What do Iron Man, Wolverine and the Hulk have in common? If the "Marvel vs. Capcom" games are any indication, a deep-seated hatred of Capcom stars like Ryu, Morrigan and Chun-Li. The fighting series has seen several releases, but the most popular was the last, "Marvel vs. Capcom 2: New Age of Heroes," which launched in arcades back in 2000. After a successful downloadable re-release of that game on Xbox 360 and PS3, Capcom is plowing ahead with a full sequel, "Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds," due in spring 2011.
Like previous entries in the series, "Marvel vs. Capcom 3" will allow players to choose from a wide cast of characters from both the Marvel universe and the Capcom universe. Battles take place in various iconic locales and pit six fighters against each other in visually overwhelming skirmishes.
Unlike "Marvel vs. Capcom 2," the third game won't feature strictly two-dimensional graphics. In fact, all of the characters in the game will appear in 3-D, but will retain a specific art style that harks back to the games' comic book inspiration.
In a recent presentation, Seth Killian, who has been working on Capcom's fighting games for years and is a special advisor on "Marvel vs. Capcom 3," described the art style as a "living comic book." This comes through in the game's debut trailer, which features heavy contrasts and shadows to give an almost hand-drawn look (despite all the characters being rendered in 3-D). True to the series' roots, though, the actual gameplay will play from a single perspective, just like in "Street Fighter 4."
One of Capcom's goals for this release is to bring in new fans who have never touched a fighting game before but may be familiar with popular Marvel characters from the movies. Killian admits that this is a challenge, but the main focus for bringing in these new players will be accessibility. "The idea is to try to maintain the depth from all of the great fighting games we've done in the past, while also minimizing the complexity," he said.
The vast and varied array of characters are also a big part of the popularity of the "Marvel vs. Capcom" games, and the third entry will feature somewhere between 20 and 30 characters taken from the Marvel and Capcom universes. The trailer features appearances by Ryu, Wolverine, Iron Man, Hulk, Morrigan and a newcomer to the series, Chris Redfield, of the "Resident Evil" franchise. The trailer also hints at other characters that haven't been officially confirmed.
Fighting fans have been waiting a decade for a new "Marvel vs. Capcom" game to release. Unfortunately, they'll have to be patient for another year. Hopefully, it'll be worth the wait.
For more on "Marvel vs. Capcom 3," head on over to Multiplayer.MTV.com.
Which characters are you hoping to see in "Marvel vs. Capcom 3"? Talk about it in the comments below.