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Video Game / Rockman ZX Prequel

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Rockman ZX Prequel is a Mega Man ZX fangame created by the Chinese group Rockman Lab, set between the events of the Mega Man Zero and Mega Man ZX series. Unlike the ZX series, there are only two playable Biometals. Like Mega Man X4, players can choose between two characters, Nett and Elf. Nett uses Model X, while Elf uses Model Z. Both players can obtain EX skills after defeating bosses. Nett can change the property of his second charge shot while Elf can use special commands to perform various techniques.

The game may be downloaded here.

A sequel to the prequel, Rockman ZX Zeta, is in the works. It focuses on Girouette and a new character, Cynthia, who meet and gain Biometal Model Z. The Biometal acts as the base for Double Megamerge forms, rather than in ZX, which has Model X as the base. Hyperion and Erebus also return as major antagonists. Plans for a complete release once development ends extend to 2022.

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This game provides examples of:

  • Amnesiac Hero: Elf wakes up in the beginning of the game without any memory.
  • Armor-Piercing Attack: Like in Mega Man X8, several enemies and bosses can project shields to protect themselves. Nett can break the shields with a fully-charged shot; Elf can break the shields with a fully-charged saber slash or a Three-Strike Combo. A certain EX skill can break shields instantly.
  • An Axe to Grind: Hyperion battles with a massive axe that can deliver major damage. It is based on the Axeloid from Mega Man Zero 4.
  • Big Damn Heroes: After a barely alive Virel impales Nett and cleaves Elf in half, Mother Elf appears and finally erases the last traces of Virel. Sadly, she cannot save either protagonist from dying but shows them how to survive by returning to the source of their creation at the cost of being forgotten by everyone. At least, until 10 years pass, that is. By then, both protagonists have fully recovered and return to the real world.
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  • Big Damn Kiss: Elf gives Nett a kiss on the lips after defeating the final boss.
  • "Blind Idiot" Translation: The English translation is fairly bad. It is full of awkward dialogues, typos, and grammatical errors. At the very least, it's understandable, and anyone with a working knowledge of the Mega Man Zero and Mega Man ZX series (which isn't unreasonable, as that's this game's target audience) can read between the lines and fill in for themselves what the game is trying to say. Generally speaking, the dialog at least doesn't suffer too heavily from this trope. The only major offense is that sometimes, the dialogue text leaks outside the dialogue box. There are also very bland or odd names for some of the Mavericks fought, like Tortoise, Phoenix, Ellis, and a blue hedgehog named Sonic.
  • Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: While not to the extent of Zero and Ciel, Nett has this dynamic with Prairie and Elf. Nett is an angsty boy with a dark past in contrast with the kind and patient Prairie and the naive and innocent Elf.
  • Call-Forward: In The Stinger post-credits, the Mega Men (and woman) note four new players of the Game of Destiny being molded into warriors are nearing completion and that a spare body (Grey) is being kept in stasis for Master Albert, a nudge toward Mega Man ZX Advent. The True Ending also shows Giro and Vent or Aile about to begin a job for Giro Express, hearkening back to the opening scene of Mega Man ZX.
  • Cataclysm Backstory: Ten years ago, a virus named Le Bonheur (French for "happiness") wrought havoc on the world by causing a huge Maverick outbreak, in an event that would become known as the Black Terror. It was also the precursor to Spectre, and created by Virel.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Elf is a little angry when she hears that Prairie takes "extra care" for Nett.
  • Colony Drop: Midway into the game, a fleet of ships enters Darkspace to travel unnoticed in the real world, then the lead aircraft dives back into the real world and smashes into the World Government Forces HQ, completely destroying it.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • When Elf gets her first EX skill, she's confused by the process. As all Models have certain abilities specific to them, Model Z explains his as the Learning ability, where he can learn the skills of the bosses he fights and impart them as EX skills to Elf. This was introduced way back in Mega Man Zero 2, where Zero could get the EX skills of bosses he fought at a high enough rank. Back then, Cerveau even called it a learning ability. Seems it was such a major part of Zero that he kept it as a Model!
    • The Legendary Pickaxe Kidd uses to excavate the rest of the furthest back building in the Hunter Camp from Advent is also found in this game. In fact, it's found in what is implied to be the same mine shaft, and left there to be found by Ashe or Grey in Advent.
  • The Corruption: Model W. Virel's use of it gives him fearsome power, but when he tries merging with the core fragment, he becomes a psychotic dragon. When defeated, he beckons for more power, but Model W saps it from Virel instead.
  • Cyberspace: Cyberspace plays an important role in both story and gameplay. Nett and Elf can go to cyberspace and back through holographic doors. Unlike in Mega Man Zero 3, entering Cyberspace is obligatory to progress.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Nett is the Sole Survivor of a Maverick attack that killed his parents.
  • Disappears into Light: Mother Elf ultimately erases all traces of Virel from existence, with no chance to survive in ANY way. He severely injured Elf and Nett, though, and Nett uses the Key to support the lost function of E.L.F., causing the two to be assimilated into the program.
  • Distant Finale: The true ending. It takes place ten years after Nett and Elf vanished, and shows Giro Express about to ride out to tackle a job, when suddenly, Giro's memory fills in a mysterious blank and he gets the feeling that something has come back, but can't tell what did. The scene shifts to the tree Ciel wept beneath at the end of Mega Man Zero 4, where this time, a happy event occurs: a door to Cyberspace opens, and Elf and Nett are shown reentering the real world, holding hands.
