|System: Xbox 360, PS3|
|Release: February 15, 2011|
|Players: 1-2 (2-8 Online)|
|Screen Resolution: 720p-1080p||Mild Language, Partial Nudity, Sexual Themes, Violence|
by Amanda L. Kondolojy
When Marvel vs. Capcom 3 was originally announced, fans the world over were excited. It had been so long since MvC 2 had been released, and fans couldn't wait to get another taste of the tough yet stylish gameplay that had marked the series thus far. However, as we got closer to release and more information was given about the game's development, Marvel vs. Capcom enthusiasts started worrying about the new shape the game was taking. Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds certainly represents an evolutionary leap for the series, but undoubtedly, some fans will be left cold by some of the changes made. However, if you take the package by itself and leave the history behind, Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds is a tight and accessible fighter that is sure to be a crowd pleaser.
The biggest change to the series at-large is the battle system. While Marvel vs. Capcom 2 used a battle system that closely resembled the Street Fighter series (with two buttons each assigned to kick and punch functionality), Marvel vs. Capcom 3 ditches this system completely and uses a three button system that has light, medium, and heavy attacks. There is also a button assigned to trigger special attacks. This system is a little tough to wrap your mind around at first, and for someone who spent quite a lot of time mastering classic characters, I found it tough to re-train my brain.
However, once I got the hang of it, I found myself enjoying the new battle system. It feels much more modern than its predecessors, and though it lacks the depth of the combat found in games like BlazBlue or Street Fighter IV, the inherent accessibility in the game made it easy to pick up and play, and I found myself diving into the game's training mode and performing advanced offensive moves with ease.
In addition to the easier approach to the battle system and rapid-fire combo ability, I was also able to use the little nuances of the battle system to start playing strategically. Though any fighting game enthusiast will tell you that you need a strategy no matter what title you are playing, games with simpler battle systems often fall victim to the "press more buttons to win!" issue. However, Marvel vs. Capcom 3's battle system allows for counter, blocking, and swap strategies to be employed easily. Sure, it's easy to jump in and beat the game's offline arcade mode by slamming your palm against the buttons and the d-pad, but if you really want to hone your skills and develop skills in the online arena, you'll have to practice your moves, learn how to take cues from other characters, and strategically plan how to take down your opponents.
While it is fun to play Marvel vs. Capcom 3 for hours on end and plumb the depths of its battle system, the overall experience was a little hollow. Aside from the game's arcade mode (which really is just criminally short...most players will probably only need a half-hour to burn through it) and the online mode, there isn't much to do in the game. There's a mission mode, which works essentially as extended training for each character; a proper training room; and a "collectibles" area where you can check out concept art and other digital goodies. Though these are all good additions, none of them are enough to hold your attention for long, and I really wish that more modes would have been included.