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Meta-Encapsulated Granule Awareness System, in case you were wondering.note 

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Mega Man ZX is another entry in Capcom's flagship series, set about two centuries after the events of Mega Man Zero and developed by Inti Creates, the team behind the Zero series. This time around, the games are Metroidvanias. The wars between Human and Reploid have finally ended through the process of modifying both races until they're completely indistinguishable from one another. Even so, the threat of Maverick attacks still remains, although the cause of these outbreaks are entirely different.

It consists of two games:

  • Mega Man ZX, starring Vent and Aile, a pair of orphaned Humans who are taken in by a courier service named "Giro Express" after its owner, the reploid Giro. And are tasked with recovering a quartet of Biometals by a peacekeeping force known as Guardian, before they fall into the hands of Serpent, a popular (but evil) CEO looking to find the Biometals to further his own divine evolution.
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  • Mega Man ZX Advent, which takes place four years after ZX and stars Grey and Ashe (the former's a Reploid, the latter's an augmented human like Vent and Aile), who team up with the Biometal Model A to uncover their mysterious pasts and stop Master Albert, a rogue member of the world's ruling triumvirate out to pull what Serpent tried in the last game, only a thousand times over.

A collection of the ZX series along with the Zero series, Mega Man Zero/ZX Legacy Collection, is slated for release in January 21, 2020 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC through Steam, featuring new beginner-friendly features with a Casual Scenario mode and Save-Assist ability, optional CRT and smoothing filters, a collection of official artworks and music from both series, and an all-new Z Chaser mode where players compete against each other to see who can clear a stage the fastest.

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Currently has a growing character sheet. Please feel free to contribute.

Has no relation with BIOMETAL, a completely different game.


The Mega Man ZX games employ the following tropes:

  • All There in the Manual: The main residential city in ZX (i.e. Area C) is named Cinq Ville, but you'd only know that from the soundtracks.
  • Alluring Anglerfish: Lurerre from ZX is mostly shown as a robotic mermaid, but the "mermaid body" is actually her lure — her big, fishy body is offscreen most of the time, and sometimes appearing to launch a strong attack.
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us: Happens once in the first game after you beat 4 Pseudoroids.
  • Ambiguously Gay: Rospark may be a robot, but he sure acts the part. A rose-based Pseudoroid with a clownish voice who enjoys fighting Grey while acting like Ashe is full of cooties, has a large, pink, very phallic rod at his groin area (but also another one on his head), and is a rose... Is there any other way to take that?
  • Amusement Park of Doom: The location where Vent and Aile's parents are killed before the start of ZX. And it's Mettaur-themed, no less.
  • And Man Grew Proud: The unending Maverick Wars of the X series and the near-total extinction of all habitable places on Earth during the fourth installment of the Zero series have long since passed, and both humans and reploids lead relatively comfortable lives. Notably, ZX is the only main line Mega Man subseries where the quality of living has been unquestionably improved over the past series.
  • Androids Are People, Too: Almost literally in this game — see Ridiculously Human Robots below.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: After some time passes, bosses will respawn in ZX, allowing the player to fight them again. This gives the player a chance to get a higher rank on any boss, gaining a higher weapon energy bar for their Biometal without needing to pay Fleuve a large amount of Energy to repair it.
    • Area C (a civilian location with only a few enemies that completely ignore you if you're in human form) contains a number of health pickups and even a one-up, making it an ideal place for farming lives and refilling sub tanks.
    • Advent features a number of improvements over the original ZX.
      • It does away with the cumbersome mission system, allowing players to tackle any stage and sidequest at their leisure as soon as it becomes available.
      • The game also has waypoints at the start of every substage that can be activated with enough E-crystals, allowing the player to warp straight to the start of that substage from any Transserver.
      • Weakpoints in Advent are harder to hit but carry no penalty for hitting them, unlike in ZX, where hitting an enemy's weakpoint (which were typically quite large) would result in the player receiving a "damaged" biometal with a smaller energy bar.
      • While ZX's map only consisted of a vague world map, Advent's map has much more information, showing how many substages are within each area, as well as providing a map of the current substage.
      • Since your A-Trans forms' special attacks are often needed for stage progression, you slowly regenerate BM energy over time to ensure you don't get trapped anywhere with no energy.
  • Arc Words: The "Game of Destiny" for Advent.
  • The Artifact: All of the player characters still explode into balls of light on death, even though most of them are humans. Vent and Aile may be justified in that it's the Biometal that causes the explosion, but Ashe can explode into spheres in her intro stage before she obtains Model A.
  • Artifact of Doom: The original Biometal, Model V/W, fits this like a glove. Granted, it holds the essence of the villain of the previous series...
    • The Corruption: Specifically, it corrupts people who try to use its great power.
  • Attackable Pickup: Any large powerup can be carved into several smaller powerups of different types using a bladed weapon. So if you didn't need all that health or weapon energy, or you just don't care about 64 more E-Crystals at the moment, or you desperately needed a certain powerup but you couldn't get any, get out a saber.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: Partially subverted. The idea in ZX is to avoid hitting the enemy's weak point, because doing so makes it cost more to repair the enemy's Biometals (not that it costs very much in the first placenote ) once they're salvaged (and you don't get the boss plushie for the mobile in Prairie's room). One medal in ZXA requires that you hit only the weak point. Another note... 
  • Audio Adaptation: ZX Gigamix, a CD which contains the remixes of the themes in the games, as well as drama tracks, which serves as manuals.
  • Autobots, Rock Out!: "Pallida Mors", the Final Boss theme from the first game.
  • Ax-Crazy: Prometheus is a straightforward example, while Siarnaq appears to also be this despite coming off as emotionless.
  • Bag of Spilling: Despite the fact that you're not playing as the previous Hero/Heroine in Advent, the whole plot is the fact that the Big Bad (through Prometheus and Pandora) has stolen Vent/Aile's other Biometals and is putting them to use. He/she shows up looking for them later.
  • Balance, Power, Skill, Gimmick: The game uses this in a Multiform Balance variant: Model ZX is balanced, Model FX is about power, Models HX and PX are about dexterity and speed, and Model LX is about movement in water. (It can be used outside water, but its performance is lackluster.)
  • Bee Afraid: Queenbee in Advent. The fact that she loves terror and despair just makes it worse.
  • Big Bad:
    • If the ciphers in Advent were to be believed, Model W, a.k.a. Dr. Weil, Back from the Dead, was pulling the strings. Again.
    • Serpent and Master Albert are more traditional examples.
  • Blob Monster: The Lava Demon in ZX, the Mini-Boss of Area K.
  • Bookends: In Advent, Grey/Ashe will wake up in the infirmary of the Hunter's Camp after defeating the boss of the intro stage. After defeating Dr. Albert and blacking out inside of Ouroboros, both of them will wake up inside the infirmary for the final cutscene.
  • Bonus Boss:
  • Boss Rush: You know that this one was coming.
  • Bottomless Pit Rescue Service: Model A, once per pit, only on easy mode.
  • By the Power of Grayskull!: "MEGAMERGE/ROCK-ON!"
  • Call-Back: Area N is one to the Zero Space (Mega Man X5's final stages). Both are caused when a gigantic floating object fell to earth, causing the ground zero to merge with Cyberspace and other strange phenomena. Also, Zero is partly the cause of the phenomenon (as Omega is derived from Zero as well) and you get to fight him in the area.
  • Canis Latinicus: The Latin used in the I Am the Trope example is a bit...off.
  • Cast of Snowflakes: Advent adheres to this trope (except for the hunters when in uniform, and that's kinda justified), amd Inti Creates went the extra mile and made almost every NPC character look completely different, and even gave them all amazingly elaborate designs. Yes, even the ones who have no importance whatsoever besides talking to you.
  • Casual High Drop: In Advent, in Ashe's storyline, she in the intro jumps off the Hunters' airship down several hundred meters to the Raiders' ship below her and manages to land safely. This pretty much establishes her as a badass even before she gets her hands on the Model A.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Model A's homing shot in Advent. While it is useful in the normal stages beforehand, the final boss fight is one time when the homing shot is essential.
  • Chest Monster: Some life-up power ups are actually Mechaniloids in disguise. They glow purple while genuine life-ups glow orange.
  • The Chosen One: In a slightly different sense — here, being "the Chosen One of Model (insert letter here)" just means that you can access the Biometal's power; but since it's implied that Master Albert did the choosing, with his special blood donation, which means that the Mega Men are "destined" to be so, this trope is still played straight.
