Game Center CX Season 2 – Back to Contents
Locked On to "Rockman 2"
After the three-day stress of Prince of Persia, Arino is given one of Capcom’s best games, which is also one of its most challenging. Arino pledges to beat this game in less than one day this time.
Arino starts off with the Wood Man stage, but hits a wall at the fire-breathing wolves, so he backs out and tries Metal Man instead. It’s a little easier getting through the stage, but when he gets to the boss, he only has two slivers of life left. On the second try, Arino uses the energy tank he got earlier and succeeds. He writes down the password on the whiteboard and continues, this time to the Bubble Man stage.
After getting through the damn underwater spikes, he makes it to Bubble Man and makes quick work of him thanks to the Metal Blade. In trying to figure out where to go next, Arino looks at the manual and the profiles of the bosses. If Bubble Man is based on water, and Heat Man is fire, then it’s a no-brainer from here.
As one might expect, Arino has trouble with the disappearing blocks in the Heat Man stage. Multiple deaths later, he finally gets past them, only to spot the devilishly-placed 1UP below the blocks. He takes a moment to consider things, then drops down. He tries leaping back over to the next block, but… yeah, it’s not happening. On the next try, he learns his lesson and makes it through to the boss. Another quick match leads to success, and the acquisition of Dr. Light’s Item 1.
Back to Wood Man. The Metal Blade makes especially quick work of him this time. From there, it’s on to Air Man. The robotic blowhard actually provides a real challenge for Arino thanks to the pattern of his air shooter. Eventually he lucks out and uses the Leaf Shield at just the right time.
Crash Man is also a pushover. And so is Flash Man, for that matter. All that’s left is Quick Man. Oh right, Quick Man, and those wonderful giant lasers in his stage. Arino takes 40 minutes of trial and error to try and get past those lasers, but to no avail. AD Sasano steps in to offer his help, and gets past the entire section in one simple, modest try. Hmph! He leaves Arino to face Quick Man alone.
Arino tries everything against Quick Man. Even though most of us know the Time Stopper is best against him, Arino ends up defeating him with the Crash Bomb. Now, with all of the bosses defeated, the path to Dr. Wily’s castle opens. Arino smartly uses the Dr. Light Items to get through the opening stage, and finally reaches the first boss of the castle, the Mecha Dragon. But just getting to start the battle is tough enough thanks to the introductory block-hopping, where Arino consistently fails. Once the string of blocks ends, he manages to beat the dragon with regular shots.
Arino reaches the second stage boss, the wall panel monster Pikopiko-kun. He smartly uses to Bubble Lead to defend himself, but he still can’t properly avoid its spawn points. After a few tries, some careful thinking and a chart on the whiteboard, he succeeds. He makes his way through the next stage and defeats the Guts Tank. The producer hands Arino the wall clock — Arino hasn’t quite beat the game in the time he thought he would at the start. It’s taken him so long that he has to cancel a get-together that night.
The following stage is a gauntlet of tricky traps. First, there’s the false floors towards the end of the stage that Arino keeps falling through. He laughs at himself, and then uses the Bubble Lead to find out which parts of the floors are fake. When Arino gets to the boss — the wall turrets — he figures out how to use the Crash Bomb to defeat them, but goes in the wrong order and wastes his shots. He starts over and has Sasano help him chart the correct order on the board. This time Arino gets it done.
Finally, onto the final stage, with the boss gauntlet to complete first. Arino refers back to the whiteboard to remember each boss’ weapon weakness. He blows through them and reaches the final boss, the Wily Machine. He dies repeatedly, of course. The producer comes back with the clock saying that it’s almost time to go. Arino has one final chance.
He dies again. He asks for one more last chance, and… he comes close, only to die again. That’s it. Arino respectfully turns in for the night, and asks Sasano to finish the game. The next footage is from Sasano’s playthrough — a few short minutes until the ending.
Arino visits K-GAME, an arcade game warehouse in Kisarazu. All their games are available for purchase and each one is in pristine condition. Arino and the building’s manager take a small tour and Arino is shown quotes of the games’ prices. Arino is astounded by the high prices, and rather than show the viewers the number, he equates them to something else (a PSP, a bike, etc.). And apparently Mr. Driller doesn’t run much less than Tekken 4.
Arino goes downstairs to the larger-size games, and finds that a regular kids’ medal game goes for about as much as that Tekken 4! Further along, Arino also spots the Super Mario World pinball machine from Gottlieb, a relic of the past sitting here dismantled in a Japanese warehouse. Lastly, Arino tries out F-Zero AX, which seems to be the most expensive thing there.
I’d Like to Meet This Man: Etsunobu Ebisu
Arino talks to Etsunobu Ebisu from Konami, responsible for many of the Ganbare Goemon games. Arino is familiar with Ebisu already, though, due to his involvement in the Yoiko game for Game Boy Color.
Game Collections: Square Enix