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Video Game / Mega Man Battle Network 3: White and Blue

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Mega Man Battle Network 3 is a video game created by Capcom for the Game Boy Advance in 2003. It's the third installment in the Mega Man Battle Network series. It was originally released as a stand alone game in Japan, until an Updated Re-release was made (called Black), which featured different exclusive chips, bosses, and bugfixes. The original and Black were both localized as White and Blue respectively for international releases.

Sometime after the previous game, Dr. Wily reforms the WWW organisation and seeks to release Alpha, an evil prototype version of the internet. But he needs to find TetraCodes (passwords) to accomplish that. Lan and MegaMan.EXE take part in the N1 Grand Prix and eventually stop him.

This game provides examples of:

  • Adult Fear:
    • BubbleMan effectively takes an entire country hostage through explosives that people have been tricked into installing into their own homes. When he loses, he refuses to deactivate the explosives and is on the brink of carrying out mass-murder when ProtoMan slays him outright. Chaud then gives Lan a dressing-down for hesitating when so many lives are on the line.
    • Mamoru nearly dying as a result of complications when the hospital equipment fails during a malware attack. Imagine how helpless you must feel when you're an accomplished Netbattler and your new friend is dying as a result of a problem you can't fix by simple application of NetNavi abilities. Imagine how you must feel when said new friend is dying the same way your late brother did.
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    • Mr. Match tricks Lan into personally installing the malware used to commit arson against a government institution and every smart device in the country, endangering his father's life and the lives of countless others. Also, though the game largely glosses over it, those Progs that had the malware installed into them all died from spontaneous combustion.
    • There are multiple scenarios in the game in which Lan and MegaMan spend time completely cut off from one another, during which Mega is completely helpless.
  • Artificial Brilliance: The Navis in this game are smart.
    • KingMan will use "Plan B" to change the layout of his chess pieces depending on how you're fighting. If you keep breaking his pieces, he'll summon a Rook to defend himself with very high HP; if you stay in the back row out of range of his Pawns, he'll Area Grab you and move the pawns forward a column; if you use wind chips to push the Pawns back or trick his Knight into jumping into a hole, he'll swap out one of the Pawns for a second Knight. He'll also keep respawn his Knights if you keep using the hole trick.
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    • GutsMan will smash your area twice to lock you into one panel, then just stay in the same row as you and start throwing Rocket Punch attacks now that you can't dodge. He'll also counter your Area Grab by Area Grabbing you right back.
    • BubbleMan, true to his Dirty Coward tendencies, employs a rock and a constant stream of bubbles from his middle panel to block your attacks on him. Then when weak he'll start using a barrier for further defense.
  • The Bus Came Back: When Lan visits his dad Yuichirou, who should he find there but Sean, a kid who first appeared on the plane in Battle Network 2? Sean relates that he is working hard as The Atoner, working hard to use his skills to make the world a better place after he nearly destroyed it as the leader of Gospel.
  • Chekhov's Boomerang: Lan's PET gets a case upgrade early on, making it more durable. This comes in handy at least twice in the same game: first, he throws it at someone as a distraction, and not only is it effective, but Mega Man isn't affected at all by it, and later, Lan jumps in the ocean with the PET, which doesn't take water damage in the process. There are a few times the PET is treated a bit roughly in the next game, but it seems to weather those just fine except when someone is aiming to cause damage.
  • Chekhov's Gun: There's a mysterious artifact in plain view but out of reach at Scilab's cyberworld. That's Alpha, the final boss of the game.
  • Cutscene Power to the Max: Bass kicks a lot of butt in cutscenes, No Selling the Giga-Freeze and hurling EarthBreaker techniques that can destroy a DarkAura (which, given the Power Levels of the attack and the aura, should be utterly impossible).
  • Denser and Wackier: Zigzagged. This game balances the exaggerated characters of the first game and sillier elements from the anime with the more realistic terrorism of the second and the fact that the attacks are increasingly personal—threatening Lan's school building, Lan's classmates, Lan's friends, and Lan's family.
  • Disc-One Nuke: With a good busting level and a bit of luck, it's possible to obtain a Cannon C in ACDC area on your first visit, giving you the chips to do the Z-Cannon Program Advance before the first boss.
  • Disney Death: MegaMan is absorbed into Alpha after the final battle and, after a sad farewell speech, ejects Lan out. After the credits roll, however, it is revealed Yuichiro managed to get his son out of that mess after all.
  • Dressing as the Enemy: Downplayed. The "Black Mind" program allows Mega Man to generate an "evil aura" (i.e. the impression that he's a thug), which he needs to convince Undernet denizens that he's one of them. (A similar idea would occur in Network Transmission, where he needs to cop an attitude to convince the guard he's tough enough to get into the Undernet).