  • Clip Its Wings: Hivolt's weakness (where the Model H Biometal is stored) is located in his wings.
  • Clothes Make the Superman: The Biometals gives the user the armor and the powers of the respective Reploid.
  • Color-Coded Elements: Fire is orange/red, ice/water is blue/light blue, lightning/wind is green/yellow, and Non-Elemental is usually purple.
    • The colors of the area icons on Advent's world map correspond with the element of that level's boss.
  • Combat Tentacles: In Advent, we have Fantacles, as well as the miniboss Langbranch.
  • Continuing Is Painful: Unlike other Mega Man games, where you can just start the level over on the spot after a game over, ZX dumps you back at Guardian HQ and forces you to hoof it all the way back to the level for another try, though it at least has the decency to retain your E-Crystals. Advent is even worse, as you can only reload your last save, losing everything since then.
  • Continuity Nod: The series has several references to the Classic, X, and Zero series.
    • In fact, one whole level is essentially a remake of the intro level in the original Mega Man X. To really rub the point home, the only model available at the time is Model X.
    • Prairie's room has some Mega Man Zero memorabilia, adding fuel to the Epileptic Tree that she was previously Alouette, Ciel's Kid Sidekick.
    • The final level of Advent, Ouroboros, has a striking resemblance to Ragnarok from Zero 4. This is because Ouroboros was made from hundreds of Model W, which were spawned from Ragnarok. Also, Model Z disappears inside, much like how Zero "disappears" in the destruction of Ragnarok.
    • Two of the cars from Mega Man (Classic) Battle and Chase appear, and the E-Tank makes a triumphant return.
    • The Guardian Base is powered by the Ciel System, the energy system Ciel was working on throughout the Zero series.
    • The first part of the Arctic Ice Floe area in Advent has a background similar to the background of the first part of the X1 Intro stage.
    • The operator in Hunter's Camp in Advent is named Nana, like the operator from Mega Man X: Command Mission.
    • One of the missions you undertake at the Floating Ruins in ZX Advent have you searching the ruins for outdated artifacts; these include the L Tank from 4, the ever-recurring Energy Balancer, the Yashichi recovery item from the original and Mega Man 8 (called "Pinwheel" in-game), and the Lightbulb which served as life energy back in the original Mega Man. All four of these items are given explainations for their antiquity by the time of ZX (i.e. the L Tank was never mass-produced, etc.).
    • The entire Sage Trinity is named after the main scientists of the original series: Master Thomas = Dr. Light, Master Albert = Dr. Wily, and Master Mikhail = Dr. Cossack.
    • Some levels in the first game have the remains of bosses from the Zero series lying in the background. You can notice this early on, during the first boss fight.
  • Courier: The Giro Express transporters are essentially this.
  • Creator Thumbprint: Arguably, but many characters listed in the character sheet (and even most NPCs) have Fingerless Gloves, big anklets and bracers, headphone-like ears, and black latex-like skin-tight suit that covers all of their skin (except for the face). This can be traced back to Zero series.
  • Crutch Character: Model X, to an extent. What makes him useful is that his double buster can be used in quick succession. He's still good after you finally get him back. Too bad you can't use him on the final boss. He's an immense help on the penultimate boss, and you probably want Model H on the last boss anyway.
  • Custom Uniform:
    • Prairie's suit is different than the other Guardians. But then again, she's their leader.
    • Also possibly Giro with his red coat, since his employees Vent and Aile wear blue shirts.
      • Poignant, considering what happens to people who wear Red Shirts.
  • Cutscene Power to the Max:
    • Serpent in the first game has an ability to summon thunder strikes that could instantly take down the target, but he only does that in the cutscene of his first appearance. Probably justified with the fact that he was outdoors when he did that; he later appears in a cave and then in the Slither Inc. HQ.
    • Prometheus' signature wave attack ranges from just does heavy damage to anything it hit (Grey/Ashe in the cutscene on the first train level) to outright One-Hit Kill (Albert's decoy body in the cutscene on the Underwater Volcano level). Of course, it won't result in that in his boss fight. Again, possibly justified by the fact none of the victims were Megamerged, which would obviously increase their defensive capabilities.
    • Pandora is able to create Beehive Barriers, but she never does that in the boss fight.
    • Aeolus in the second game can float indefinitely in cutscenes, but when you (as the copied form of Model A) try to do that, you'll fall down slowly. Though this one's justified; see Redemption Demotion below.
  • Cyborg/Transhuman: All of the humans in the ZX world; there's even a law for giving humans cybernetic implants, as said by Thomas.
  • Diagonal Cut/Half the Man He Used to Be: Blade weapons will result in this to the Mooks and Pseudoroids if it's used for the final blow. A carryover from the Zero series.
    • Hit Stop: When you kill the bosses. Also a carryover from the Zero series.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Grey and Ashe did, as they beat the uber-powered Albert.
  • Dig Attack: Flammole has 2 variants of this: one where he goes up and down while he drills the ground and ceiling, trying to strike you from above/below, and another where he just goes back and forth underground and sending harmful debris everywhere.
  • Disadvantageous Disintegration: A milder variant in the first game: While you can still get the Biometals after beating the 8 bosses, the more you hit their weak points, the more damaged the Biometal gets, and thus the less energy they will be able to store.
  • Distant Sequel: The games take place two hundred years after Mega Man Zero, which in turn takes place a hundred years after Mega Man X, which is itself set a century after Mega Man (Classic).
  • Doomsday Device: Albert's Ouroboros qualifies, as it's the instrument he used to "reset" the world. The theme song which is played in the instrument (yes, said instrument is also a stage) is even called Doomsday Device.
  • Double Entendre:
    • One of Ashe's first lines in ZXA: "Now that your appetites are whet for booty..." (Huh huh... she said "booty"...)
    • Before boarding the Ouroboros-bound Guardian Base, one of the Hunters says "What do you think the bounty might be on bootynote  that big? I'm getting excited just thinking about it!"
    • Chronoforce looking to "take my time manhandling you" during the Boss Rush rematch.
    • Just about everything Queenbee says could be subjected to this.
  • Dropped A Bridge On Them: Being popular characters from the Zero series, the 4 Guardians were included as Biometals in this series. However, you have to be dead before you can be a Biometal, so the Guardians were abruptly declared to have died at the end of Zero 3. Apparently by standing too close to Omega when he blew up.
  • Dual Boss:
    • Pandora and Prometheus. In the first game, they at least have the decency to only attack one at a time, in the second... not so much.
    • Argoyle and Ugoyle from Advent. They also have many Combination Attacks that is quite hard to avoid.
  • Early-Bird Boss:
    • Spidrill from the Tower of Verdure is potentially the second boss you fight. It does a lot of damage, has hard-to-dodge attacks, and you can die instantly from spikes. And you have little health at this point. To make matters worse, it's only a mini-boss.
    • The intro level in the second game also qualifies; unlike the first game, which gives you Model X from the start, here you're forced to play with your base form wielding a standard peashooter.
  • Eco-Terrorist: In ZX Advent, Thetis is one of the villains, and his motivation for terrorizing the people (and feeding their souls to Model W Fragment) is that people have been ruining his beloved seas.
  • Electric Jellyfish: Leganchor in ZX; subverted, he's An Ice Person.
  • Emotion Eater: Model W feeds on negative emotions (anger, sadness, fear, etc.) to grow and be activated. This is probably because Model W is the essence of Dr. Weil, whose sole enjoyment in life was causing people to suffer. This is also justified on a deeper level; if you read the sourcebooks and extrapolate a little, it's implied that Dr. Weil's insanity was shaped partially by his own fear of Mavericks. Serpent powers up Model W by feeding it what is explicitly stated to be the souls of people who died while in the grip of fear!
    Serpent: Model W, it's time! The despair and fear of this country are yours!
  • Emotionless Girl: Pandora, on the outside at least.
  • Empathic Weapon: Technically speaking, the Biometals.
  • Endgame+:
    • Beating the first game in Normal or Hard mode makes you able to unlock a new form. Of course, you'll have to beat either the Bonus Boss or the bonus Boss Rush first.
    • Beating the second game allows you to unlock a bonus room in the Raider airship in the Oil Fields that has a chance of dropping unique chips with differing effects (though only on certain months).
  • Energy Economy: The E-Crystals, introduced in the previous series, amount to Reploids' and Cyber Elves' "food". Nowadays they've become a currency.
  • Equipment Upgrade: In the first game, if the Biometals you gain are damaged (i.e you did some number of hits on the Pseudoroid's weak points), you can ask Fleuve to upgrade it up to its fullest version, at the expense of EC.
