Mega Man X (character)

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Mega Man X
Mega Man X, shown here in Maverick Hunter X, returns to his basic, Mega Man-like appearance for the beginning of each game.
Game series Mega Man X/Zero series
First game Mega Man X
Creator(s) Keiji Inafune
Voice actor(s) (English) Ruth Shiraishi (1997-2002)
Peter Von Gomm (2003)
Mark Gatha (+2004)
Voice actor(s) ( Japanese) Kentaro Ito (1997-1999)
Shotaro Morikubo (2000-2003)
Takahiro Sakurai (+2004)
Takahiro Mizushima (Mega Man Zero series)
In-Universe Information
Classification Advanced Robot (Mega Man X series) Cyber Elf (Mega Man Zero series)
Model number DRN-00X
Weapon(s) X-Buster, Variable Weapons System (Mega Man X series only)
Loyalty Maverick Hunters (Mega Man X series)
Resistance (Mega Man Zero series)

Mega Man X , or Rock Man X (ロックマンエックス Rokkuman Ekkusu ?) in the games' original Japanese, is a video game character and the main protagonist of Capcom's Mega Man X video game series. Introduced in the 1993 SNES video game Mega Man X and created by series creator Keiji Inafune, Mega Man X is a sapient robot who, along with his partner Zero and the rest of the Maverick Hunters, protects humans and intelligent robots known as reploids by hunting down rogue robots known as Mavericks.

While Mega Man, the protagonist of the original Mega Man series, was largely a personality-less cypher, the Mega Man X series places a greater emphasis on story, and casts X as a warrior who desires nothing better than to live in peace, but is forced to fight in order to protect that peace.

The NES system began to fade into obscurity in the face of its successor, the Super Famicom. Along with the improved graphics engine, Keiji developed a darker character design and plot, and according to him, he believes that such designs will continue with each new generation of technology. In line with the new "X" series developed, two characters were created, one being the main character of Mega Man X, and the inclusion of his partner, Zero.


Keiji introduced the design and character for Mega Man X on December 17th, 1993 in Japan, in his first game, Mega Man X. This game and its iterations received later distribution dates in America, with the first game being released to North America a few days later, on December 28th. Since then, X has appeared in every iteration in the Mega Man X series as the title and main character of the story , which takes place on a fictional Earth mirroring our own.

Keiji Inafune has stated that originally, X's partner in the series, Zero, was meant to become the title character of the next series. However, in an interview conducted in 2004, he has stated that the idea was scrapped and he made Zero into a supporting role, as the similarities were few between his original Mega Man design and for fear fans of the series might not relate to the new character. Also, despite the design, he has stated that Mega Man X and the original Mega Man are two different entities, although it is unknown how the first Mega Man disappeared in the series due to lack of storyline elements not introduced in late Classic iterations. It is believed this will become clear later in the series.

Video game history

Mega Man X is introduced in Mega Man X. The manual fills in his backstory: X is Dr. Light's final masterwork, a new advanced robot that could think for itself and make its own decisions. Light feared the ramifications of giving robots free will, so he chose to seal X inside a capsule for 30 years to test the integrity and reliability of X's systems. Unfortunately, this was well beyond Dr. Light's predicted life expectancy, and he died before X's diagnostics were complete. X was discovered still in his capsule 100 years later by Dr. Cain, who attempted to replicate X's technology and, with X's help, produced the Reploid (Note that Mega Man X himself is not actually a Reploid, as Reploids are based upon his designs. Rather, X (and his counterpart, Zero) is a highly advanced robot capable of sapient thought. When the Reploids began to rebel against humanity (such rebels are termed mavericks), the Maverick Hunters were formed to combat them, under the leadership of Sigma, the most advanced Reploid. This proved to be disastrous when he is infected with the Maverick Virus, and goes Maverick, taking most of the Maverick Hunters with him as he leads a massive revolt.

Mega Man X

Mega Man X begins with X, expressing guilt because he had a part in creating the Reploids, joining the remaining Hunters, then led by Zero. With Zero's help, X eventually defeated the Mavericks and their head, Sigma, but at the cost of Zero's life.

Mega Man X2

Mega Man X2 picks up where Mega Man X left off, as the Hunters have tracked down the remaining Mavericks. The X-Hunters, a group of Mavericks who wish to destroy X, gather the parts of Zero's corpse, seeking to use them as bait to lure X to his destruction. X destroys the X-Hunters and gathers Zero's parts, eventually and discovers that Sigma was behind the plot all along. (The player can choose to ignore the X-Hunters; in this case, a rebuilt, brainwashed Zero confronts X, but is defeated by his former partner. This ending is considered non- canonical, as it is not reflected in later games.) X confronts and destroys Sigma once again, while the newly-rebuilt Zero destroys Sigma's central computer.