  • Eat the Summoner: In the finale, Lord Wily's consciousness (he pulled a Brain Uploading earlier) is consumed by the Psycho Prototype Internet that he awakened and unleashed on NetSociety, Alpha.
  • Foreshadowing: You frequently run past a water heater in the cyberworld, which is apparently connected to the "natural" hot spring behind the hotel at the zoo, heavily suggesting that it's a sham. Not only is that true, it's actually a cover for the Undernet's servers.
  • Guide Dang It!: Though the series as a whole expresses this trope to varying extents, Battle Network 3 is most unkind to players without a guide.
    • As the pioneer of the Navi Customizer system, Battle Network 3 has a lot of hidden information regarding its systems, especially when the ModTools come into play. Compression codes can reduce the size of your programs to make them fit better. You'll need to use error codes to force the Navi Customizer to work with a colored part that MegaMan's style isn't compatible with. And when the Customizer reports no issues, you get the opportunity to input a code to grant an additional boon on top of that (with some side effects for some codes). The game's BBS posts can clue the player in to some Error Codes or Extra Codes, but for everything else not elaborated in the game, it's located either in the manual, hidden in side material, etc.
    • Several chips have additional requirements to obtain. Several Standard chips require you to S-Rank viruses in record time while using Custom Style. V4 Navi Chips can only be obtained if you S-Rank bosses under 20 seconds while using Team Style. You're not told about these until you've obtained and chose to keep these Styles yourself, and if you currently lack either when you need to complete a library, it's back to grinding Styles until you get the right one.
    • The elemental Mega Chips will outright refuse to work unless you're in a Style with the matching element; Heat Style for Salamander, Aqua Style for Waterline, etc. The game never explicitly tells you this.
    • V3 Navi encounters are located in places unrelated to where you found their V2 selves, so either take the guide or scour around the net blind. BubbleMan and DarkMan V3 only appear as a random encounter if you fulfill an additional unmentioned condition. BubbleMan only shows up if you're at low health, and DarkMan only appears if you have a bug in your Navicust.
    • The "Legendary Tomes" sidequest operates like a standard Fetch Quest with a neat reward at the end, but if you follow the hints you're given during the sidequest you can claim the treasure for yourself (which is an enormous amount of money). However, deciphering the tomes only gets you a series of blocks that don't make sense. Turns out whatever they're spelling is still in Japanese so it's difficult to work out the final step towards the treasure. And if you turn the quest in before reaping the treasure you won't get to claim it for yourself.
    • Thought there's no more content after beating the Time Trials? Return to the title screen, ensure you have five stars note , and input a code which crams these stars together. You've now unlocked the Omega Navis, which are the game's bosses tuned up to another difficulty rank, but you have no in-game clue as to where they are. Beating them and listing that last Program Advance (which is only possible after unlocking the Omega Navis) unlocks the True Final Boss before you can really consider 100% Completion for this game.
  • Hard Work Hardly Works: Zigzagged. After the N1 Grand Prix, Tora reveals that he's discovered the secret to Chaud's strength is ten hours of training daily. While this seems to justify what makes Chaud The Ace, it sure as heck never stopped Lan from trouncing him in an actual fight in the first two games. At the same time, this game deliberately saves fights with Chaud and ProtoMan for the postgame, and and they're at their toughest yet.
  • Heroic BSoD: Lan gets a nasty case of it after discovering that Mr. Match tricked him into firebombing Sci Lab, endangering his own father's life. He locks himself up for several days, skips school, and refuses to talk to his friends about anything.
  • Hero on Hiatus: After the FlashMan incident, MegaMan begins to glitch and eventually has to be put in a Sub-PET with limited functionality while Lan's dad repairs the main PET, and the limited functionality includes inability to jack into the net. The glitches have no significant impact on gameplay and the repairs are done overnight with no significant plot events happening while MegaMan is out of action.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight: The first battle with Bass. Unlike normal battles, his aura can't be dispelled in this fight and thus he's invincible, and you just have to let him beat you and get some dodging practice in the meantime.
  • Horrible Judge of Character: SciLab hires Mr. Match and lets him walk around the building and access all their computers without question. Match, who was a member of WWW in the first game, and it's public knowledge by this point that WWW has resurfaced and is attacking the internet in various areas. No prizes for guessing what ends up happening.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: The tanks. Lan manages to dodge machinegun fire by simply dancing back and forth.
