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Mega Man 3 is a traditional side-scrolling platformer: you jump from brick to brick while avoiding pits and shooting robots. It's quite similar, in all respects, to other Mega Man games; however, this is the first time that you get a sidekick. It's also the first time you're allowed to slide instead of merely walking.

Rush is your dog who helps out by offering other modes of transportation when you need it. He starts out with the 'Rush Coil' ability to launch you to the top of the screen like a springboard; later he acquires the 'Rush Jet' ability to turn into a guided, floating platform to carry you wherever you need to go; and he also gets the 'Rush Marine' ability which is a submarine that works just like the jet except underwater and with the added ability to hop around out of the water (you can actually jump while on the jet but the jet continues to hover beneath you whereas you stay inside the submarine). All of these abilities function just like boss weapons.

When you defeat the boss at the end of a level you gain his power - or at least a similar power. You may pause the game at any time and switch to any single power you have. It supplants your regular Arm Cannon with a limited - but superior - ability. The weapon ammo is displayed next to your energy meter. There are eight of these, corresponding to the eight main levels, even though there are twenty-one levels in the entire game.

Enemies will often supply you with both energy and ammo refills. You can also collect Energy Tanks which can only be used once but will entirely restore your health. You start the game with three lives. Other features include Surprise Boxes lying around for you to find. There are infinite continues and a password feature to resume play at the beginning of any level.


Mega Man 3 Arcade Shoot the frog head.
Mega Man 3 NES Spark Man's stage
Mega Man 3 Arcade Hard to shoot.
Mega Man 3 Arcade Jump up.

Promo Images

Mega Man 3 Screenshot
Mega Man 3 Screenshot
Mega Man 3 Screenshot
Mega Man 3 Magazine Advertisement Page 5

Alternate Titles

  • "Rockman Complete Works: Rockman 3: Dr. Wily's Time to Die!? " -- Japanese PlayStation title
  • "Rockman 3: Dr. Wily's Time to Die!?" -- Japanese title
  • "Rockman 3: Dr. Wily no Saigo!?" -- Japanese title
  • "Mega Man III" -- In-game title
  • "ロックマン3 Dr.ワイリーの最期!?" -- Japanese spelling

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

A true classic! NES David Bryan (25)
Mega Man is back, and so with new features. NES Bregalad (969)
The climax of Megaman Gameplay/Design on NES NES Jonathan Hollas (25)
One of the best NES games ever, and the best of the NES Mega Man games. NES CaptainCanuck (1065)
Arguably the best Regular Nintendo Mega Man NES Mr. Huh (112)
Mega Cool NES ETJB (480)

Critic Reviews

Joystick (French) NES Sep, 1992 93 out of 100 93 Wii May 16, 2013 18 out of 20 90
NES Times NES Nov 07, 2008 9 out of 10 90 (UK) Wii Nov 17, 2008 9 out of 10 90
Electronic Gaming Monthly (EGM) NES Oct, 1990 36 out of 40 90
Ultimate Nintendo: Guide to the NES Library NES 2016 4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars 90
Retro Archives NES Mar 16, 2022 17 out of 20 85
ASM (Aktueller Software Markt) NES Apr, 1992 10 out of 12 83
GamesCollection NES Jan 16, 2009 8 out of 10 80
Video Games NES May, 1992 74 out of 100 74


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Rockman 3 marked the appearance of nearly every standard to the Rockman formula: Rush the dog, Rockman's slide, Blues, and the occasional reappearance of old Wily Robots. Just remember though: that's most of the standards. Others like the Teleporter Room (go through eight teleporters and beat all the Wily Robots again) and Rock Buster appeared in Rockman 2 and Rockman 4, respectively.


Harumi Fujita was originally hired to compose the sound for this game, but could only compose the Gemini Man and Magnet Man themes and part of the Staff Roll theme before dropping off the project (and eventually leaving Capcom) to give birth. Her husband Yasuaki was then hired to complete the project. Harumi is credited in Special Thanks as "Mrs. Tarumi".

NES version

In the original NES version of this game, players could access secrets by plugging in a second controller. For example, if the player holds right on the second controller and presses A on the first controller, Mega Man will do a super jump, and if the player holds right on the second controller when falling into a pit, Mega Man won't lose a life. However, these codes cannot be used in the Rockman Complete Works, Mega Man: The Wily Wars, and Mega Man Anniversary Collection versions. The reasons are unclear, but it is likely that this was because a sort of debug mode was accidentally left in the final NES version.


According to publisher Capcom, Mega Man 3 has sold 1.08 million copies worldwide since its initial release (as of June 30, 2016).


  • Electronic Gaming Monthly
    • October 1990 (Issue 15) - Best Sequel to an Existing Game
    Information also contributed by Alexander Michel

    Related Web Sites

    • Howard & Nester do Mega Man 3 (A regular feature in Nintendo Power magazine, Howard & Nester was a comic strip about two game whizzes who would one-up each other, while disclosing hints and tips, in the settings of various recently-released games for the NES platform. In Volume 21's two-page installment, our heroes defend themselves (and Rush, the robot dog) from evil clone-robots, thanks to the Needleman boss' weapon.)
    • Mega Man Central (Information on all Mega Man games, including little known titles such as the PC series and Japan only games.)
    • OC ReMix Game Profile (Fan remixes of music from Mega Man 3.)
    Contributed to by GTramp (76603), Michael Cassidy (21113), Sciere (771505), Kabushi (257508), gamewarrior (5042) and Satoshi Kunsai (2074)
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