  • Doomed by Canon: Since Girouette has Nett's Express company and Elf's Biometal Z in the first ZX game, it is clear that the protagonists are not going to survive the game. Later defied in the True Ending, where they come back to the real world after 10 years in Cyberspace, their Biometals having moved on to new hosts.
  • Evil Counterpart:
    • The Big Bad, Virel, is one to Elf. Both are avatars of the Cyberspace, and both primarily use a Laser Blade in combat.
    • Darkspace is this to Cyberspace. In Cyberspace, Cyber-Elves could propagate and it enhanced your skills. In Darkspace, viruses propagate and power up enemies. Additionally, you have a percent meter that indicates darkness exposure threshold and rapidly climbs to 100%. If the meter maxes out, you begin accumulating damage. Fortunately, Darkspace is rife with data clouds that you can take cover inside to instantly stop and refresh the meter as long as you stay in them. It replicates the extreme heat mechanic of Sol Titanion's stage from Zero 4.
  • Frickin' Laser Beams: Lizarflect's stage involves reflecting lasers to illuminate sensors that open hatches blocking the way forward, a defense mechanism that attacks with strategically aimed lasers, and the Darkspace section of the stage involves dodging ricocheting laser bullets and destroying the cannons firing them to progress onward. Lizarflect uses both laser beams and laser bullets among his attacks.
  • Golden Ending: Achieved by completing a 100% completion. You are treated to a small scene where Nett and Elf return to reality, just like Prairie believed.
  • Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: Inverted. Nett fights with an Arm Cannon, while Elf fights with a Laser Blade.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: Virel unleashed the Spectre and V.R.S. because he is the personality of these viruses and a being created by Model W who cannot exist and grow if the viruses are erased. He argues that he has the right to exist just like anyone else, but his horrible misdeeds force the protagonists to end him.
  • Interface Screw: Happens in Gravfox's stage, which flips the player upside-down and right-side-up like Gravity Man's stage in Mega Man 5. Hyperion's stage is also a variant of Sage Harpuia's stage in Zero 2, where the reflection of the player cannot come into contact with any spikes.
  • Kill and Replace: Virel killed Laggros 10 years ago and has been impersonating him ever since, using his position to stage attacks on the government.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: Naturally, Mega Man Model X and Mega Man Model Z get to fight each other, continuing the tradition set by Mega Man X5.
  • Man Behind the Man: Brazo commits several crimes under the orders of his elder brother. However, Virel has long since replaced Laggros and tampered with Brazo's memory to forget his real brother's death and to make Brazo behave like a tool, and Brazo doesn't learn the truth before it's too late and he perishes trying to destroy Virel with a self-destruct tactic.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: Discussed by Elf. Being the owner of a small-time delivery business is appropriately awesome when you are also a Chosen One.
  • Nostalgia Level: Area Zero from Mega Man Zero 4 and Area A and Area D (itself a Nostalgia Level to Mega Man X) from Mega Man ZX make a return here with some minor changes.
  • Palette Swap: The Maverick bosses in this game reuses sprites from the bosses from the Zero and ZX series with a new paint job and some changes in their elements and attack patterns.
  • Recycled Soundtrack: Every music track in this fan game is pulled from existing games and compositions. These include Azure Striker Gunvolt, Dungeon Fighter Online, Mighty No. 9, the ZX Tunes, ZXA Tunes and Zero 4 Remastered soundtrack collections, and even a few custom tracks borrowed from talented music composers.
  • Ret-Gone: The consequence of saving E.L.F. is that Elf and Nett are merged with the program and forgotten by everyone. This explains why nobody mentions them in later games. The only one who has some form of recollection is Prairie, who gets watery-eyed and thinks there was something important sacrificed to attain peace and thanks the heroes. Even when the two return to reality 10 years later, the memories of Nett and Elf that lie within their friends come back very diminished due to their long absence, but there's a strong implication that they'll eventually be remembered; it'll just take time.
  • Sanity Slippage: The more power that Virel draws from Model W, the crazier he becomes, reaching Omnicidal Maniac levels near the end.
  • Secret Boss: In the penultimate level of the game, there are hidden paths that lead to two special bosses, both in reality and Darkspace. One is the Purple Devil, essentially the Shadow Devil from Mega Man X5 that must be beaten to retrieve the missing Cat Elf as per a sidequest. The other hidden boss is everybody's favorite messianic Reploid, Omega Zero, whose moveset is the same as his ZX appearance.
  • Suicide Attack: Brazo tries to kill Virel by self-destructing. It fails, and what remains of Brazo helps Nett and Elf with useful information and gived a final request before he dies. Elf then mercifully turns him into a Cyber Elf, though it wiped away his memory, which, after all the terrible things he did and regretted, is merciful and kind.
  • Taking You with Me: Brazo self-destructs trying to kill Virel. Virel escapes and Brazo dies shortly afterward. Later, near death, Virel stabs Nett and attempts a massive slash attack to kill him that Elf intercrpts. Then, Mother Elf appears to truly put an end to Virel.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: Elf is the mind of the program E.L.F., and Nett is the Key which unlocks its full potential.
  • Traintop Battle: You have this scenario when you fight Erebus. It is identical to the boss battle mechanics with Panter Flauclaws in Zero 2, with two big changes. Erebus chooses Darkspace as the battlefield, and to increase the tension even further, you have to beat him in under two minutes, because he's planted special bombs in the engines that will explode and insta-kill you.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Arguably, Virel. He is the persona of V.R.S. and his existence hinges on the spread of viruses. He, unfortunately, has Sanity Slippage and begins to harm innocent lives and plot the annihilation of everyone who threatens his deletion because he's just that desperate to stay alive, and becomes an unsympathetic tyrant that Mother Elf decides to eliminate herself.
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