  • Everything's Better with Monkeys: Purprill of ZX.
  • Everything's Better with Spinning:
  • Evil Laugh:
  • Evil Duo: Prometheus and Pandora.
  • Evil Tainted the Place: Areas M and N were the crash site of the space station Ragnarok, with which Mega Man Zero's Big Bad Dr. Weil fused himself long ago, and where Model W's malevolent energies have been seeping into ever since. Said area is full of strange phenomena, including the appearance of Reploids there who should've died long ago.
  • Expy:
    • Aeolus, Atlas, Siarnaq, and Thetis for Harpuia, Fefnir, Phantom, and Leviathan are the most obvious ones.
    • The title character him/herself. Mega Man ZX is the Expy of Zero, gameplay-wise at least.
    • Girouette is one, to Zero himself. Both being Big Brother Mentors to the heroes, having blonde hair and red color schemes, and apparently sacrificing himself to save the heroes. Not to mention being the Biomatch for Model Z.
    • The similarity of two of the four "enemy Mega Men" with their original counterpart is scary. Aeolus and Siarnaq both carry some of Harpuia and Phantom's admirable traits, except probably for honor.
    • Like it or not, Model A and the Mega Man that results in the transformation, is still an expy of Axl from the X series.
    • Grey and Ashe themselves can be considered split-expies of Axl. Ashe has Axl's cheerfulness, cockiness and recklessness, while Grey is an amnesiac boy who wants to know about his origins, much like Axl.
    • Prairie may as well be an expy of Ciel herself. Then there's also the fact that she is hinted at having romantic feelings for Giro. Then again, she's all but stated to be Alouette from the Zero series, who obviously looked up to Ciel as a big sister figure.
    • The Sage Trinity are named after characters from previous Mega Man series (Albert Wily, Thomas Light, Mikhail Cossack). Played straight with Albert, who proves to be evil and treacherous like his namesake, but subverted by Thomas, who turned out to be a not-so-benevolent figure in ZXA's secret ending.
    • Pandora (more prevelant in civilian form) given similar hair color, hair length, hair style (barring the front) preference for white and blue (hue is different), and the fact that their nasty pasts drive them to madness may be a subtle one to Shion Sonozaki.
    • Vulturon: Zombielike? Check. Uses a guitar? Check. Has a crazy rocker personality? Check. He must've been taking some notes from Lord Raptor.
  • Extra Eyes Sensors/Eye Sensors Do Not Belong There: Many of the Pseudoroids and Serpent's One-Winged Angel Form have extra sets of eyes somewhere on their bodies, Some are rather hard to notice like Vulturon'snote  and some are rather obvious like Lurerre's, the mechanical nature of them means that it is more cool then creepy though...
  • Fanservice: Okay... so, in a non-sexual way, most of this game is fanservice. However, the Double Megamerge for Aile sure does take its time letting the armor on her legs activate, especially when Vent's just click into place.
  • The Fighting Narcissist: Vulturon of Advent.
  • Finishing Move: Much like the Zero series, if one defeats a Pseudoroid with a slice from a melee weapon with an edge, that boss will literally be bisected. However, Advent adds a second finisher that if you defeat a Pseudoroid with a fully charged buster shot, it either blasts a chunk of the boss's abdomen out or an entire half of their upper body is wiped out, leading to a nice view of their inner workings.
  • Fighting in the Playground: The boss battle against Purprill takes place in his personal room, which is decorated like a playground, complete with sandy floors.
  • Fire, Ice, Lightning: A carryover from Zero series.
  • Flunky Boss: Chronoforce can summon miniatures of himself from his shell.
    • Vulturon can use his guitar-shaped device to animate pieces of junk.
    • Hedgeshock can summon some mouse flunkies.
    • Queenbee has a Bee Bee Gun variant.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Advent includes a minigame based on the NES Mega Man games. And then Mega Man 9 came out, done by the same developer, Inti Creates.
    • There's also more foreshadowing on the Game of Destiny (which is then fully revealed in the second game) in the first game, mostly in Aile's storyline with Prometheus cryptically stating he wants to see if she's worthy of being a part of the "game" before fighting her, Pandora saying all Mega Men must fight until only one remains, and Serpent all but states their battle was destined for the right to obtain Model W and the world.
    • Albert's status as the true Big Bad is foreshadowed as early as the first game in Aile's storyline, with Prometheus making constant references to a mysterious figure who's been manipulating everything behind Serpent. In his dying moments, Serpent flat-out states to Aile they both share the blood of Model W's creator. And in the second game, there's many Cryptic Conversations that involves, in Grey's words, "the 'HIM, HE and HIS' guy" before finally revealing the mysterious chessmaster, Model W's maker, and Master Albert are all the same person.
    • The Mysterious Lab in Advent includes three capsules: One for Prometheus, one for Pandora, and one for a mysterious "Prototype" with a model number before the other two. This is eventually revealed to be Albert's true body.
  • A Form You Are Comfortable With:
    • In the first game, when you talk to the civilians when you're Megamerged, they'll flip out, as you'll be mistaken as a Maverick. You have to transform back into your human form first.
    • Played differently in the sequel where you can talk to the civilians in Model A form, and if you are using another form when you're going to talk to them (or when you're entering cutscenes), you'll automatically transform into the Model A form. Justified in that said civilians are all Hunters and fully aware of Biometal, Pseudoroids, and Mega Men, where as the civilians in ZX are just your average townsfolk. Even the ones explicitly referred to as townspeople in Advent are people who deal with the likes of Hunters frequently, and so someone walking around in armor like a Mega Man isn't something too out of the ordinary for them.
  • Fun with Acronyms: M.E.G.A. (Meta-Encapsulated Granule Awareness)/R.O.C.K. (Rebirth Of Crystallized Knowledge).
  • Fusion Dance: Biometals X and Z (not the actual Mega Men) that form the title character.
    • The Biometals act as a Power Booster for humans and Reploids, turning them into "Mega Men" and granting them armored forms and abilities.
  • Gambit Pileup: ZX Advent is a veritable Gambit Casino, due to the number of villainous factions and the fact that none of them particularly like each other. Specifically, the enemy Mega Men are trying to accumulate Model Ws (as per Master Albert's Game of Destiny) in order to become incredibly powerful. Albert is just using them, however, to feed the Model Ws so that they'll become the Ouroboros. The Mega Men know this, and are planning to backstab Albert, then fight amongst each other until only one remains to inherit Model W. Then there's Prometheus and Pandora, creations of Albert who in the previous game claimed to be the voices of Model W (after pretending to work for that game's Big Bad), but are now inclined to destroy everything that Albert made, including Model W. After the game is beaten on Hard mode, it turns out Master Thomas actually wants to reset the world as well, but in a different manner than Albert, hence why he wanted the latter killed. As for Model W, it stands to gain from any of these things happening, and is probably manipulating the entire cast, given its origin as explained in the first ZX game. You got all that?
  • Gameplay and Story Integration: A lot of talk is made over how unique and powerful the Mega Men are, despite their comparatively Boring, but Practical moves compared to the Pseudoroids (Model W Mega Men being an exception, to the boring but practical thing, of course), but Advent shows this to actually be the case, thanks to Model A's A-Trans ability. The Mega Man forms are all built for general combat in all terrain (even Model L is usable and quite agile on land), while the Pseudoroids are specialized to the point of paralysis sometimes. Even Buckfire, the most "Mega Man"-like of the Pseudoroids, just can't quite match the sheer agility of a proper Mega Man. Looks like there's something to all that talk after all.
  • Gameplay Grading:
    • In the first game, your fight with the Pseudoroids is measured in Level 1-4; Level 4 means that the weak point didn't get hit, and Level 1 means that the weak point was hit a lot. The higher your success level, the longer the Overdrive Gauge the Biometal you acquired has (although if you get a Level 3 or lower, you can either repair the Biometals with a price, or doing a rematch with the same Pseudoroid later).
    • In the second game, you'll got bronze, silver or gold medal if you follow the Self-Imposed Challenge on the specific Pseudoroids. Collecting all 24 of them will grant you the "Model a" (note the lowercase).
  • Game Within a Game: There's an arcade in the first game where Vent/Aile (or, indirectly, you) can play some minigames.
  • Gangsta Style: Grey and Ashe use their guns like this.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Rospark and Queenbee talk with lots of innuendos in their pre-boss and defeat quotes.
  • A God Am I: Master Albert proclaims this in his own way.
