Navi forms varied from series to series. In the Sinister Six's story the Navi Forms are like Vampires, spread through biting or effective attacks. Alcohol is like holy water, although only Life Virus was destroyed by it outright. Once infected they obey Life Virus and have some mental connection to him.
When the Mechs returned in Series 4 and until Series 5 Navi Forms enabled the Mechs to physically transform into Net Navis and enter cyberspace. Only there were they became Net Navis with access to all their equivalent powers. At first only Shadowman (Gauntlet) and Topman (Nightmare) had Navi Forms, but as the series went on the rest of the team and most of their enemies gained them as well, to the point where they could simply download them from an anonymous source.
In Series 6 Navi forms changed dramatically thanks to "technological innovations." At this point a robot's mind jacks into Cyberspace as opposed to physically entering it leaving their bodies practically helpless somewhere as their mind roams the net.
After Series 6 Navi forms would become incompatible with current technology effectively writing them out of the series. Although almost every regular hero and villain had a Navi form Gemini and Hardman never actually received one.
As you might expect the powers of Navi Forms mirror the basic powers of those found in the games. When in doubt they have the attacks their classic game counterparts have.
Series Information Edit
Navi Forms had their start in the Sinister Six's series and bled into the Mechs' team as well as their villains. Every time they were introduced it was really as a unique, separate thing unconnected to each other.
In "Sinister Six.EXE" Wily creates a robot version of the EXE series' Life Virus who, as usual for Wily's creations in the epilogues, decides to betray Wily and take over the world for himself. Here Life Virus can create "Executable Robot Masters" who obey his commands and can infect other robots. Bass is his first victim as he's infected while trying to protect Dr. Wily (who's then locked in his closet). In short order the Mechs, Cossack's Creations, the Tech Tyrants, Super Chaos, and Classi Cal (aka Forte Chan) are all infected by Life Virus. One by one the Sinister Six are infected until only Cutman (Jason) is left. It turns out the EXE Robots are vulnerable to alcohol and Cut uses a whiskey coated Rolling Cutter to destroy Life Virus, freeing everyone from his control and reverting them to their original selves.
Navi Forms appear once more in the Mechs' Series 3 "Executable Execution." In the series 2 finale the Mechs sacrificed their base - the Technodrome - to stop Unicron from destroying their planet. The result gave them Transmetal Armours, but it also gave Sharkman a Navi form. Naturally he had the ability to turn compatible robots into Navis (in other words robots who had counterparts in Battle Network 1, so Shadowman and most of the Megaman 1 robots) and who would obey his commands (sort of). Desiring a peaceful solution the two sides decided to settle things with a poker match - Needlegal VS Elecman (Andon). Although Elec wound up winning the Mechs had given everyone Valium-laced beverages, putting them all to sleep while Sparkman (Sean) sucked the power out of Elecman, rendering him unconscious. Sean quickly restored everyone to their usual selves while they're out. Sharkman is shocked people didn't want to be a part of his team and resolves to form a team with willing volunteers. After the story Shadowman and Topman (Nightmare / Spinning Demon) become Shadowman and Gutsman.EXE respectively. Together they become the team known as Viral Infection. To have their cake and eat it too Shadowman and Topman created copies of their personalities to function as their Navi counterparts while they were away.
The adventures of Viral Infection are lost to the sands of time. The Mechs returned in Series 4's "Return of a Maniac." During a house party Viral Infection, having been completely taken over by Life Virus (along with most of Monsteropolis) attacked the team, as it was the only one left unaffected. During the battle Topman and Shadowman absorbed their copies, their Transmetal Armours creating an anti-virus to counteract the infection. Using their, even though they were outnumbered, the Mechs easily overcame Viral Infection, deleting their Navi forms once and for all (much to Raijin's chagrin). However, since Shadow and Top had absorbed their copies, as opposed to them just being destroyed, they retained the ability to become Navis
Navi forms, at this point, made their corresponding robots change into Net Navis and gave them the ability to physically enter cyberspace in their Net Navi forms.
In the Series 4 finale it's revealed that the Decepticons had captured Life Virus and dismantled it and it's minions (so they killed it) and enhanced it's programs with Evil Energy in a bid to corrupt Optimus Prime and control the world. Naturally the Mechs defeated them (and Bizarro Shadowman, who had turned into a virus himself at this point) in no small part thanks to the Navi Forms Shadow and Top retained.
EXE forms returned in "Evil Execution: The Evil Eight" where Wily gave the Evil Eight their own Navi forms to destroy the Mechs then-current base - the Ark and it's computer Teletran One. Knowing that only Shadow and Top had Navi Forms the Evil Eight held the advantage of numbers. Unknown to them Capcom released a new EXE game, so all the Mechs except for Hard and Gemini could download their corresponding Net Navi forms (maybe Doctor Light made them in-universe? Sure.) Shadow.EXE and Guts.EXE log in to challenge the E8. Gemini stayed behind to monitor the systems, and the rest of the Mechs sent their consciousness online to purchase their own Navi Forms using a Pulse-transmission Gemini just happened to have bought so they could log in Navi style without having their own Navi forms. During the adventure Topman's Gutsman.EXE form was deleted and replaced with Topman.EXE (which he hated).
In an adventure unconnected with the Mechs, the Sinister Six PC gained their own Navi forms ... of a sort. In "The Sinister Six EXE Strikes Back" the Six are on a search for Oilman and they've all somehow wound up in AXE's reality. There they "jack in" their minds which creates Navi Forms of their own, which are manifestations of their consciousness in a way that can interact with the world they've found themselves in. There they run afoul of Sparkman of Darklight Mercenaries.
The last time we see Navi Forms is in Series 6's "The Rivalry." At this point The Mechs can no longer simply enter the virtual world thanks to "technological innovations." As the Evil Eight and the Wily Rescue Force have a showdown to see which is Wily's superior force RPD HQ is attacked in the virtual world. The Mechs log in, all now having Navi Forms. It's shown that Snakeman has changed his Navi Form to Skullman.EXE, in a homage to his Viral Infection days. Shadowman says they'll delete Skull.EXE after the adventure is over. They have a small encounter with the Sinister Six PC.EXE (who have installed a control program in the Special forces Units which would come into play over a decade later) and fight the Evil Eight.EXE.
|The Sinister Six|
|The Mechanical Maniacs|
|The Evil Eight|
|The Sinister Six|