Megaman X5 takes place in the year 21XX, where the Reploid Wars have ended and the world is at peace, until a terrorist group takes over the lunar colony known as Eurasia and sets it on a crash course with Earth. Mega Man X and Zero are asked to deal with Eurasia and the tools that they are given are a decrepit laser cannon known as the Enigma Cannon, and an incomplete space shuttle. In order to use the Enigma Cannon and space shuttle, Zero and Mega Man X have to go to several locations and ask for help from the owners of the items necessary to repair the Enigma Cannon and space shuttle. Unfortunately, all of these Reploids have been infected with the Sigma virus and are hell-bent on preventing Zero and X from getting the items they need.
As with X4, you begin the game with a choice of who you want to play as. Picking X or Zero to play the opening Eurasia stage can change the ending of the game, so choose wisely. Unlike X4, however, after you finish the opening tutorial stage, you can go into the Maverick stages with either X or Zero, so you aren't making such a difficult choice at the beginning. Each stage has multiple obstacles that are exclusive to that stage, and usually have more than one section to them.
Parts are obtained from various Reploids that you save as well as from enemies you kill. These parts will enhance X or Zero's performance, and while some are exclusive to either X or Zero, most of them can be shared between the two.
One of the new mechanics to this game is the ability to save injured Reploids that are trapped in each of the 8 Maverick stages. There are many benefits to rescuing them, such as restoring your lost energy, getting extra lives, and even getting some sweet parts.
Another new addition to this game is the freedom in how you want to play through it. The only stages you are required to play are the opening Eurasia stage, and the four Sigma stages. That's right, you can skip right past the Maverick levels, although the last levels will be significantly harder without any parts, armors, or extra weapons obtained from those levels.
After each boss is slain you obtain a new move for Zero and X. For X, it is usually some sort of projectile weapon fired from his arm cannon, while Zero's are all new Z Saber attacks and increased jumping ability. Every ability for X and a few for Zero cost energy, which can be found throughout the levels, either dropped by downed enemies or placed in predetermined locations. Most of the upgrade capsules require you to use these ability in creative ways.
ArmorsFor the first time in the X series, Mega Man X5 has more than one set of armor to find. However, X cannot use just one piece of armor like previous games. He must have all four pieces to be able to use the armor at all. The abilities of each set of armor go as follows:
- Fourth Armor: The full suit of armor from X4, hence it's name. This will only be available to you if you play through the tutorial stage as X, as if you play through it as Zero, it will be damaged beyond repair and you will only have the ability to play as normal X until you find the Falcon, Gaea, or Ultimate armor for him. It can air dash, hover in the air for a short time, and fire a powerful charged buster shot. It can also charge Maverick weapons.
- Falcon Armor: The Falcon Armor has the ability to fly in any direction for a short period of time, making it incredibly useful for getting hard-to-reach upgrades. It can also do a convential air-dash, and has a armor-piercing charged shot that covers a much smaller area than the other charged shots available in this game.
- Gaea Armor: The Gaea Armor gives X the ability to climb and walk on spikes, stick to walls, and gives X a very powerful charged shot that can break through certain walls. The downside to this armor is that it moves and dashes slowly, and has a short range on it's charged shot. It is basically only useful for finding certain upgrades that basically require that you use it.
- Ultimate Armor: The Ultimate Armor give X a very powerful charged shot similar to the Fourth Armor, the ability to hover in mid-air, an air-dash, and gives X the "Giga Crush" attack, which rockets him forward, damaging enemies and bosses more than their respective weaknesses, thus making the final boss incredibly easy if you have it.
Weakness: Spike Ball/Twin Dream
Weapon: G-Shaver (X) F-Splasher (Zero)
Weapon: Tri-Thunder (X) E-Blade (Zero)
Weapon: F-Laser (X) C-Flasher (Zero)
|Weapon: Dark Hold|
Weapon: Wing Spiral (X) W-Shredder (Zero)
Weakness: Dark Hold
Weapon: Ground Fire (X) Quake Blazer (Zero)
Weakness: Wing Spiral/W-Shredder
Weapon: Spike Ball (X) Twin Dream (Zero)
Weakness: Ground Fire/Quake Blazer
- In the North American version of the game, each of the Mavericks was named after a different member of the band Guns 'n Roses.
In 2005 Capcom released a 5-disc box set called Capcom Music Generation Rockman X1~6. It contains the original music of Mega Man X through Mega Man X6 as well as some unused tracks. Mega Man X5 tracks span the entire fourth disc and includes some unreleased tracks. The track listing is as follows:
|3.||OPENING STAGE X||2:25|
|4.||OPENING STAGE ZERO||2:32|
|6.||STAGE SELECT 1||1:22|
|8.||CRESCENT GRIZZLY STAGE||2:25|
|9.||VOLT KRAKEN STAGE||2:30|
|10.||SHINING HOTARUNICUS STAGE||2:36|
|11.||TIDAL MAKKOEEN STAGE||2:09|
|13.||STAGE CLEAR X||0:08|
|14.||SPIRAL PEGACION STAGE||2:19|
|15.||SPIKE ROSERED STAGE||2:47|
|16.||DARK NECROBAT STAGE||2:58|
|17.||BURN DINOREX STAGE||2:58|
|19.||STAGE CLEAR ZERO||0:07|
|21.||ZERO STAGE 1||3:18|
|24.||ZERO STAGE 2||3:27|
|25.||X vs ZERO||2:43|
|29.||STAGE SELECT 2||2:05|
|31.||UNUSED TRACK "STAGE SELECT"||1:13|
|32.||UNUSED TRACK "DEEP SEA"||2:26|
|33.||UNUSED TRACK "Dr.RIGHT"||1:16|
|34.||UNUSED TRACK "MISSION REPORT"||0:53|
|35.||UNUSED TRACK "ARMAGEDON"||1:12|
|36.||UNUSED TRACK "ZERO DEAD"||1:16|