    "I don't THINK I am a god... I AM a god!"
  • Good Colors, Evil Colors: Isn't it interesting that all the protagonists in both games have green eyes, and all the non-pseudoroid antagonists (including Master Thomas) ALL have red eyes? Giro has blue eyes, too, though that's kinda irrelevant.
    • The above point is used as a tip towards Grey's origins; when he wakes up in the tube in the beginning of his story, his eyes briefly flash red before going to green.
  • Goomba Stomp: Bifrost's form can be used to crush enemies when you fall on them. Justified, he's frickin huge.
  • Gradual Regeneration: In Advent, the weapon energy is regenerating.
  • Granola Guy: Thetis in Advent, hell-bent on cleaning up the Earth's oceans.
  • Gratuitous Latin:
    • ZX's final battle theme is titled "Pallida Mors" (pale death).
    • The Biometals' passwords in the first game are split between this and Canis Latinicus.
  • Grim Reaper: Prometheus's motif.
  • Guide Dang It!: The missions in each game require you to travel to the location where the mission takes place, unlike other Mega Man games where you're just teleported there. Unfortunately, you don't get good hints as to where these places are in ZX, making it very easy to get lost in the Metroidvania world. Advent recertifies this with a more accurate mini-map that shows where you need to go even if you haven't actually explored that area yet in order to show you're on the right track.
  • Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: Zigzagged. While no Biometal or weapon is exclusive to one character, official art shows Vent favors the ZX-Saber while Aile prefers to use the ZX-Buster. Averted in Advent, where Model A only gives guns and so our 2 new protagonists use them.
  • Half-Identical Twins: Vent and Aile... maybe. Prometheus and Pandora as well.
  • Hand Cannon: Model F allows you to carry two of these and you can even punch with them, thus the name "Knuckle Busters".
  • Happy Ending Override: Downplayed to the Zero series. Zero 4 ends with Zero's Heroic Sacrifice to kill Dr. Weil, which brings humans and Reploids together at long last after centuries of fighting. ZX shows that Mavericks and world-destroying threats are still around, but the 200 years of relative peace between the series is all but stated to be some of the best times for humans and Reploids to live in, and things never get as dark in ZX as they did in Zero.
  • Hartman Hips: Aile and Ashe. It's more pronounced in the cutscenes.
  • Heart Container: The Life Up items, which will permanently raise your life gauge. There are four located in each game.
  • Heel–Face Turn: After Grey/Ashe saves the mischievous Raiders, they thank him/her and want to join the Hunters. They also provide supplies for the broken train.
  • Henshin Hero: All of the ZX protagonists qualify, with the Biometals. Since the major villains use Biometals too, there are Henshin Villains as well.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Master Albert's demise comes from his own back-up body Grey and his unaltered descendant Ashe.
    • The only way to destroy an Angle Cannon is with an explosion from a cannonball shot from another Angle Cannon. If you're quick on the draw, you can even destroy the cannonball as it's coming out and destroy the cannon that way (or just stand right next to it as it fires at you and tank a hit.)
  • Holiday Mode: Advent has unique chips and healing items that can be attained in one of two rooms in the Raider airship in the Oil Fields depending on the month (with the former only available on a cleared saved file). Adjusting the month in the DS settings can let you have those items quickly.
  • Homage: ZX Advent is one giant homage to X7/X8, as they have many matching story points. These are just a small portion of them:
    1. Axl doesn't know his past.
    2. Axl is a prototype of New Gen Reploids, and Lumine in particular.
    3. Axl is black and Lumine is gold.
    4. Lumine wants to become the ruler of the new world where the New Gen Reploids reign.
    5. Both Axl and Lumine can change forms.
    6. Lumine's battleground is high to the moon.
    7. Lumine can use the attack from 8 New Gen Mavericks, and he also has an angelic form.
    • Those facts are similar with (respectively)
    1. Model A and Grey/Ashe doesn't know their past.
    2. Model A is considered a "prototype" (or at least "small version") of Model W.
    3. Model A is black and Model W is gold.
    4. Albert wants to be the god of the new world.
    5. Both Mega Man Model A and Albert (via Model W) can change forms.
    6. Ouroboros, Albert's stage, is high to the sky.
    7. Albert can use the attack of the Enemy Mega Men, as well as Model A's homing shot and Model ZX's charge saber. He also has 6 wings, a tail, and a halo (as Mega Man Model W).
  • Human Hard Drive: Protectos serves this role, like Zero 1's Ganeshariff.
  • Hulk Speak: Buckfire of Advent.
    Grey: Who's this!? He's different from the other Mavericks...
    Buckfire: Me not Maverick! Me Pseudoroid. Me Buckfire! You get away from Prometheus and Pandora, but not from I! Buckfire obey rule! Buckfire will pummel you into ground!
  • Hunter of Monsters: The Hunters organization in ZXA, which acts as Bounty Hunters or Treasure Hunters, as well as their Evil Counterpart, the Raiders.
  • I Am the Noun: When the 6 Biometals in ZX gives out their passwords to unlock the door leading to Model W, we got this:
    Model H: I am the wind that blows through the sky, Ventus Airus.
    Model L: I am the water that flows across the land, Glacius Passio.
    Model F: I am the fire that brings heat to all life, Flamma Wies.
    Model P: I am the shadow that never leaves the side of justice, Umbra Profess.
    Model X: I am the light that illuminates all possibilities, Lumine Infinitus...
    Model Z: I am the courage that fights for beliefs, Fortitude Creed...
  • I Am Who?: The protagonists said this word-for-word in the games. The ones who play the trope the straightest are Grey and Ashe, as they don't know who they really are.
  • An Ice Person:
    • Model L enables you to control ice. In the second game, Thetis is its Biomatch.
    • Pandora, though she uses Model W instead.
  • I'm Having Soul Pains: In Advent, acquiring a Biometal's data causes Model A to unlock Exposition, causing Grey/Ashe intense pain. Acquiring Model Z and Model X's data also causes Aile/Vent to suffer backlash due to being in close proximity with Grey/Ashe as their data gets copied instead of teleporting out like the enemy Mega Men.
  • Infinity +1 Sword: The aforementioned Model OX. Arguably Model X as well, because of the methods of unlocking it.
  • Instant Awesome: Just Add Dragons!: Albert's throne in ZXA could transform into a three-headed dragon.
  • Interface Screw: Those annoying satellite dishes in Area L. Blue soundwaves will reverse your controls, while red ones will prevent you from attacking. Thankfully, the effect wears off, but it's enough for many players to consider Area L That One Level.
  • In the Blood:
    • Serpent says that the blood of the Model W's creator runs in Aile's veins. ZXA reveals that he was referring to Master Albert, who donated his blood to certain survivors of Maverick Raids, thus giving them the key for Megamerging. Those "Chosen Ones" (as seen in Aeolus' cipher) later become the Mega Men.
    • Played straighter with Ashe, as she is an actual descendent of Albert himself.
  • Invisible Monsters: Advent has these kind of robo-mooks; Model P's radar is useful on locating their position.
  • Ironic Episode Title: Advent (means "the second coming") is a second game of the series, yes, but the titular Mega Man ZX is not the hero of this game — They're replaced with Grey/Ashe and Model A.
    • Then again, it could also refer to the second coming of Model W.
  • It Is Pronounced ZEX: Rockman ZX (ロックマンゼクス Rokkuman Zekkusu).
  • I Wish It Were Real: This series are about kids who get the ability to transform into Mega Man. Subverted, though; from their point of view, their heroes are historical, rather than fictional.
  • Joke Character: Model a (lowercase) in Advent, which plays like the original Mega Man. Although it does have a small advantage in being short and harder to hit. Also, easier to overlook on this as there are not really times when it would completely alter an area, the shots will go through walls that don't have the ability to reflect bullets.
    • Vent and Aile's non-powered human forms are completely useless with two exceptions: Talking to civilians (since they're too freaked out by your Biometal forms to talk and just tell you to go away) and crawling through holes. Advent makes this form even more irrelevant, as despite the fact that it actually comes with a gun this time, you can now speak to anyone in your Model A form (your character even changes back automatically before doing so,) and while it still holds the monopoly on being able to crawl through small spaces, Hedgeshock eventually gives you a form that can do it quickly and do it underwater.
  • Just Eat Gilligan: Advent actually demonstrates the savvy use of this trope. In the Quarry, Grey/Ashe have an encounter with Aile/Vent, and the two get in a fight over what to do with the Model W in its depths. The former finds the Model W fused to a Spidrill and are forced to destroy both. It turns out that destroying the Quarry's Model W was the whole reason Aile/Vent were there in the first place! Unfortunately, destroying it wasn't enough to keep Ouroboros from forming, but you have to give the gang credit for trying.
