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We're Kick-Punch-Block, otherwise known as KPB!

Helping to expand the Fighting Game community locally in the heart of NYC, nationally, and eventually worldwide.

Runback/Retort with… 2Tall: MAHVEL, BAYBEE!

Hello, everyone! 2Tall here, coming at you with another write up! What a marvelous time to be alive, isn’t it? 

As Kick-Punch-Block’s resident Marvel fanatic, the reveal at the 2016 PlayStation Experience was one that brought me so much joy. That’s right, Marvel vs Capcom returns in the form of Marvel vs Capcom: Infinite. The hype is back! Long live Marvel, from today till the end of days! I’ve been calling it for years and the time has finally arrived. What a glorious time! This won’t be a terribly long article, but I’ll just give some honest thoughts on what we’ve seen so far and the potential of the game we love!

Firstly, there were two dramatic gameplay changes from it’s predecessor Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3. There’s no 3 versus 3 tag team action. It’s gone back to the original format of 2 versus 2. Although I’m definitely accustomed to 3-v-3 combat because of my background in UMVC3, I can definitely appreciate the focus of a 2-v-2 format. Secondly, there are no assists in this game. This is a source of much contention among players. Me personally, I love assists. They add another dimension to the game and influence the meta. I definitely wouldn't mind assists returning. However, UMVC3 implemented assists in such a way that they were a little unbalanced. Some assists are completely ridiculous and assist cooldown time is way too short. But regardless, there are no assists in Infinite. There’s a gem system that harkens back to the days of Marvel Super Heroes. Finally, with regards to gameplay, it looks like a mix of both Street Fighter X Tekken (which was slept on) and Tatsunoko vs Capcom (which was also slept on, but it came out on the wrong console. A Wii exclusive? In the golden age of PS3 and Xbox 360? C’mon, Capcom). I won’t go into too much detail since things are still subject to change and it’s very early, but it looks solid.

All things considered, I’m EXTREMELY EXCITED FOR THIS GAME. I’ve been telling people for YEARS that a new Marvel game was going to come out. I’ve been preaching all of 2016 and years prior that we’re going to get a sequel and, lo and behold, we did. my "I told you so’s" aside, even this early on, the game looks to be shaping up into something special. The cast already looks great with Ryu, Megaman X, Captain Marvel, Iron Man, Captain America, Morrigan -- seriously, why is she in every game? There are other Darkstalkers, you know... sheesh -- with plenty more fighters to be announced as time goes on. The gameplay goes back to the series roots with the 2 versus 2 format, and now that there are no ridiculous assists, the game will be more honest. Probably more honest than a Marvel vs Capcom game has ever been. So far, at least.

However, what makes me the most excited about this game is the amount of care it seems to be receiving. An interview at the PlayStation Experience with Mike Evans and Mike Jones from Capcom and Marvel Studios, this is the first game developed in house at Capcom in over 10 years. In my opinion, that’s a great sign because some of Capcom’s greatest games were in house projects. In addition, what is also a great sign is that Marvel, and therefore Disney, will be very involved with this project down to the tiniest details. Disney is very controlling when it comes to their IPs and so I expect that everything, including voicework, costumes, presentation and more, will be second to none.

This also leads me to believe that this game will not suffer from how Capcom games have been suffering at launch lately. Since the beginning of the decade, Capcom games have suffered from terrible launches all around. Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds launched with no content at all. Even something as simple as spectator mode was absent in online play and we didn’t get it till the expansion came out. Then, Street Fighter X Tekken came out, which by all means should be a mainstay in the tournament circuit, but the poor launch with the locked on disc fighters made the game die an early death. Fast forward to 2016 and we get SFV, with possibly the worst Capcom fighting game launch in history. No arcade mode, bad battle lounge, bad ranked match system, server issues, only 16 fighters, no story mode... I could go on and on. Already, it seems like that’s unacceptable for Disney as Marvel vs Capcom: Infinite will have the best story mode a versus game, and likely a Capcom fighting game, has ever had. In addition, Disney doesn’t seem to want anything negative associated with their IPs generally. Just look at how they treat the prequel era in "Star Wars". They cancelled Star Wars: The Clone Wars" immediately and Star Wars: Battlefront contains no prequel era content at all. I’m sure that with Disney calling the shots, we will get a whole product that works the way it’s supposed to at launch.

Finally, as we are now in the eSports era, I have high hopes that Marvel vs Capcom: Infinite will be a premier eSports title. With the media giant, Disney, backing the game, the possibilities are endless. The game could be on ESPN with ease, pot bonuses at events can be huge, more events can be televised, and the list goes on. Marvel can be elevated to levels unheard of for a versus game. In fact, there’s the very real possibility that this can become the premier eSports fighting game period. The recognition of the characters, along with gameplay that’s exciting to watch, coupled with the grand popularity of the series, will have Marvel return in a major way and bigger than it ever has been.

And there you have it! I was delighted to write this article and keep preaching the Marvel Gospel. The Marvel series of versus games are the games that got me into the FGC and it’s a series that I will love for many years to come. I’m delighted that I was correct about a new Marvel game coming out and I’m ecstatic that the future of this game looks brighter than the future of any versus game has ever been.

Long Live Marvel! From today till the end of days!

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