Dr. Wily is assumed to be dead after his crushing
defeat in the end of Mega Man 3
. (Groan. I know—bad pun.) A new scientist enters the scene to take Wily’s place after an entire year of peace. This new scientist, Dr. Cossack, claims to be angered at Mega Man and his creator for always overshadowing his own robotic creations. Of course, in reality Dr. Cossack’s daughter Kalinka was being held hostage by the all-too-alive Dr. Wily, who forces Cossack to (attempt to) destroy Mega Man in return for Kalinka’s safety. Luckily for Dr. Cossack, Proto Man frees Kalinka before long—this is lucky because the scientist would never have stood up to the might of Mega Man!
This game introduces the Mega Buster, a great new invention which allows Mega Man to charge up energy before firing. A fully-powered Mega Buster shot is equivalent to three normal shots, but if you only power up to the first level, the shot isn’t any more powerful at all—just bigger!
Mega Man 4
marks the first game where the passwords don’t save your Energy Tanks. You’ll have to go back and get them each time. Try Skull Man’s world for this.
This will take you to Cossack’s castle (as far as the passwords will go, sorry).
You can find hidden energy here if you know where to look.
The Pharaoh Shot has a few nifty “features” (AKA bugs) which were overlooked during the game testing. Namely, as Procyon Lotor
pointed out, you can use it without actually draining any of its energy. Try some of these things:
- Equip the Pharaoh Shot and you can charge up at any time, even before a major battle, while your enemy is busy filling up its energy meter. (This isn’t the case with the Mega Buster.)
- Charge up the weapon so that a giant ball of energy forms over Mega Man’s head. Hit something with it, then switch to the sub screen without letting go of the fire button. Keep holding the button down as you switch back to the game. The shot will begin to charge up again all over again, without any loss of weapon energy.
- Use this technique against Dr. Wily to defeat him more easily. Whenever he appears, jump up and hit him with the ball over Mega Man’s head, then use the above trick to get the ball back without losing energy. This way you never have to worry about running out of Pharaoh Shot energy in the midst of the battle.
- Some minor enemies will not cause the ball to disappear at all. Use this to your advantage. Find a spot where enemies are coming in high (like the homing missiles that the Hippo fires) and simply stand there, letting the enemies hit the ball and drop their power-ups directly onto Mega Man. Stick a chair leg on the fire button and go eat dinner. When you come back you’ll have full energy and a ton of 1-Ups. (Thanks to OmegaWarrior for this bit.)
- One interesting glitch: If you’re charging up the Pharaoh Shot, you leave the ball behind when you die. I defeated a boss after perishing once because it walked into the ball that had been left sitting in space. Of course the victory didn’t count, but...
This was one of the first games where Wily’s fortress blows sky high, but certainly not the last.
The cloud resulting from the explosion is in the shape of a skull...
a cute joke that’s a little overused later on...
oh well. Basically, Dr. Wily begs for a bit, then alarms start going off. Wily jumps up and escapes through a secret door. Mega Man teleports out. Then you see the fortress from the outside—Wily’s saucer flies away just in time for the castle to kabooom!
Mega Man rides home on top of a monorail car (he always rides on top...saves fare, I guess!). He has his helmet off the entire time. Rush and Roll meet him when he arrives at his “stop” and the screen freezes there. Credits scroll (to Mega Man’s theme song again!). At the end, Eddie appears to toss out the letters that spell CAPCOM. Then he stands there blinking until you hit RESET or turn off the power.