  • King of Beasts: Fistleo in ZX. He's also a Blood Knight with a slight god complex, to boot.
  • Large Ham: Master Albert and Prometheus, by far.
  • The Law of Conservation of Detail: Subverted in Advent due to its attempts to avert You All Look Familiar, where pretty much everyone you meet has different designs and personalities, except for the guys in uniform, who still act different. In other words, trying to rely on this trope to see who is important is completely pointless for this game. Though of course, as in all Mega Man games, the only ultimately really important ones are the robot animals/things actively shooting you.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: When the final boss fight in Advent is interrupted by a vengeful Prometheus and Pandora teleporting in and kill-stealing Albert before the fight even begins, Model A declares "I didn't think this is how the game would end...", a statement that could refer to both the Game of Destiny and the actual game.
  • Legacy Boss Battle: Omega from Mega Man Zero 3 appears as a Bonus Boss in the N area. Defeating him nets you the Model O Biometal, the strongest in the gamenote . If you have completed both Zero 3 and 4 in their cartridges, linking them to the DS slot can let you fight 4 of each game's bosses in the same area, and defeating them all gives you the same reward.
  • Left Hanging: Advent left at least 4 major loose ends across both games unanswered: (Ciel's fate before the events of ZX, Prometheus and Pandora's fates post the confrontation in Master Albert's undersea base, and Model Z's fate post-Heroic Sacrifice are unknown; and Master Thomas positions himself to be the next Big Bad). This was in vain, as Capcom pulled the plug on the series, and we're not likely to see the third game anytime soon.
  • Legacy Character: The Biometals, to X, Zero, 4 Guardians, Omega, and Weil. Arguable case with Model A, as it's revealed that the "A" stands for "Albert", not "Axl", even though the biometal is clearly based on the latter.
  • Lethal Joke Form: Chronoforce's form in Advent; it can't move at all on land, but is immune to attacks from attacks from above and its charge shot, the Time Bomb, is quite useful. You can even change form after it's activated.
  • Lethal Lava Land: Area K. Also a Scrappy Level on anything above Easy. Mainly because of Advancing Wall of Doom and Rise to the Challenge, both involving One-Hit Kill lava.
  • Lift of Doom: The final level in the first game has a lift section. Unlike most examples, it has no crushing platforms, only spike-lined walls and a lot of enemies.
  • Lighter and Softer: Compared to Zero and X, but not quite to the levels of Classic. Genocide and social Darwinism are still regular topics, but the art is much more colorful and the music much cheerier than its immediate predecessors. The tone and themes are also very different—while the last two series taught that War Is Hell, ZX argues for creating your own fate.
  • Living Ship: Ouroboros stage has a heart-like machine that beats like a real heart, and also blood vessels-like lining in the background. Also, when Albert is defeated, the linings are coloured grey, signifying that the Ouroboros is dead as well.
  • Loads and Loads of Sidequests: The game has many sidequests and quest chains. It's justified, though, as the main character is a delivery person.
  • Locomotive Level/Traintop Battle: Buckfire's stage.
  • Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me:
  • Magical Girl: The female Mega Men takes cues from this, especially with the Transformation Sequence that Aile and Ashe get.
  • Magical Mystery Doors: The Scrapyard level in the second game.
  • The Master: The Sage Trinity all have the title "Master" before their names. Two out of the three are evil.
  • Meaningful Echo:
    • Giro tells Aile to Screw Destiny in the first game's ending:
      Giro: Are you going to let some man you don't even know decide your destiny for you? Destiny is not something that is given to us by others. Destiny comes from the concept of "destine," or directing something towards a given end. Be the one doing the directing. Only you can decide your destiny.
      Aile: Only I can decide my destiny...
      Giro: Yes. Forget the past. It means nothing. The power you contain within is the key to creating your future.
      • Then in Advent, after the Quarry mission, she gives this to Grey:
      Aile: Only you can decide your own destiny. No matter what anyone says you are. The power you contain within is the key to creating your future. That's what a special person said to me.
      Grey: My destiny... My future.
    • In the first game, Girouette pulls out a Big Damn Heroes moment when Aile/Vent fights the second boss, by appearing from out of the screen in midair and delivering a strong slash to it. Later in Advent, when Grey/Ashe fight a seemingly-undefeatable boss in the Quarry mission, Aile/Vent saves him/her with the exact same action.
    • After Grey beats Aile and before he goes down to destroy the fallen Model W, we have this:
      Aile: Aren't you going to try and stop me?
      Grey: That's not why I'm here.
      • And then, when Grey has trouble destroying the Mechaniloid revived by Model W, Aile comes to the rescue and destroying the Mechaniloid. Then we have this exchange:
      Grey: Why did you help me? Didn't you come here to kill me?
      Aile: That isn't why I came here either.
  • Meaningless Lives: The games has some extra lives scattered in easy-to-reach places. Combined with the save feature (especially since you can have an option to load your saved game if you get a Game Over), it becomes easier to farm extra lives.
  • Mechanical Abomination
    • The original Biometal, Model W, are pieces of the derelict Ragnarok from Mega Man Zero 4, fused with the soul of its creator, Dr. Weil. The things look monstrous, can grow and affect their surroundings in different ways, they can amplify anxiety and/or frustration of people and then eat those negative emotions by turning people into Cyber-Elves and then eating them. It can also turn its user, Serpent, into a robotic abomination.
    • In the sequel, where more of the Model Ws are shown, its apparent "creator" Master Albert powers them up by help of the Enemy Mega Men by sacrificing people, and after he's done, he reconfigures them into a much bigger abomination named Ouroboros, a Doomsday Device that looks like the mythical Ouroboros, and when our heroes venture into the thing, it has a beating mechanical heart and Tron Lines that "represent" blood vessels. Albert's going to use it to reset the world.
  • Mechanical Lifeforms: The "humanoids" is the Fan Nickname for both humans and Reploids in the game, since they're nearly indistinguishable. See Ridiculously Human Robots and Transhuman below.
  • Mega-Corp: Slither Inc. in ZX, which in addition to their work as a peacekeeping force (who engage in Engineered Heroics) is also a Mechaniloid manufacturing company (producing the very robots that go Maverick) as well as a leader in energy production (which is at least partially a cover to them harvesting people and Cyber Elves to feed Model W). The civilian population is legitimately convinced of their benevolence, however, and even the lower-ranked Slither Inc. employees Vent/Aile can talk to only have legitimately good things to say about their jobs, showing just how good Serpent was at keeping his true intentions hidden until he quite literally firebombs part of the city with his Mavericks and ships near the end of the game. Presumably Slither Inc. lost this status post-game after said attack and Vent/Aile proceed to kill Serpent and inadvertently blow up Slither Inc.'s main office.
  • Mercy Invincibility: The games have the Extender chip that can extend the invincibility time.
  • Metroidvania: Both of them.
  • Mighty Glacier: Bifrost of Advent; he has a great attack power, but he moves very slowly. Bonus point of being An Ice Person, fulfilling every sense of the trope name.
  • Monster Compendium: Like in Mega Man Zero 3, in both games, you can collect Secret Disks to find the infos about mooks and bosses, as well as Non Player Characters.
  • Monstrosity Equals Weakness:
    • Leganchor is the largest Pseudoroid you'll fight in ZX, and consequently is the easiest to beat normally and for a Level 4 victory since he's a Stationary Boss whose weak-points are easy to avoid damaging and he can be blitzed down before his attacks can kill you.
    • Played With in Advent. The first boss is the biggest opponent you'll fight in the game...and also the weakest boss. The Final Boss's penultimate "throne-tank-dragon" form is a close second in size, but is more dangerous given several moves it has and being a Damage-Sponge Boss. Bifrost is both the largest and most inhuman of the Pseudoroid bosses, but he's not a pushover thanks to the small size of his boss room and the fact he's not a Stationary Boss and will use his bulk to his advantage to smash you.
  • Multiform Balance: More notably used in Advent, where you can transform into the bosses themselves, with each form having its own gimmicks and stats.
  • Multiple Game Openings: In the second game, the opening will be different depending on who you choose to play as.
  • Multiple Life Bars: Layered life bars, especially.
  • Multishot: Buckfire can shoot 3 flame arrows at once. Naturally, so does the A-Trans version.
  • Musical Assassin: ZXA's Vulturon and his blatant use of The Power of Rock for evil.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Serpent.
