chip combo, there is almost nothing that would justify fighting two turns in a row without any chips. Operate Shooting Star keeps the Add function unmodified, but gets rid of the superfluous third row of the Custom Screen.

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