10 years later...
It has taken 10 years for Marvel Vs Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds, to show up. Fans have been crying out for a sequel for a while now and they've got one, the only problem is that CAPCOM seems to have made some omissions on the character roster, going from 56 to 36 has upset some people and some of their picks are less than stellar according to fan feedback.
All I know is that the game is fun, fast, frenetic and totally imbalanced compared to Street Fighter 4 and that's what makes it a blast to play. When you get a good brawl out of this one you really feel as though you've accomplished something special, beating the AI or human opponents. So here we go, the obligatory bottom line is: buy this if you're not made of stone like the Thing and as heartless as Albert Wesker.
There's this rift right, it's been opened and now the conflict between comics and video game characters has begun again. It's completely over the top and who plays these games for a deep and engaging story anyways - enough about that, onto the brawling!
Button bashing combos and quick thinking are the order of the day here, unless you're playing the overpowered Dr. Doom or Sentinel, then you can spam projectile attacks and go hide in a corner like many human opponents seem to want to do online. For shame, that's right, I'm looking at you gamers...you and your cheap shot tactics. You too Iron Man...I can see you in your tin can armour with those repulsor beams.
Now I've got that out of the way, you can expect to learn the moves through a robust and effective Training Mode (packed with options and even latency simulation). You can get to grips with the characters here and grab a roster of bone-crunching tactics before you go out and face real battles. You can also play mission mode where you can compete in challenges to get a high score, perform combos and so on. Talking of those real battles, CAPCOM has borrowed a little from SF 4 in many ways, it's also changed the pacing of the game, and it's really fast and fun with blistering combos and punishing attacks.
3v3 mode has made a return and this just makes things even more insane!
There's a slew of unlockables, content, characters, artwork and so on. So if you're an unlock completist there's going to be a lot of content here for you to delve into.
You can play offline, or you can go onto Xbox Live and hammer out your battles in Ranked and Player matches. However there's an Arcade mode for you to go at in single player, but CAPCOM hasn't won over many fans with their underwhelming outro-endings for this mode, since they ditched the lavish 3d graphics cinematic style for a comic-book flip-page static and very dry ending for each character.
Controls remain similar to Street Fighter 4 and won't take you long to learn, mastering them on the other hand - that's a whole new ball game.
Back in 3d (or a mix of 2d and 3d) the graphics are bold, comic like and colourful. They are eye-bendingly grand in the cinematic intros and suitably effective in game. The powers and sequences are a visual feast for your already overloaded eyes and brain. It's good stuff. The character designs are excellent and there's a lot of detail on the various Marvel and Capcom characters, especially with the likes of Deadpool, Iron Man and Wolverine in the fray. Each character has been expertly culled from its source material and brought into the game perfectly.
Fast and fluid, the animations in the game are another area where it excels. It's robust character animation system and combat moves bring the battles to life superbly. I really love some of the set-piece flash animations for the various super combos and high powered attacks. There's a lot of character to those as well as the characters signature moves and personalities, Dante is as cocky as one might expect in all of his animations.
It's hard to talk about Physics in the fighting game genre, they're there and they're under the hood mostly - you can see them in action when you perform various high power moves. There's not much else I can truly say.
The game's AI has various levels of difficulty, and it is pretty much a pushover on the easier levels. Up the ante though and you'll have to work harder to win. The AI can do all sorts of moves that would leave your fingers in a twist and knows how to pull them off at the speed of the CPU.
MVC3 FTW has some great sound, from bone thumping combos to the woosh and swoosh of Storm's ice attack special move, it's all here.
There's a techno-theme soundtrack that evokes the comic and video game style of the genre perfectly, some solid mixes and remixes will delight any arcade music fan.
Some great voice acting provided by the stalwarts of the video and cartoon industry, married to good dialogue and snappy writing. Nothing to complain about here.
Xbox Live Ranked and Player matches. There's some latency issues when the bars don't stack up but for most of the time, it runs perfectly and gives a great game to all the players involved.
Ha Do Ken!
The game has changed significantly from the last, in a good way I feel. The speed is constant and it's fast and furious, just the kind of thing you need from a brawler. It's a fantastic looking game and the 3d shift hasn't marred the experience at all. The control scheme has altered too and whilst there's a lot of mileage and depth here, you'll need to go online/external to find all the awesome combos and moves you can do, since the game isn't giving away any secrets barring a few moves in Mission mode.
It is worth a buy if you're a fan, or if you're a fan of brawling games in general. This is one of the best mashups to date.