  • Infinity +1 Sword:
    • The premiere Giga Chips of the game, Navi Recycle and especially Folder Back, which let you reuse other battle chips in different ways. Navi Recycle reloads the last Navi Chip used, complete with all attack modifiers it had when you first used it, for a free do-over. Folder Back restores every used chip in your folder, including itself, giving the player endless do-over potential—in the hands of an even mildly competent player, either chip will break the whole game.
    • When it comes to Navicust programs, nothing beats the HubBatch. Accessible only in the Bonus Dungeon and hidden behind a grueling 20-round battle, the humble 3x3 program carries the features of at least eight different programs at once. It requires an Error Code to even run and has a bug that halves your maximum HP attached, but lowered maximum HP is a small cost for this much efficiency.
  • Informed Attribute: The end-game reveals technology allowing humans to transmit brainwaves into the cyber world as an avatar, and then "Full Synchro", which lets that digital avatar merge with their Navi to improve operational efficiency. In practice this justifies using the second version of previous bosses for the Boss Rush, but for all the hype it doesn't really do much—Navi ghosts automatically default to the second version, BubbleMan has no Operators and reached his second version, and the rebuilt boss holding Rank 8 jumped right to the third, even without Full Synchro. Further, Lan and MegaMan use Full Synchro with no change in gameplay. The later games would make Full Synchro a game mechanic, without bothering to explain how it's even possible.
  • Insurmountable Waist-High Fence: The bath in the Ura Inn has a small pile of buckets that block you from getting to the rock pile in the back of the area. These buckets are finally removed in the late game to reveal the rock pile is concealing an elevator leading to the server for the Undernet.
  • Lame Pun Reaction: There is a recycle canister with a kangaroo shape. In game text? "(used for recycling cans) maybe we should call it the CANgaroo? ... We apologize for that last joke. It wasn't punny at all." The game apologizes for a pun, even if it is making another pun in the process.
  • Law of Conservation of Detail: That random guy with the green coat and glasses who inexplicably keeps appearing? He has a unique sprite, so you know he's someone important. He's Dr. Cossack, the creator of Bass.
  • Littlest Cancer Patient: Mamoru, complete with Incurable Cough of Death, who suffers from a heart condition that killed MegaMan back when he was Hub Hikari. He's also the operator of Serenade and owner of the Undernet.
  • Loophole Abuse: Three Navis in the game will let you play a game of chance to win Zenny, but after beating them four rounds in a row they complain you've bankrupted them and they'll never play you again. But if you quit after three wins, you keep your money you won so far and they'll play you again no problem; you can do this over and over to farm money, as long as you don't proceed to the fourth round.
  • Lost in Translation: The Rank 7 Navi tells you to get "one of many birds" so that you can get his rank. You'd think that you'll have to visit Yoka Zoo to find the answer, but the actual answer is in the Hospital, where you collect an origami crane from a senbazuru hanging on a wall. Those from outside Japan won't have an idea what that object is, let alone why it would be at a hospital.For the curious 
  • Luck-Based Mission: There are a handful of shady Normal Navis loitering around Squares that will challenge you to a gambling game, in which Mega has a 1-in-2, 1-in-3, or 1-in-4 chance of doubling his bets. It is technically possible to clean these three Navis out entirely, but the chances are remarkably low (if you're using an emulator with save states, on the other hand, it becomes ridiculously easy). This is one Gold Saucer most people aren't Sidetracked By.
  • Morton's Fork: Boss battles with KingMan have a Knight that keeps trying to jump on top of you and two Pawns who will use Longsword attacks and move up and down his front column to block your attacks. If you try to stay out of range of the Pawns, eventually he'll Area Grab you and the Pawns move in, giving you no room to avoid them. If you try destroying the Pawns with breaking attacks, eventually KingMan will use "Plan B", swapping out the Pawns for a Rook that moves to shield him and has much higher HP than the Pawns, and he'll summon a second Knight so you have to avoid two of them now. Either way, the fight just went From Bad to Worse.
  • Mundane Utility: Lan's PET is an amazing piece of tech that has saved lives and deleted countless viruses and evil Navis. And, as Sunayama finds out the hard way, makes for an excellent physical projectile.
  • No-Gear Level: Early on, Megaman's transmission program (the program that keeps the connection between him and Lan's PET) breaks, having been damaged by Flashman's Shining Browser Crasher. This removes Megaman's ability to jack out, making it necessary for him to run back to the jack-in point to get back into the PET. It also removes the possibility for Lan to send Battle Chip data to Megaman, leaving him with his Mega Buster to defend himself. Thankfully, this happens in ACDC Area, with comparatively weak random encounters. That is, unless Megaman manages to run into Flashman V3.