Mega Man X3

Mega Man X3 reveals that there has been a period of peace after a Reploid scientist named Dr. Doppler created the cure for the Maverick Virus. This cure turns out to be an ineffectual placebo, however, and the Maverick Hunters find themselves overwhelmed with a massive Maverick uprising. X and Zero enter the fray and discover that the virus and Sigma are one and the same, explaining why Sigma keeps coming back. X and Zero destroy Sigma's new battle body (built by Doppler, who had been infected with the virus.) It is revealed but unbeknownst to X that his ultimate fate to save the human race would be to destroy Zero.

Mega Man X4

Mega Man X4 reveals that Zero is the origin of the Sigma Virus. The Repliforce War breaks out, because the Maverick Hunters judged a faction of Reploids as Mavericks without good reason. X, though, was led away from the real targets by a spy of Sigma named Double and it was Zero this time who foiled Sigma's plan by hunting down the Repliforce and destroying its top officers and Sigma himself, killing a good friend named Colonel and the love of his life Iris in the process. X, realizing that he was tricked and discovering that Sigma had set up the entire plan, became very frustrated and swiftly disposed of Double. This time, though, he was beginning to doubt his ability to remain sane, and he told Zero that if he ever were to go Maverick that Zero would have to take care of him.

Mega Man Xtreme and Xtreme 2

This series are side-stories, with no plot significance (they are only mentioned in X6, and even then, only once).

Mega Man Xtreme is set between Mega Man X2 and X3. In this game, a hacker named Techno has invaded the Hunters' Mother Computer and is using the data of previous Mavericks against the organization. With the help of Middy, X goes into cyberspace, where he discovers that Sigma had "influenced" Techno. X accidentally destroys Techno, then learns that Middy is Techno's twin brother, and that destroying Techno destroyed Middy as well. X, crushed, challenges Sigma once again and defeats him, extracting a measure of vengeance.

Mega Man Xtreme 2, which is set between X3 and X4, takes X and Zero to Laguz Island, where they X battle the Soul Erasers, Berkana and Gareth. X defeats Berkana and Zero defeat Gareth, and the two team up to defeat Sigma.

Mega Man X5

In Mega Man X5, the Repliforce has been wiped out and peace restored, and the Hunters hired several new officers. With their help, the next plan of Sigma was handled well. A new member called Alia spotted X as he hunted down the Sigma Virus, and accidentally spread it all over Earth. It turns out this was Sigma's plan all along. In addition, Sigma attempted to send the space colony Eurasia into the Earth, thus spreading the virus further, in order to awaken Zero's true self. Under one story possibility, X faced off with Zero after he ignored orders to report back to Base for a full physical check on his virus readings. In the other story possibility, the overwhelming amount of the virus became a catalyst that exposed his true self. In both possibilities, Zero saved X once again as Sigma tried to destroy him. Sigma retreated, and X went after him. Sigma revealed to him that Zero's true form is the one that emerges when he is powered up with the Maverick Virus, which occurred before the events of the first game. Zero, it turned out, had spread the virus to Sigma during a fateful battle in the cave prior to the events of Mega Man X. Sigma also spoke of a mysterious new ally who built a body for him. This ally sounded like Dr. Wily, but X seemed ignorant of who this person was. Once beaten, Sigma claimed he would take down Zero with him. As X and Zero both lay damaged from Sigma's massive explosion, X stood over Zero's battered body, hoping for signs of life. Sigma's remains then fired a blast straight through X and Zero. Zero revived for just a moment, destroying Sigma's remains and then passing away. X was badly injured, and Dr. Light miraculously healed him.

Mega Man X6

During the Nightmare Outbreak in Mega Man X6, X was still coping with the loss of his friend, unaware that Zero was still alive. The Zero Nightmare, a creation (and clone of Zero) of an infected Reploid researcher named Gate (who was Alia's former colleague), smeared Zero's name and was promptly defeated by X. Upon doing this, Zero showed himself again and X was elated. Together, they swore to eliminate the evil source of the Nightmares, and did so with Alia's help. Once Sigma revealed himself, X defeated him as well and claimed that he had more important things to do such as rebuilding the Earth. If Sigma were to come back, X would defeat him again and again, as many times as it takes. After the battle he saved the remains of Gate for Alia to repair, because he knew what it was like to lose a colleague and didn't want to see any more innocent Reploids die. Alia thanked him for this, and they swore to try to rebuild the Earth.

Mega Man X7

Months later shortly before the events of Mega Man X7, the Maverick Hunters were severely crippled as X retired from active duty to pursue more peaceful means to end the constant fighting. In his absence, a new Maverick-hunting faction known as " Red Alert" began hunting Mavericks, often with questionable tactics. Zero was summoned to the scene of a rampage in the city and found a young Reploid named Axl trying to flee Red Alert. He rescued Axl, and what ensued resulted in a harsh custody battle between the Hunters and Red Alert. X eventually returned to the Hunters and fought alongside Axl and Zero, eventually discovering Sigma back at it again, manipulating the whole fiasco from behind the scenes. The trio confronted the maniacal Reploid and defeated him once more.

