Call them “Exhibit A” and “Exhibit B” while they play, simply because it makes things easier to work in such a hostile setting. It also helps when obscenities, wry jokes at character’s voices, and lamentations at the lack of beer become ever-present. It becomes a marathon when Exhibit A and B pick up there respected controllers to begin the onslaught that is Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds. Yet they were undeterred by what would happen, as this would be epic beyond all comparison.
“What’s the story for this thing anyway?” Asked A as they set up shop, with controllers, drinks, and pads set up. “It doesn’t matter. It just has Whisker walking like a rapist, and that’s all that you need to know. Press random.” Exhibit B slaps the start, and immediately you see the love and care that Capcom has put in for fans. Finite tweaks in the comic book settings between matches, or the trash-talk between characters: It fuels the fights and breaths of character that most fighting games don’t normally.
“What in the shapuga is happening…”Apparently first time around had confused and befuddled A, who had been a long-time player of Marvel vs. Capcom 2, was having the most issues. With the controls massively simplified since its previous installment, while also cutting back nearly 20 characters since MvC2, his strategies and button combinations were lost.
ExhibitA figured that after the quick jaunt in Versus with B, it was time for him to refine his skills and head to the Arcade section. Here, he was tested through round after round of merciless battle, getting a chance to hone his abilities while checking out the scenery.
“You play like a girl dude, you realize that right?” Proclaims B, as he sits and reads through the manual, checking up on some much needed tips on button combos. “I’m not going to lie right now, I’m having a really hard time figuring out what I’m doing.” His eyes never left the screen, glued to Super Skrull saving the day again in Round 6 of Arcade. Even playing on the easiest difficulty, the AI would progressively beat you into submission; “It’s taunting me while I learn, just like Mommie.”
Still, watching A (and subsequently B) play through their Arcade rounds and Missions, I notice that it’s never about the battle, but the strategy that MvC:3 brings in. It’s like watching a doctor choose their tools for an upcoming surgery: all about precision and articulation. Will you want to play with your return favorites like Iron Man, Captain America, and Spider-Man to have one of the more balanced attack/defense/ranged teams? Take up some of the newbie’s like Deadpool, Whisker, and Super Skrull for ranged attack with the bombastic strength in the wings?
The choices that will pop up are endless giving both the old-school players and newcomers a chance to find something that will keep them playing, especially once you get a handing on the controls. With both Exhibit A and B now in full swing of the game. It’s nothing but random matches and a constant array of screams, yells, blistering combinations, and the occasional fallen pizza box. Each battle was waged for both bragging rights and to learn each character’s pros and cons within the game: whom they worked with whom, who shouldn’t be paired together, and how in the hell you stopped Vewitful Joe’s massive air combos.
It was finally my turn to take a stick, and without any prior knowledge of the Marvel vs. Capcom series (yet ample experience with the fighting genre) I was eager. Right off the bat, those new to the game will find a learning curve based on the frenzied fighting. Yet once a few rounds go past, it’s so rewarding to see your opponent cry out in dismay over a 65-hit combo, with you turning an aerial into a changeup, which then turns into a Hyper Combo.
I find myself screaming at Exhibit A, telling him to shove his misplaced grab at my Thor where the sun doesn’t shine while countering with my Ryu and Dante combo, he responds by laughing at me, watching as both fall to the ground. Exhibit B gives helpful advice and I continue to play, winning three more matches in the process, simply by learning when and how best to use a character’s abilities based on their movement. It’s just that simple and fluid.
Marvel vs.Capcom 3does a thing that is prime reason why so may shy away from other fighting games: it makes itself accessible to anyone. Without having to learn daunting button combinations, excessive character tier lists, fight against the same five fighters constantly, they have opened up an endless possibility for new creative ways to enjoy fighting games.
As for Exhibit A and B, they will keep playing until they feel that they have given their part in the game, or until a new challenger approaches and declares that they have the title of supreme fighter. Until then, they will play and learn and work it out themselves.
“Did you notice that Haggar looks, sounds, and takes all of his animations from Zangief?”
“It’s called working on a budget”