Capcom sure loves their fighting games. We've seen a number of their games released digitally over the last couple of years that proves this, including Marvel vs. Capcom 2: New Age of Heroes, Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix, Street Fighter III 3rd Strike Online Edition, JoJo's Bizarre Adventure HD and more. (Capcom vs. SNK 2 also got a re-release in Japan, though only in its original PlayStation 2 form. Still, it counts.) Joining the fray next week are a pair of other classics that fans are sure to appreciate, through the Marvel vs. Capcom Origins collection.
Unlike the solo releases that have rattled down the line, Origins consists of two re-conditioned fighting games, which have their own loyal following. Marvel Superheroes features a number of classic heroes and villains from the Marvel universe, including Spider-Man, Wolverine, Thanos and Dr. Doom among others, while Marvel vs. Capcom introduced a whole new level of cross-over fighting that X-Men Vs. Street Fighter and Marvel Superheroes vs. Street Fighter did before, with even more characters.
But Capcom isn't just slapping these games together with a quick HD transfer and calling it good. It's adding a number of features to really make players enjoy what they have to offer, as we've detailed in a previous preview for the game back around Comic-Con 2012. We got a chance to go hands-on with each title before their launch next week, just to see how they're shaping up.
Now, as you can probably tell from Capcom's other high-definition releases, they mean serious business when it comes to making these games look their best. Even the most aged of the two, Marvel Superheroes, barely has any blemishes. The character animation is rich and fun to watch, especially with special attacks, and the backdrops look very inspired when it comes to tributing Marvel history.
The effects of a fight in Marvel Superheroes can also change quite a bit, thanks to the use of Infinity Gems. Acquiring these enable you to activate abilities that can help you win each fight, such as improved speed or power. (That's probably a good reason that Thanos is involved in the cast, leading the Infinity Gauntlet from comic lore.)
As for Marvel vs. Capcom, it's all about the celebration of the cross-over. We used this tactic quite a bit in the matches we took on, swapping our partners out once they were running low on energy, giving them a chance to rest while the other did damage. You can also mix and match, so you don't necessarily have to choose two Capcom characters or Marvel characters strictly. In fact, one of our best tag teams emerged when we placed Strider Hiryu and Wolverine side by side, kicking butt in a number of inspired worlds. And our third partner? The Forgotten Soldier from Forgotten Worlds. Perfect tag team right there, if we do say so ourselves.
The gameplay for each title is just fine, and you can use your analog controller to execute moves with ease, either with the analog stick or the D-pad. Obviously, you'll get more weight out of the games if you have a custom controller on stand-by, such as a FightStick or FightPad from the MadCatz camp.
In addition to being able to set up your fight options, both games also provide a number of tracking tools displayed on the side of the screen, with a number of goals to meet and feedback regarding your performance with regular and super attacks. This data doesn't really distract from the beautiful fighting action that's taking place, and hardcore players will be able to keep track of what they do with it. Sometimes it's an overload of information, but better than not knowing enough about the fight, yes?
Though both Marvel Superheroes and Marvel vs. Capcom have limited rosters over the 50+ player count from Marvel vs. Capcom 2, there's no argument that both games look great. As we mentioned, Superheroes has an exquisite presentation, and Marvel vs. Capcom is no slouch, with inspired backgrounds (the Mega Man one, with Dr. Wily barking in the background, is our favorite) and cool super effects, with what appears to be a lightning storm splashing onto the field.
Finally, though we didn't get to fully test it, both games will come with online support through Xbox Live and the PlayStation Network, and Capcom is putting its best foot forward to making sure the games perform up to speed admirably, without lag or drop-offs. We're eager to see how they hold up soon.
If you're a fan of Capcom classics and can't wait to add a couple more to your collection, Marvel vs. Capcom Origins is a must-have. But even if you like some of the newer fighting games out there, this one's worth a go. Check it out when it arrives next week.