Mega Man X8

During the Jakob elevator incident in Mega Man X8, X is back once again investigating a crab-like Maverick in a forest. This time, he seems to have much more resolve for fighting, although there are times where he contemplates the need for peaceful resolutions. Along with Zero and Axl, he was able to travel to the Moon and stop Sigma and a new villain known as Lumine. This entailed plans to replace every Reploid with " New generation Reploids", which have a built in copy chip and are claimed to "go Maverick at will." However, the battle with Lumine left X dejected as his companion Axl was left comatose and the fact that the Reploid race would always be Mavericks. However with Zero's words, X is somewhat comforted and the duo returned to the Maverick Hunter base.

Mega Man Zero series

In the Mega Man Zero series, X plays a supporting role, similar to the role Doctor Thomas Light played in the Mega Man X Series. Having used his physical body to seal the Dark Elf after the Elf Wars a century ago, he exists as a Cyber Elf. Even though his body is not available to help Zero, he still has incredible power and can aid Zero information-wise. X's powers as a Cyber Elf are revealed a few times in the games; such as in the third game when Dr. Weil used the power of Omega and the Dark Elf to take control of all Reploids on Earth, X used his powers to protect the entire Resistance Base from being controlled as well (apparently, X and Zero were not affected by Omega or the Dark Elf, as they are not Reploids. It is said, though, that his only reason for existing as an elf outside his body was due to the fact that his original body was intact. Elpizo later destroyed this body and X now claims that he has only a little time left. In the booklet Vile's Incident, Cyber Elf X and Cyber Elf Phantom, are seen alongside the other guardians, watching Ragnarok fall apart. X's fate is unknown.

Weapons and abilities

Mega Man X is a powerful robot equipped with various abilities and powers to aid in his persucution of Mavericks and their threat to the peace and stability of the Earth. His most distinguished ability is the X-Buster, an arm cannon, that is able to transform from Mega Man X's arms to attack.

  • Super strength

Like most Reploids, X has strength well above the normal human capacity. He can lift in the proximity of several thousand pounds, although the exact maximum is never revealed in the games.

  • X-Buster

X's primary weapon is the X-Buster, described as Mega Buster Mark 17 in the first game. The X-Buster focuses energy from X's fusion reactor into a plasma bullet that causes physical damage upon impact.

  • Variable Weapons System

Like Mega Man before him, X has the ability to adapt the weapons systems of powerful Reploids that he has defeated into weapons he can use. These weapons come in many varieties, often providing additional mobility as well as offense. Of course, the Mega Man series convention of janken applies, and each boss character is weak to a different boss character's copied weapon.

  • Wall kick

X has the ability to cling to vertical surfaces (e.g. walls). On a wall, X normally slides downward slowly, but by kicking off the surface of the wall he can gain height, and even rebound back to the wall to climb it.

  • Emergency Acceleration System (Dash)

This ability is similar to Mega Man's slide maneuver in that it increases his speed, but unlike the slide, X is capable of using the ability to leap further than normal in a "dash jump," as well as dash from objects to which he is clinging. X first got the ability from the only mandatory capsule in the X series, in X1. He has apparently internalized the upgrade, although, in Maverick Hunter X, he can dash from the beginning. Inafune revealed that this is due to the fact that Maverick Hunter X is a remake of what X was supposed to be, and that X was originally intended to have the dash, but decided that, because players were already probably confused from the wall kick ability, having the dash too would probably either overwhelm players, or make them feel that it was too different from the original series. Some armor upgrades allow X to air dash, which is usually only used for puzzles, but can still be used as an evasive maneuver. In Mega Man X3, X is granted a choice of choosing one of four special upgrade chips, with one of the choices improving his dash, granting him the ability to air dash twice during a jump. In Mega Man X7 and X8, X can also air dash from the beginning, indicating that he has internalized this upgrade too.

Armor systems

Starting from X1, X could find capsules made by Dr. Light before he died (though it is hinted that he is still alive, or at least now an AI due to the fact that he can respond to questions, and is up to date on current events. It is also suggested that he has a helper, due to the fact that he can appear in places that weren't there when he was alive, like a tank) that carry either a helmet part, arms armor, new body armor, or legs armor. Starting from X4, different armor parts can be aqquired, though technically it would be X5, as the other armor in X4 was the ultimate armor, considered non-canon. Different armors possess different abilities, such as the Shadow armor which allows X to stick to walls, and the blade armor allowing X to dash greater distances. A hologram of Dr. Light greets X and explains the capabilities of the part in question before granting it to him.

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