  • No Transhumanism Allowed: Averted with the generally robust society of Reploids and cybernetically augmented humans, played straight with the bad guys being stopped from going overboard in their use of Model W to further their personal evolutions.
  • Nostalgia Level:
    • Area D in ZX is an homage to the intro stage of Mega Man X1. It's a highway with helicopter minibosses that cause parts of the highway to collapse. And to drive the point home, the only playable biometal at this point is Model X, meaning X is going through the same level again.
    • In ZXA, Floating Ruins, Highway, Scrapyard, and Control Tower are all implied to be the locales of the previous installment, between being located in the same general area relative to each other and reusing graphics. Heck, Master Mikhail says that the machines in the Scrapyard used to be covered in snow (as they were in ZX) and you can spot the broken glass capsules Serpent used to contain Cyber-elves in Control Tower's Boss Corridor.
  • One-Letter Name: The Biometals are named as "Model (the first letter of the corresponding character)".
  • Operation: [Blank]: Serpent's "Project Haven" in the first game, which aims for acquiring the Model W and activating it by feeding it with Cyber-elves "harvested" from the victims of "Maverick raids" that he secretly made himself.
  • Outside-the-Box Tactic: Advent's final boss has some otherwise hard-to-avoid attacks if not for the fact that transforming into Chronoforce makes you immune to two of them, and another can be easily avoided by using Model H and upward-dashing then hovering over the blue lasers.
  • Playing with Fire:
    • Model F enables you to control fire. In the second game, Atlas is its Biomatch.
    • Prometheus, although he uses Model W instead.
  • Poor Communication Kills: The reason Grey/Ashe end up fighting Aile/Vent in the Quarry is because both sides assume the other is a hostile Mega Man working with Albert, and the vague answers they give each other just exacerbates this. Ashe is particularly guilty, in that while Grey simply tells Aile he's there to retrieve the Model W when she demands to know what he wants with it (just for Legion, not Albert), Ashe just blows off Vent's same question and says she's going to take it whether he likes it or not. Luckily, both sides figure things out and patch up afterwards.
  • Power Copying:
    • Why are you able to combine the powers of various biometals? Because X had the Weapon Copy System, allowing for the use of different weapons. It's been adapted into biometal form.
    • Model A takes it further by transforming into defeated Bosses.
  • Power Makes Your Hair Grow: Vent/Aile grow blonde hair when they transformed into Mega Man ZX.
    • Power Dyes Your Hair: However, in ZXA, since their actual hair is long already, they just turn blonde.
  • Power Stereotype Flip: Purprill, one of the holders of the Biometal Model P, is a hyperactive Manchild. By contrast, Model P itself (as a sentient artifact) is appropriately stern and solemn like a ninja.
  • Power-Strain Blackout: Model A and the player collapse from the stress of defeating the final Boss in Advent, requiring the player from the previous game to save them.
  • Pre-Explosion Glow: All Pseudoroids (as well as Albert) die this way. A carryover from the Zero series.
  • President Evil: Technically speaking, Master Albert again. And of course Master Thomas may count as well.
    • Also Serpent, President of Slither Inc and the country the first game takes place in.
  • Previous Player-Character Cameo: In Advent, you meet either Vent (when playing as Ashe) or Aile (when playing as Grey) halfway through the story. And thanks to Model A's A-Trans, you get to play as them again too.
  • Purely Aesthetic Gender:
    • Vent and Aile are pretty much Distaff/Spear Counterparts of each other. Their stories contain slight differences, but they play almost exactly the same. Their only difference comes in their scarcely used human forms, in which Aile has increased crawling speed, and Vent receiving slightly less knockback when hit by an enemy.
    • The sequel averts this a bit; it introduces minor gameplay changes and divergent backstories depending on which character is selected. Also, Grey is Reploid and Ashe is human, unlike Vent/Aile who are both human. Additionally, the Mega Men bosses (and thus the player, since Model A is a Ditto Fighter) use different attacks depending on which character you choose.
  • Quirky Miniboss Squad: The enemy "Mega Men", as an allusion to their predecessors.
  • Ragnarök Proofing: In Advent, if you take a certain quest, you can find some surviving old "artifacts" like the L Tank and the Yashichi from a distant past despite the world going through multiple global-scale disaster.
  • Real-Time Weapon Change: In Advent, the bottom screen has the icons of the available A-Trans forms, that you can transform into when you touch the icon, without the need to pause.
  • Recurring Camera Shot: Vent/Aile is having a problem fighting a Mini-Boss, when their partner, Giro, shows up as a transformed Mega Man Model Z who leaps to the air and then takes down the Mini-Boss in one powerful slash from his sword. In the sequel, when Grey/Ashe has difficulty fighting another Mini-Boss, Vent/Aile shows up, now as Mega Man Model ZX, doing the same move to the Mini-Boss to save them.
  • Redemption Demotion: Expect the A-Trans versions of the other Mega Men to lack many of their boss quirks.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning:
    • The Enemy Mega Men and Albert. The latter combines it with Black Eyes of Evil.
    • Interestingly, as shown in Grey's intro cutscene, he had these, before they turned into green eyes. As Pandora stated, it's because his brainwashing was incomplete, so it's justified.
  • Red Herring: When Albert reveals his true nature, he declares that Grey and Ashe were "Made in my image." At first, they just assume that they were given Albert's DNA at some point like all the other Chosen Ones were. However, he eventually reveals that what he really meant is that Grey is a backup body for Albert, while Ashe is a distant descendant of his.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Inverted. Vent/Aile, the Blue Mega Man, is a hotheaded and impulsive boy/girl who tends to charge headfirst into situations. Girouette, the Red Mega Man, is his/her Big Brother Mentor who is calm, caring and level-headed.
  • Redshirt Army:
    • The Guardians in ZX, who seems to be an expy to La Résistance in the Zero series.
    • The Hunters in Advent (who are arguably expys of the Caravaners, also from the Zero series) notably avert this. In fact, in the beginning, they survive against the resident Psycho for Hire, and stole a Biometal out from under his nose.
  • Reflecting Laser: Ashe's charged shot.
  • Repeatable Quest: Rose and Huguet will request you to go to Area Lin order to gather some supplies for them. After going to three diferent sections each time, Rose will give you a sub tank. However, you can only obtain two sub-tanks for this and any subsequent attempt only nets a token thank you and a few Energy Crystals.
  • Retraux: The Mega Man a minigame in ZXA. If you're crazy enough, the 8-bit "Model a" can even be unlocked for the main game.
  • Rhino Rampage: Protectos of ZX.
  • Ridiculously Human Robots: This is turned Up to Eleven (bordering in Ambiguous Robots) for the Reploids, as they're designed to become more like humans, and from the other side, humans are augmented with machinery. The only thing that differentiates them is the inverted red triangle on Reploids' head.
  • Ring Menu: Type 1 exists in both games, when you want to change forms. Type 2 exists in Advent, in the pause menu.
  • Robo Speak: Siarnaq.
  • Rollerblade Good: Argoyle and Ugoyle in Advent.
  • Sailor Earth: Original Characters made for ZX often carry a Biometal of other X or Zero characters. (Model V(Vile/Vava), Model C(Colonel), etc.)
  • Save Point: Trans Servers, which double as Jump Points.
  • Schrödinger's Player Character: This extends into both games, as Aile's and Grey's storyline are connected, as are Vent's and Ashe's. There's actually some hints about connections between the two storylines. Both Vent and Aile are shown in one of the ciphers (Aeolus'). Also, in Ashe's storyline, there's a stage that was Grey's intro stage, but Grey's intro area of the stage is inaccessible and the bridge to it is destroyed, while in Grey's storyline, the remains of Ashe's intro boss can be seen in the background of the Oil Fields. This may imply that, if you play as Ashe, Grey falls to his death when the bridge is destroyed after he defeats his intro boss, and if you play as Grey, Ashe is killed by Prometheus or dies in the Raider's plane crash.
  • Scenery Porn: The series' visual aesthetic matches its Post Cyber Punk setting, with the knowledge that this beautiful world — including the futuristic cities like Area C and Legion HQ as well as the natural environments — came at the heavy sacrifices of three generations of heroes centuries prior, making this beauty a case of Earn Your Happy Ending.
  • Screw Destiny: The theme of this series.
