In less than a month, a gaming event that has hardly existed as more than a pipe dream from dedicated fans for the better part of a decade will finally hit store shelves, and the hellacious hurricane of hype will no doubt empty said shelves faster than one can make a tired joke about mustaches and tubular potato chips. If it wasn’t already clear I am of course speaking of Capcom’s Marvel Vs Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds. As of January 29th, 38 characters have been confirmed, split evenly between each company. Two of these characters are DLC. While there are allegedly a few more character announcements coming in the near future (#mce_temp_url#), I decided to enlist the aid of fellow RoboAwesome staffer Jessie Moore to offer a few thoughts on the current lineup in MvC 3. I’ll be waxing nostalgic about the characters on the Capcom side of the field, while Jessie, being more of a fan of Marvel(I’m more of a DC Comics guy), will comment on what he thinks about the Marvel reveals.
The first thing I have to touch base on is how excited I am about Arthur, Haggar, and Hsien-Ko. Capcom reaching back into some of their older classic franchises (compared to, say, Tatsunoko Vs Capcom) is absolutely heartwarming. Especially Arthur. While the Ghosts ‘n Goblins franchise hasn’t really gone away, considering the recent entries on the PSP and iOS, it is fair to say these games haven’t really been in the spotlight. But as a fan of the arcade classics, seeing Arthur painstakingly crafted into a fighting game system in a way that is completely (and hilariously) accurate to the G ‘n G gameplay style just piles on to my excitement for the game. Not to mention the fact that Arthur’s theme music is one of the best arrangements of the G ‘n G level one theme I’ve ever had the pleasure of listening to (and I’ve come across quite a few).
Arthur looks perfect! Hopefully he'll also be good.
Haggar is a dream come true; ever since Final Fight characters started popping up in the Street Fighter series, fans have been clamoring for an appearance by the most badass mayor in the history of the profession. His play style looks perfect for the character: not too fast but agile enough to keep up with the Capcom Versus style while still being a formidable grappler, and amusing references to the brawlers of old. Haggar brandishes an enormous pipe during some of his combos, and his spinning lariat technique even drains some of his health! His inclusion is most likely an effort to promote Final Fight: Double Impact, but it would be great if more Final Fight action of some sort is in the works.
Mad Gear was defeated, may as well piledrive Iron Man.
Darkstalkers is probably the most under-appreciated fighter under Capcom’s belt, and it’s wonderful to see characters other than Morrigan and Felicia getting some love. Another character from the franchise has been long overdue, and Hsien-Ko looks like a blast to play. Her lack of mobility may be tough for less skilled players, but her wide array of goofy moves are both a joy to watch in motion and they look very useful and versatile. Like with Final Fight, here’s to hoping Hsien-Ko’s inclusion means that something is in store for the Darkstalkers franchise. It’s well-known that Yoshinori Ono, current producer of the Street Fighter franchise, has been pushing for a new entry in the series. Hopefully fans will respond favorably to this character and make some noise!
Holy crap, Darkstalkers has characters that aren't Morrigan? No way!
There are a few inclusions I’m not very happy with, or rather, unenthusiastic about. Trish, from the Devil May Cry series, sticks out like a sore thumb. She was never very interesting in those games, and the same rings true of her presence in MvC 3. Sure, it’s great to have another female character, but she’s, well, boring. She uses a sword and projectiles of some sort, similar to Dante, but she lacks all of the flavor and personality that he has. If another DMC character was really needed, Lady would’ve been a much better choice. She was a lot more fun.
Another thing that bothers me, on a much more fanboyish and superficial level, are the character design choices for Jill Valentine and Spencer. Resident Evil used to be one of my favorite franchises in gaming, before the series went from being an awesome, cheesy, but somehow still legitimately scary B-horror flick tribute to another action shooter. As a huge fan of the remake of the first game released on the Gamecube, Jill was my favorite character. Seeing the awful mess Capcom made of her character in Resident Evil 5 was a very disappointing experience for me, and having that version of her in MvC 3 instead of the far superior designs of RE 1 and/or 3 makes me very sad, and almost unwilling to try her out when the DLC comes. On a similar note, I have to wonder what possessed Capcom to use the design of Spencer from the disappointing Bionic Commando “reboot” from 2009 instead of the one from the much more successful Bionic Commando Rearmed series, especially considering the upcoming sequel is due out in the same month as this game.
Since Jill Valentine and Shuma-Gorath are joining the roster as post-release DLC, quite a bit of speculation exists on whether or not Capcom is planning additional downloadable content beyond those two characters. It would be great if that were true, and personally, if I could pick any game franchise from Capcom’s history to be represented after the fact, I’d have to pick a character from the Breath of Fire series. Sure, the series is more or less dead in the water at this point, but most of the games are considered must haves, especially the third entry, which was even ported to the PSP (in Europe and Japan). Ryu or Nina, the mainstays of the series, would both be fun additions, and since they’re quite different in each game, Capcom would have plenty of options to work with for implementation. It also probably goes without saying that Ryu’s transformations would make for ridiculously awesome hyper combos.
Now that we have more information on most of the characters involved with the new Marvel Vs Capcom 3 we’d like to give our two cents on them. As for the Marvel side, I am overall happy with the characters chosen. You have the obvious staples: Spider-Man, Captain America, Wolverine, Hulk, Iron Man, and Doctor Doom of course. Some of the new additions are pretty interesting. Deadpool, I believe, is the most anticipated character. One of the funniest guys in Marvel is sure to have many a quip and will certainly talk back to the players themselves. I am curious to see if his rapid regeneration will have an effect on the game. Super-Skrull will be interesting for sure. Another Fantastic Four villain to play with will be neat for sure. I am curious as to how his moves will work. Having all the Fantastic Four abilities in one character may cause trouble for his opponent. It’s good to see Taskmaster get some love; I have not seen that name since I first started playing HeroClix. In the comics he can copy fighting styles just by seeing them, so I wonder if that will have anything to do with how he functions in the game.
Super Skrull and Taskmaster's powers will certainly make things interesting.
A few names I am scratching my head at. Dormammu for one. Who the F is that guy? Is he some sort of Doctor Strange villain no one cares about? M.O.D.O.K. confuses me as well. I can’t even fathom what made him so appealing. Shuma-Gorath is coming back as DLC, so now we have that wacky tentacle monster no one cares about. Maybe it’s just me, but no one I know has ever said “Oh man Shuma-Gorath is so cool!” Finally we have X-23. Somehow related to Wolverine. Her claim to fame was a comic series called NYX(Which was awesome and shouldn’t have been canceled). She eventually got her own run, but she’s not worth my time personally.
I have to say, the foot claws are kind of weird.
Capcom definitely has room to add more characters before release or eventually have DLC for them. At least they better! Leaving Gambit out is a crime against nature! I do think a few good ideas for DLC would have to include The Thing. Can you imagine using your special and hearing him say “IT’S CLOBBERIN’ TIME!” That would be epic! Sure, he’d probably be a Hulk clone, but I honestly don’t give a crap about the Hulk. Speaking of Fantastic Four, Mr. Fantastic would be great for people used to playing as Dhalsim. Silver Surfer would be a pretty neat addition too. Iron Fist would also be a GREAT addition. He does not get enough love at all.
I think overall Capcom has a good grasp on what they are doing. The look of the game is very enticing and I really can’t wait to start playing, even though I am relatively lousy at fighting games.