  • Only the Chosen May Wield: S grants Megaman the Giga Freeze, a last-resort option that is capable of halting Alpha's functions before it spreads across the Net. However, only a few select Navis can use it effectively — anyone else deemed unworthy will be frozen in place for eternity. Naturally, Megaman proves to be one of the few who can. The other is Bass, who catches it with his bare hands when Mega tries to use it on him.
  • Peer Pressure Makes You Evil: The game's Hero of ACDC story arc hits a homerun telling about the dangers of peer pressure and social engineering, as Mr. Match successfully deceives and pressures Lan into assisting him in his plan to cause a fire in a research lab while he steals vital data.
  • Puzzle Boss: Battle Network 3 is obsessed with these.
    • The earliest one is BubbleMan, who constantly hides in the back row, where he's protected by a boulder on the top lane and perpetually-respawning bubbles from a hole in the middle of his area. Figuring out how to damage him is a key element of this fight: the player must either use attacks that explicitly target the back row, hit the entire field, or leverage the boulder protection against BubbleMan. And then when he gets to low HP he Turns Red and gains a regenerating shield that will absorb one attack before he takes damage, forcing the player to figure out a way to bypass that.
    • KingMan also hides in the back row, assaulting the player with summoned objects rather than fighting directly. His pawns shield him from attacks and his knight constantly tries to stomp the player; destroying his pieces causes him to change tactics to use a more aggressive strategy with two knights stomping the player and a rook that follows him and blocks the player's attacks.
    • DesertMan is similar: he spawns randomly on his side of the field, only taking a single hit from attacks before being blown away and reforming in another part of the area. His hands have low HP but shoot down the row to attack MegaMan, and two pillars appear whenever he reforms that can absorb attacks. But his sandy body can be stunned in a unique way (aqua attacks turn him to mud), and his desert panel area can be taken advantage of using wind element attacks to boost their power.
    • MistMan constantly guards his weak spot (the lamp) using his genie body, and summons clouds of mist to harass the player and prevent them from moving.
    • DrillMan is also constantly guarding his weak spot using his head-mounted drill, forcing players to figure out a way to safely destroy or bypass it while he's flying horizontally, or to slowly chip down at him while he uses his other attacks.
    • Bass is constantly protected by an Aura that only disappears when he recieves enough damage in a single hit. Players must either figure out a good way to destroy it before piling on as much damage to him as possible before he can regenerate it, or figure out Aura's mechanics and damage that can ignore it (ex. poison). Harder versions of his fight use an even stronger version of aura.
    • The postgame boss Serenade will dodge all attacks by moving onto a different panel (even dodging timestopping attacks), countering with a sonic boom after. The player must learn to either limit their movement somehow (breaking panels), use a truly undodgeable attack (poison, again), or learn that they are vulnerable when doing their frontal attack (the shockwave of which blocks damage, presenting a new problem).
  • Space Whale Aesop: After the Hospital Incident, a lot of NPCs get cagey about mixing science and nature. Gamers beware, don't connect computers to trees or malicious users will unleash Gaia's Vengeance.
  • Stupidity Is the Only Option: The FlameMan scenario requires Lan and MegaMan to help a "reformed" villain engage in an openly dubious procedure to "upgrade" SciLab software, even after MegaMan identifies the Manipulative Bastard tactic the character uses to convince Lan to comply. No option is given to alert SciLab personnel about any of this.
  • Taunting the Unconscious: Following the Hopeless Boss Fight against Bass, the villain taunts the unconscious hero, expressing how disappointed he is that MegaMan was unable to provide him with a proper challenge, and declares that he deserves to be deleted.
  • This Looks Like a Job for Aquaman: In the lobby of the DNN building, a man will give you your first "glitched" Navi program, Break Charge, which causes charged shots to break objects. This is shortly before you go into the studio and fight Tora and KingMan, who prominently utilize chess pieces that are invulnerable to normal attacks, and you've already had to face him once before so you know this is going to be a problem.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Chaud is revealed to be under a lot of stress trying to gain the approval of his father, who is enough of a jerk that Chaud is surprised to get invited to eat at the same table as him by the end.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: During the final chapters of the game, a mysterious Official-style NetNavi appears several times and alludes to connections between SciLab, Bass, and Alpha. While these connections are later elaborated on, the Navi itself vanishes from the story after confronting Bass with a Dark Aura.
  • You Are Not Alone: During the epilog, Lan spends some time grieving in solitude about events. After MegaMan is lost during the escape from the WWW base, Lan puts on a strong front when giving the news to his parents but then wanders off to cry on his lonesome. Sean and all of his friends give Lan a rousing speech and help him move on.