    • In the first game, it's stated that the Mega Men (the ones who can use Biometals) have the power to either save the world, or destroy it. Also, in Aile's storyline, it's revealed by Serpent that she has the "blood" of Model W's creator (it's also revealed in the next game that all Mega Men have the "blood", which contains the DNA of said creator, Albert). After she defeats Serpent, she briefly goes into a Heroic BSoD over her "heritage", and then Girouette appears to her as a Cyber-Elf, telling Aile that the blood is just blood and that only she controls her destiny.
    • In the sequel, after the Quarry mission, Aile/Vent gives Grey/Ashe essentially the same lecture, Aile in particular repeating the exact same lines Girouette told her to Grey.
    • It's later revealed that this is Prometheus and Pandora's ultimate goal, since Albert modified them to become permanently Megamerged, and they're destined to fight other Mega Men. They can't escape that destiny (possibly because Their Days Have Been Numbered by Albert), so they exact revenge on Albert by killing him and trying to hasten the "destiny of destruction". Unfortunately, they become Albert's Unwitting Pawns just as they reach their goal...
  • Sealed Good in a Can: The Biometals, all except for the original, which is a Sealed Evil in a Can.
  • Second Hour Superpower: Model ZX in the first game counts as this. Also Model A in the second game.
  • Segmented Serpent: The Giga Aspis in the first game and their fiery Degraded Boss cousins in Advent.
  • Sequel Escalation: Probably the most prolific example in the entire franchise. The first game was about stopping one madman from awakening one Model W core, and he fought with one Model W fragment while starting his plans back from at least a decade. In game two, you're finding W cores every other mission, it's revealed that the first game was a minor skirmish in the grand scheme of things, and the Big Bad makes his reveal by having FOUR fragments orbit him and his plans having been turning for centuries. This extends to gameplay as well, with Advent having more boss-given powers than any classic-y game in the franchise, with a whopping thirteen boss powers plus a secret 14th form for getting every boss medal - and, rather than just only one weapon per boss being copied, you learn a good chunk of the boss' repertoire of moves.
  • Sequel Hook: At the end of Advent, Master Thomas revealing his plans.
  • Sequence Breaking: Allegedly, it is possible to get into area O long before it is time to.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: Pretty much the entire first game. Those Biometals you retrieved from the Pseudoroids? Stolen over the Time Skip and given to new enemies. The entire conflict with Serpent? Just a single part of the real Big Bad's game, albeit a part that came closer than anything before it. That Model W you destroyed? It just broke into several large pieces, all of which are recovered by the bad guys. Oh, and it's also only one of several dozen or possibly hundreds of Model W's scattered across the world. At most, Vent/Aile just bought the world a few years during the Time Skip and became sufficiently learned to help Ashe/Grey win the day.
  • Shared Life Meter:
    • Whenever the two are fought together, Prometheus and Pandora share a life bar. Whereas each of them alone has 2 layers of life bars, them combined has just 3. In the first game they just attack alternately, while in the second they get Combination Attacks.
    • In Advent, Argoyle and Ugoyle, when fought, initially appear to have single health bar. However, when you activate Model H and use it to Enemy Scan them, you'll see that each of them has their own health bar. It's a lot more noticeable if you focus attacks on only one of the two, who will collapse once their life bar is depleted and leave the other with a weakened moveset.
  • Shock and Awe:
    • Model H enables you to control lightning (as well as wind). In the second game, Aeolus is its Biomatch.
    • Pandora, but she instead uses Model W.
  • Shout Out:
    • One of the tracks on the first game's soundtrack is "High-press Energy -Super Aniki Edition-".
    • Each cipher in ZXA uses the starting point of a Gundam timeline as its memory address. (Depending on who you ask, one's actually from Xenosaga.)
    • Super Robot fans will happily note that in Advent, the older Vent and Aile bear a suspicious resemblance to Evoluder Guy and Mikoto. It's all in the hairstyles.
    • During Vent's megamerge scene in Advent, Model ZX's hair makes it look like he has several glowing wings. Before that, his megamerge scene in the first game resembles a certain Gundam.
    • Some of the Pseudoroids have an uncanny resemblence to other characters. Fistleo's resemblence to Akuma has not gone unnoticed by many fans. Likewise, Hedgeshock/Tesrat looks like the robotic spawn of Sonic the Hedgehog and Pikachu.
    • The Sage Trinity are all named after the doctors from the classic series (Albert Wily, Thomas Light, Mikhail Cossack), though whether they have any actual relation to the characters is unknown. Interestingly, while Wily's expy is traitorous and evil, so is Light's, as revealed in ZXA's secret ending.
    • If you select Ashe as the hero, Vent will appear in her storyline. Vent is a french name and read as "Van" (ヴァン). Thus, Vaan and Ashe, is the logical conclusion.
    • This page contains tons of Shout Outs for this series.
    • Volturon is basically a robot Lord Raptor.
    • In the English version, Volturon's death quote has a brief shout-out to the band Megadeth.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: Prometheus (insanity and nihilism; elements of shadow and fire attacks) and Pandora (loneliness and solitude; ice and thunder attacks).
  • Social Darwinist: Serpent. Arguably Aeolus and Atlas. Master Albert kinda straddles the line between this and Nietzsche Wannabe.
  • Soul Eating: In this series, it's possible to turn living beings into Cyber-elves, as the line of humans and robots in the setting have become blurred. The Slither Inc. is revealed to be responsible for turning mass amounts of people into elves without the populace knowing, so that they'll become food for Model W.
  • Soul Jar: Quite likely, The Biometals are this to the respective Reploid/human they represent (though there's still many alternate theories).
    • Subverted for Model A; while it's called Model Albert, its personality differs a lot from Albert himself.
  • Spanner in the Works: If not for the two Hunters Mick and Robin fumbling in the mysterious lab and accidentally releasing Grey from his People Jars, and later the Hunter Billy saving the nearly drowned reploid and taking him under the camp's wings, he wouldn't be the one to stop the Big Bad's plans.
  • Spikes of Doom: Happily Married to Regenerating Blocks of Doom. And meet their unholy spawn, the Spiked Regenerating Blocks of Doom.
  • Spread Shot: Quite a few that are player-usable in Advent. Buckfire's flaming arrows and Hedgeshock's Charged Attack sparks are of the regular variety, while Rospark's thorns and Model P's shurikens are Spray Bursts.
  • Stealth Pun: Camp Gay Rospark is a rose.
  • Stealthy Mook: In Mega Man ZX Advent, the Inviz mooks in the Floating Ruins stage can periodically turn invisible, only going visible to shoot at you.
  • Superhuman Transfusion: It's revealed in Advent that in order to be able to Megamerge, the "Chosen Ones" needs to be infused with Albert's blood, which contains his DNA, which is the key for Megamerging. It can be argued that the DNA is "datafied" as humans and reploids have machine parts. Not entirely played straight, but it's still there.
  • Super Mode: The Overdrive Invoke System in the first game. When activated (indicated by an aura), you can assign elemental affinities to your normal attacks (except for Model PX, which enables you to phase through enemies while dashing). Your weapon energy will be consumed slowly while it's activated, and the Overdrive mode will stop if the energy is depleted, or if you get hit. You can also deactivate it manually.
  • Super Not-Drowning Skills: Maybe: It's unclear how the biometals effect the user (besides giving him/her their inherent abilities). If the Player Character is in human form, he/she will float on the water and never sink. If s/he's using a biometal, s/he will sink like a stone, with no adverse affects whatsoever.
  • Swiss Army Hero/Voluntary Shapeshifting: All of the protagonists qualify, with Grey/Ashe and Albert, though he's a villain specializing in the latter.
  • Tagline: From this Japanese promotional trailer: "When fate must be stood up to... people shall Rock On."
  • Talking Is a Free Action: The Pseudoroid bosses has a time to talk to the heroes before exploding. Even if they've been cut in half.
  • Talking Weapon: The Biometals are all qualify, except for Model W and Model O. Oddly enough, Models H, F, L, and P becomes The Voiceless in the sequel, but that may be justified by them having evil users.
  • The Starscream: Prometheus and Pandora again.
  • The Stinger: ZXA has one that reveals that the enemy Mega Men are Not Quite Dead and Master Thomas is not as benevolent as he appears.
  • Theme Music Power-Up: In the first game, after a little lecture from the 6 Biometals, you get a brief moment of your protagonist's bright idealism, accompanied by Green Grass Gradation (the very upbeat and optimistic Area A music from the very beginning of the game), before commencing the final battle.
  • Theme Naming:
    • Borderline example with the first 8 Pseudoroids. Their first names share the initials to the Biometals they possess (Hivolt the Raptoroid, Lurerre the Abysroid, etc).
