Mega Man X[b] is an action-platform video game developed and published by Capcom for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES). It was the first Mega Man game for the 16-bit console and the first game in the Mega Man X series, a spin-off of the original Mega Man series that began on the SNES’s predecessor, the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). Mega Man X was released in Japan on December 17, 1993 and was released in both North America and Europe the following year. Taking place a century after the original Mega Man series, Mega Man X is set in a futuristic world populated by both humans and “Reploids”, robots capable of thinking, feeling, and growing like their human creators. Because of these complex attributes, many Reploids are prone to destructive, criminal activity and are thereafter referred to as “Mavericks”. The plot of the game follows the protagonist Mega Man X, an android member of a military task force called the “Maverick Hunters”. With the help of his partner Zero, X must thwart the plans of Sigma, a powerful Maverick leader wishing to bring about human extinction.
With the transition to more advanced gaming hardware, series artist Keiji Inafune explained that the development of Mega Man X involved reinventing Mega Man through gameplay expansion and a more mature storyline while still maintaining the basic concepts on which the franchise was built. Much like the NES Mega Man games that came before it, Mega Man X is a standard action-platform game where the player takes control of the eponymous character and must complete a set of eight, initial stages in any order desired. Defeating the boss character at the end of each stage grants the player one new weapon that can then be toggled and used at will for the remainder of the game. However, Mega Man X adds a number of new features and makes radical changes to the original gameplay mechanics of previous releases in the series. These include allowing the player to dash along the ground, scale walls, and obtain armor attachments which grant special abilities.
Mega Man X has met with positive reviews for its gameplay, sound, and graphics, as well as its attempt to augment the aging Mega Man franchise. A longterm commercial success on the SNES, Mega Man X has since been ported to personal computers (PCs) and mobile devices, included in the North American Mega Man X Collection for the Nintendo GameCube and PlayStation 2 (PS2), and released on the Virtual Console download service for the Wii, the Wii U, and the New Nintendo 3DS. The game also received a remake on the PlayStation Portable (PSP) titled Mega Man: Maverick Hunter X.[c] Nintendo re-released Mega Man X in the United States in September 2017 as part of the company’s Super NES Classic Edition, and a limited physical re-release for the SNES in celebration of Mega Man’s 30th Anniversary due for release in September 2018 and published by iam8bit.