Console: Super Nintendo
With a whopping six games released on the NES, the original Mega Man series was getting a bit stale by the early ‘90s. Mega Man X injected new life into the series with a more mature protagonist and faster gameplay that allowed him to dash and climb. Still, the basic combat and ability to choose which robot master to face next ensured that Mega Man X didn’t stray too far from its roots.
A ridiculous number of sequels have followed in the X series (and multiple other Mega Man subseries), and while X2 and X3 on the SNES are also fine games, there’s a very good argument to be made that Capcom still hasn’t surpassed the original Mega Man X as the best game in the entire franchise.