    • The Enemy Mega Men's names in the second game (as well as Prometheus and Pandora's names) are taken from Saturn's moons. Although, when taken into context of the mythological deities behind the moons' names, not all of them fall squarely straight into fitting with their designated names (see Tomboyish Name below for examples).
    • Meanwhile, Vent means "wind", Aile means "wing", and Girouette means "weather vane", all in French. Prairie means "meadow", and the operators in the first game have Floral Theme Naming in French (Gardénia, Tulip, and Marguerite). Fleuve means "river" and most of the Guardians' member are named after fishes, also in French. Everything Sounds Sexier in French, apparently.
    • Jumping from the above two, there's a "earth vs sky" theme within the good guys and the bad guys. Discounting Serpent, of course; but since he was formerly a good guy (a former Guardian member), this still sticks.
  • There Can Be Only One: It's repeatedly mentioned that the "Game of Destiny" is meant to be fought out between The Chosen Many until only one remains to claim the power of Model W and become the Mega Man King. The majority of the villains are on board with this, while protagonists are only interested in stopping the villains from murdering countless innocents in their quest to wake up Model W. And practically name-dropped by Master Albert to his (now unnecessary) backup plan Grey, declaring that with Ouroboros' completion and his own plans about to bear fruit, there's no need for a "spare" ultimate Mega Man.
  • Throw the Mook at Them: ZX Advent: A partial example — Hedgeshock can summon robot mouse flunkies. She can normally be hurt by anything, but there's an achievement for using nothing but the mouse flunkies to hurt her — by knocking them at her with the right powerup.
  • Title Drop: The name "Model ZX" is referenced during the Slither Inc's invasion to the Guardian HQ:
    Pandora: You... The girl from before... Model X... Model Z... together...
    Prometheus: Or should we just say Model ZX now?
  • Tomato in the Mirror: Aile is revealed to have the blood of Master Albert running through her veins (and by extension, all Chosen Ones), Ashe is revealed to be an actual distant descendant of Master Albert, while Grey turns out to be one of his backup bodies.
  • Tomboyish Name:
    • Atlas (Mega Man F) from Advent is actually female.
    • Inverted: In Greek Mythology, Tethys and Thetis were both female figures and Siarnaq is named after an Inuit goddess.
  • Too Dumb to Live: When rescuing civilians from the burning building in Area G, you still have to switch to your human form to get them to cooperate. Apparently being rescued from burning to death by a reploid cosplayer is just too embarrassing for most people.
  • Toy Time: The Area H stage in the first game. It's a bit of a subversion, since Vent and Aile's parents are implied to be dead here years ago.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: The animated promo for the first game depicts Giro's death and his passing Model Z to Vent/Aile, though under somewhat different conditions than in the actual game.
  • Transformation Is a Free Action: Played with.
    • Subverted by the player characters of the first game; the first transformations into the Model X and Model A Mega Men don't take as long as they seem to, as the camera merely focuses on different parts of the body in separate shots — one could argue it's all happening at the same time. The first transformation into the Model ZX Mega Man does take a while, though presumably because of the bodily strain and the energy being released, which vapourises all of the enemies about to shoot Vent/Aile. However, during gameplay, Mega-merging still takes less than a second.
    • Subverted also by Serpent, who transforms in identical fashion to the hero's in-game transformation, and also by the four enemy Mega Men of Advent, who do take a few seconds, but release powerful phenomena when they do so, which protect and obscure them (respectively: surrounded by whirlwinds, engulfed in flames, encased in ice, wrapped in shadows) and are ready to go immediately afterwards.
    • Played very straight, however, by Vent/Aile in Advent (when they're met as enemies initially), whose transformations are ludicrously over-the-top and expository, especially Aile's. Also done by Albert, who initially blows away the walls and ceiling, but otherwise floats in the air while his transformation completes itself. Both instances take a very long time to complete, and in both cases, Grey/Ashe just stand and watch.
  • Transformation Sequence: Vent and Aile in the first game get two for each, one for Model X and another for Model ZX. The second game turn this Up to Eleven, for Vent, Aile, Grey, and Ashe. Most notably Aile, whose transformation seems to be a Shout-Out to typical Magical Girl transformations. Hers can take about a minute and a half.
    • The Enemy Mega Men also have them, though they don't get animated cutscenes.
  • Transformation Trinket: The Biometals, which can produce Instant Armors as well as Cool Helmets.
  • Triang Relations: A minor one, mostly stemmed from this dialogue:
    Prairie: Aile. I know it's a little late for this, but... I'm so sorry that I didn't tell you about Giro and his mission to watch over you. Please believe me when I say that we didn't want to deceive you. Giro's face always lit up so much when he talked about you... Giro... He loved you very much.
    Aile: Prairie, did you have feelings for him?
    Prairie: W-what!?
    Aile: Hahaha! Maybe Giro resembles someone you cared about. Every time you talk about him, you look so happy. Don't worry, I won't hold it against you if you did like him. It's thanks to all of you that I'm finally able to fight for what's important.
    Prairie: Aile...
    • Shipper on Deck: From the dialogue above, they seem to ship each other with Giro.
  • Tron Lines: When Vent/Aile transforms into Mega Man ZX during a cutscene, intricate green lines will appear in the head crystal while red lines will appear over the black body suit.
  • Tunnel King: Flammole in ZX. Well, he's a mole.
  • Unusual Ears: All of the humanoids have the headphone-like variant, occasionally with an antenna.
  • Useless Useful Spell: Averted with glory and extreme prejudice with Chronoforce's Time Slow in ZX Advent. Even if you can't think of other times that justify using it, it is basically essential for claiming Rospark's gold medal (defeat Rospark by only damaging him with Rospark) on Expert Mode because it does work on bosses, and he otherwise dominates the battlefield with his Collision Damage. Using Time Slow will even the odds and slow him to a crawl without extending his Mercy Invincibility, allowing you to assault him in your Rospark's bud form and deal enough damage to drain his life, even though it'll still take countless hits whereas he can take you out with very few.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: Serpent; also Master Albert, initially.
  • Wake-Up Call Boss:
    • Buckfire in ZX Advent. He's the second boss in all and first Pseudoroid in the game and is fought right after obtaining Model A, so most players will still be feeling out the controls at the end of the short stage by the time they fight him. He's also fast, hits hard, and with the small space of the boss arena, can easily corner Grey/Ashe to wail on them.
    • Rospark in ZX Advent, who will end being either the second or third Pseudoroid fought. His attacks have wide range in "rose" form and he'll constantly move around around the room, and being an electric-type boss, Buckfire won't provide much aid. The ice-type Chronoforce won't provide much help here since he's useless on land outside of his Time Bomb, and worse, you have to beat Rospark first if you want to get the Sub-Tank in Chronoforce's stage in time for his boss fight.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Atlas and Thetis. In hindsight, Aeolus' and Albert's goals are actually nice too, it's just that they're too heavy on the "Extremist" side.
  • Where It All Began: Thematic example. Ouroboros, the Very Definitely Final Dungeon, comes to resemble Ragnarok, as mentioned in the Continuity Nod above.
  • Whip It Good: Rospark's weapon.
  • White and Grey Morality: The protagonists Vent, Aile, Ashe, and Grey are good guys who want to protect the innocent from Mavericks. You can also see that all of the villains (well, except Siarnaq, who doesn't seem to even HAVE a motive, and Prometheus and Pandora, who just want revenge against their master, Albert) in the series have good intentions. It's just that they're corrupted by Model W.note  Possibly a carryover theme from the Zero series.
  • Xtreme Kool Letterz: Justified, ZX stands for Zero and X.
  • You ALL Look Familiar: Averted in Advent, see Cast of Snowflakes above. Applies a lot more to the first game, however.
  • You Killed My Father: One of the Bosses in the first game is revealed to be behind the attack that took the life of Vent/Aile's parent(s).
  • You Shouldn't Know This Already: In the first game, each of the acquired forms have an extra Charged Attack move aside from their normal ones. You cannot perform them until you complete each of the forms, however.
  • Yuu Kobayashi: Voiced Model A.
  • Zero-Effort Boss: Leganchor in ZX is by far the easiest boss in general and to get a Level 4 victory on. He's a Stationary Boss who's huge and his weak-point is his turbines...which means all that Vent/Aile needs to do to defeat him is shift to Model Fx, get right underneath his face, and shoot upwards with Overcharge on. It's completely possible to just weather the storm of Leganchor's rather slow attacks and kill him within seconds.

Alternative Title(s): Megaman ZX Advent

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