Quite possibly the best anniversary present ever.

Street Fighter‘s 25th anniversary is coming to a close, and Mega Man‘s is just about to begin. This is a tricky situation, because giving too much attention to one franchise and not enough to the other could upset the fans and leave Capcom with something of a mess on their hands. So, how does one avoid this issue? By combining the two in a single game and calling it Street Fighter X Mega Man, of course.

The story behind Street Fighter X Mega Man is a fascinating one: Hardcore fan Seow Zong Hui approached Capcom’s Christian Svensson with a rough build of the game at this year’s EVO. Svensson liked the game, as did other Capcom employees. They decided to work with Hui on completing the game and releasing it to the public, and the rest is history.

Being that it’s a 2D platformer (with 8-bit graphics, no less), Street Fighter X Mega Man draws most of its inspiration from the Mega Man franchise. But all eight levels in the game are themed after Street Fighter, and each one ends with a boss from the series. Think you have what it takes to defeat Ryu in an epic 2D showdown? Now’s your chance to find out! If he (or anyone else) proves to be too challenging, though, you can always equip one of the eight new power-ups available to Mega Man in the game.

Street Fighter X Mega Man

Mega Man hasn’t had the best time these past few years, what with the cancelation of Mega Man Legends 3 and his lack of appearance in Marvel vs. Capcom 3 – but if this game is any indication, the next year should be much kinder to him. In any case, Street Fighter X Mega Man will be available free of charge from the Capcom Unity site on December 17.