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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Marvel vs. Capcom 3: The Fate of Two Worlds Review

“In this corner, from Raccoon City…” Resident Evil’s favorite sons face off with comic book spandex

Chad Hamilton

Fireballs? Check. Razor claws? Check. Shotgun and Desert Eagle? Double-check. Fans of the tried and tested fighting series, Marvel vs. Capcom, can now rejoice. The ultimate in pixel pounding, two-dimensional take downs is back! With newly defined graphics, over-the-top super moves and fan boys’ dream of characters, is Marvel vs. Capcom 3 (MvC3) going to rock the two worlds? Or will it doom them and the series once and for all?

With a thinly veiled storyline involving Marvel Comics’ supervillain Doctor Doom and Resident Evil’s antagonist Albert Wesker, MvC3 brings superheroes, supervillains, succubi and giant robots together in battle. While zombie fans will recall the surprisingly formidable Jill Valentine in previous incarnations, they will initially only find Chris Redfield and Wesker himself as options to play. Valentine is reported to be available later via downloadable content. Comic fans will enjoy playing as Spiderman, the Hulk, Wolverine or Captain America to name a few. Capcom players can get into the armor of Arthur from Ghosts ‘n Goblins, Ryu from Street Fighter and an ensemble of other characters from the company’s repertoire.

The graphics are beautiful. From Redfield’s ginormous biceps to Wesker’s sleek leather uniform, the look and style of Marvel vs. Capcom 3 is worth pausing the game just to enjoy the look. Resident Evil fans will quickly notice the background for the level where your team of three characters must battle their opponents in the laboratory of TriCell, Resident Evil 5’s evil corporation. When combos are chained, they literally shatter the glass holding areas of Lickers crawling in the background. For that extra touch of zombie, the level of Ghosts ‘n Goblins features sharply generated undead that old school Nintendo players will recognize. The sounds are full of enough crashes, clashes and splash page effects to put players in the panels of their favorite comic book. However, many of the glib and enjoyable sound bites are lost amidst the roar of repulsor rays and flamethrowers.

Gameplay is well done. While previous versions in the series featured complicated maneuvers, MvC3 allows for some simple and quickly performed attacks. Wesker’s hyperspeed assault is good but watching Redfield unload nearly every weapon from the RE arsenal is worth saving up the combo meter. He hits the unsuspecting foe with the shotgun, several handguns and the crowd-pleasing, undead clearing rocket launcher.

Zombie factor?

MvC3 has a low zombie factor. There was initial discussion by the game’s developers to include Tyrant and Nemesis from Resident Evil’s first and third entries. However, there was concern that the nature of the monstrosities would have led to a more mature rating for the game. Hopefully, with the inclusion of Jill Valentine, the developers will also bring back her ability to summon a shambling or flaming T-virus corpse. With that having been said, MvC3 is still a worthwhile go regardless if you’re looking for brains, adamantium or a fight to the finish.

Developer: Capcom
Publisher: Capcom
Platform: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
Release date: February 15, 2011

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