(a.k.a., Launcher Octopuld)
One of Sigma's eight Maverick/Irregular reploid commanders in Capcom's 1993 Mega Man X Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) video game. Prior to joining Sigma's rebellion against their human masters, (a choice he made largely out of vanity as he felt the conflict would give him the chance to prove the sublime beauty of his aquatic fighting style), Launch Octopus served honorably in the 6th Fleet where he was close friends with the similarly-designed reploid Volt Kraken/Squid Adler (another Irregular that appears in Mega Man X5). Launch Octopus weighs 348 lbs (157.9 kg) and stands 7.8 ft (2.4 m) tall. His base of operations is a biomechanical coral reef, located near an underwater city (in addition to his own level, Launch Octopus also reappears later, during the third Sigma Fortress stage, for a rematch). Naturally, he has a host of unpleasant marine-themed robots under his command (water striders, tortoises, sea horses, a pair of large angler fish, a submarine, ravenous sunfish, and twin giant eels).
Should one breach all of his considerable defenses, they'll find themselves dealing with the eight-limbed wonder himself. Launch Octopus has two projectile attacks at his disposal: The primary one, miniature torpedoes, are housed in both of his shoulder modules. These can be fired three at a time (one salvo from each shoulder), explode on impact, and automatically reload themselves almost instantly. The second, mechanical piranhas, are ejected from the tips of his tentacles in pairs. These rapidly swim towards their target and proceed to rip the victim apart with their titanium teeth. Not one for conserving ammunition, Launch Octopus often lets both varieties fly at once, in generous quantities, creating a wall of crisscrossing missiles that is almost impossible to evade unscathed. By spinning his body rapidly, Launch Octopus can create a powerful vortex around himself that sucks an opponent into his waiting grasp (the resulting column of water also has the added benefit of deflecting any incoming gunfire, protecting Launch Octopus for the duration of this maneuver). Should his prey fail to escape this whirling suction, Launch Octopus will capture the unfortunate victim in the vice-like grip of his tentacles and slowly begin to drain their energy away (healing himself in the process if he's taken any damage). Aided by the buoyancy of salt water, the reploid can also leap tremendous distances.
Launch Octopus, while a dangerous foe, can be seriously harmed by one of his Maverick comrade's special abilities and, even worse, permanently crippled by the weapon of yet another Irregular. Physical contact with the energy field generated by Armored Armadillo's 'Rolling Shield' triggers Launch Octopus' arsenal to uncontrollably fire. Normally, this would only result in wasted ammunition, but because the Rolling Shield also functions as a barrier, the live torpedoes cannot escape their tubes and detonate inside Launch Octopus' body, causing horrific damage to his internal circuitry. Additionally, Boomer Kuwanger's 'Boomerang Cutter' weapon can amputate Launch Octopus' tentacles with a mere three strikes. Without those prehensile appendages, this aquatic Maverick loses most of his offensive capabilities and effectiveness. Needless to say, possessing one, or both, of said weapons, prior to engaging him, is highly desirable.
Defeating Launch Octopus will net you the 'Homing Torpedo' as a reward--these smart missiles will come in handy for blasting enemies in hard to reach places (and will also really ruin Boomer Kuwanger's day if you use them on him--one gets the impression that the robotic octopus and insect have it in for each other, no?). If you charge it up before firing (assuming you have the X-Buster upgrade that is), you'll get those lovely piranhas instead of torpedoes. Interestingly enough, the 2001 Game Boy Color version of the mechanical cephalopod, found in Mega Man Xtreme 2, coughs up the 'M.Tornado' instead, a weapon that creates vortex columns (unfortunately, you don't get to play vampire with anything you snag in it like Launch Octopus does when he uses it).
Newsprint, tissue paper, white paper, white glue, hot glue, wire twist ties, colored pencil, ink, and acrylic paint.
(* For simplicity's sake, the tentacles are excluded from the measurements give, except where specifically indicated otherwise.)
4.3 cm/1.7 in. x 7.2 cm/2.8 in. (widest point x highest point)
Maximum horizontal tentacle span: 16.9 cm/6.7 in.
Forty-nine points total: Tentacles (42; 6 in each of the four "lesser" ones, 9 in each of the two "greater" ones), waist, hips (2), knees (2), and ankles (2).
Eight days; June 9-18, 2009 (no work was performed on 12 or 13).
Note: Sometimes I don't make my figures to scale with one another,
that's why Launch Octopus is so small compared to the other four.
For comparison purposes, below are several images of Launch Octopus taken from various Mega Man X media (more information on mouse-over).
(In no particular order of importance.)
- Mega Man X Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) video game.
- Mega Man Xtreme 2 Gameboy Color video game.
- Wikipedia List of Mavericks article.
- Mega Man Home Page Mega Man X information/strategy/review.
- Various GameFAQs Mega Man X game guides.
- Google image search.
- Gamepro Magazine. Volume 6. January, 1994. Infotainment World, Inc.
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The background graphic is Launch Octopus' stage picture from the Mega Man X Maverick/Irregular selection screen.