Mega Man Zero 4

Regardless of how closely one's daily routine is adhered to, it's difficult for anyone to imagine exactly what it would feel like to be Bill Murray's character in Groundhog Day, and to be forced to relive the same 24 hours over and over again.

Mega Man has probably got a better idea than most, though. Being an android, his entire existence appears to consist of preventing impending doom. The enemies may change, but the foundations of the games in which he stars remain the same.

Thankfully, they're pretty solid affairs. They're not exactly fancy; its 2D side-scrolling blasting of opponents before meeting an end of level boss can hardly be considered sophisticated by today's standards, but when such simple mechanics work, they're bombproof.

There is a bit more intricacy on offer this time around, though, specifically with regards to the ability to customise and upgrade Mega Man's skills throughout the adventure. This can either be done by assigning skill points to one of three capabilities or by assimilating body parts that have been dropped by enemies into performance-enhancing chips.

One novelty is the ability to steal an opponent's weapon, providing a little tactical diversity in an otherwise reasonably straightforward offering. Also intriguing is the option to change the weather before entering a stage as a method of making progress easier.

That aside, Mega Man Zero 4 doesn't represent much of a departure from its predecessors. The quality of the experience isn't in doubt – that's been firmly established by previous Mega Men - but anyone familiar with the series is bound to suffer bouts of deja-vu. Newcomers looking for thrills and challenge, however, won't be disappointed.

Mega Man Zero 4

Polished and highly competent, if a little too familiar for gaming veterans
Score