Written for the Escapist Magazine, recreated in-part with permission.
To cut right to the chase: the most tragic aspect of Mighty No. 9 is that there is a good game scratching just below the surface of everything it tries to do. Unfortunately, these efforts rarely manage to breach the countless barriers that come between the game and a good experience, and while it seems like it could result in a good game, it will take work to get there.
Mighty No. 9 exists in a utopic, post-robotics future in which humans and robots coexist peacefully. The colors are bright, the cities are suitably science-fiction with spires and glass, and everything is happy. Without explanation or warning, all of the robots across the world suddenly rebel. Beck, the titular Mighty Number 9, is apparently one of the only robots who seems unaffected by the sudden surge of robotic insanity, and is tasked by his creator Dr. Will White to go out, find the source of the disturbance, and use his unique Xel assimilation abilities to undo the chaotic damage done to his peers, the Mighty Numbers 1 through 8.