Infinity and Beyond: A Marvel vs Capcom Infinite Preview with Genxa

Hey Everyone, Genxa from OzHadou here with my first impressions of Marvel vs Capcom: Infinite.

General Impressions

There are a number of popular fighting games on the market right now, but the current generation still lacks a fast-paced and exciting title to fill the hole that was left by Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3. Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite is definitely there to do that job. I feel the game has a lot of potential for creativity which the current roster of fighting titles seem to lack.

Judging by the roster available in the preview build, it is easy to see that Marvel is putting a heavy emphasis on characters from the massively popular Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Capcom: Ryu, Mega Man X, Chun Li, Strider Hiryu, Chris Redfield, Morrigan (Sigma has since been added)
Marvel: Captain America, Captain Marvel, Iron Man, Thor, Hulk, Hawkeye, Ultron (Rocket Racoon will also feature in the game)

Although the build that we tested is still a little away from the final product, gameplay is already top notch. People familiar with X-Men vs Street Fighter will feel right at home, as it is a 2v2 hyper fighter with no Assist calls. Capcom has improved upon this formula with active character switching — even during combos and specials — to kick the intensity up to 11.

Marvel vs Capcom: Infinite also introduces the Infinity Gem system, a pre-selected Gem which give your characters a unique skill coupled with a unique activation as a comeback factor (Think Street Fighter V).

In-depth gameplay mechanics

For the hardcore competitive fans out there who I know have a multitude of very specific questions, I have tried to test as much as I could.

If you are expecting this to play like Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3, you will have a bad time. This is more akin to X-Men vs. Street Fighter with a combo system similar to Street Fighter X Tekken.

Some quick notes; do bear in mind that I did not test the final build, so all of these are subject to change:

  • Button layout: LP, HP, LK, HK, Tag, Gem
  • Wavedash/Crouch dash: Yes
  • Plink dash: No as far as we could test (also applies during Fly)
  • Fly cancelling: Yes for normal, no for specials. No more Bullet Hell
  • Alpha counter: Done by holding the Tag button while blocking, but it is a bit unreliable/timing is odd
  • No TACs
  • Infinity gems give you essentially a pre-set V-Skill and a V-Trigger (with its own meter)
  • There is a sort of comeback mechanic, not similar to X-factor
  • Superjump: Yes
  • Air dash: Yes
  • DHC: No, but you are able to actively tag in at any time for free (even during a Super).
  • Happy Bday: Yes, and happens easily if you are not smart with your tags.
  • Snapback: No
  • You don’t gain any meter from whiffing normal/specials.
  • Meter gain feels very, very slow.

Final Thoughts

Although we did manage to find some perhaps unintentional weirdness, the game is much more polished than we first would have thought. The art style is modern and takes influences from American comic books and the speed is what you would expect from a hyper fighter. From what we have seen, it will be a mainstay for the current generation of fighting games. It will be another welcome addition to the Capcom line-up, and much needed boost to the currently small line-up of fighting games on the market.

Awesome Nix: Spare the Pre-Release Reveals and Surprise Me

I should be far more excited for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 than I actually am. It’s the first comic book movie since 2014 that I’m genuinely excited to see, but as we inch ever close to release, I’m worried about the amount of information getting out there.

While no plot spoilers have been revealed, various members of the Guardians team have been happily talking to the press and public about specific elements of the movie, and they’re being posting them without any warning or way of avoiding spoilers. Details about the soundtrack, casting and even the amount of post-credit sequences have become public knowledge ahead of the movie’s release.

It’s becoming an increasingly worrying trend amongst tentpole Hollywood releases to reveal more and more about a movie ahead of release. Spider-Man: Homecoming recently came under fire for effectively revealing a majority of the plot in its two minute trailer, and  Ghost in the Shell’s trailer all but revealed its plot twist.

Sadly, this has been proven to work. In a 2015 interview with Entertainment Weekly, Matt Brubaker (president of theatrical at PR agency Trailer Park) offered this: “Nine times out of 10, the more of the plot you give away, the more interest you garner from the audiences. Audiences respond to the trailers with more of the movie.”

While Brubaker’s belief didn’t exactly hold true for Ghost in the Shell’s box office performance, it’s also a belief I wholeheartedly disagree with. There’s no greater power than surprise, and it’s something that’s been especially true in the recent gaming landscape.

My frontrunner for 2017’s Game of the Year is Nier: Automata, and while I certainly would’ve enjoyed it had I gone into it knowing its key moments, there’s no way it would have become my fervent and unwavering pick for 2017’s best game if I’d known those specifics. From the very first moment, I wasn’t sure where the game would go and I was exceptionally happy that I didn’t know. Whenever director Yoko Taro sharply turned the game on its head, it left me wanting more.  It’s a game I have recommended to people and told them explicitly to not read up on anything prior. Very few games have made me speak this way.

Even before Nier: Automata, From Software made themselves household names with the Souls games, a series that thrived on letting players figure things out for themselves. Game Designer and Podcaster Jim Crawford has made something of a career of making games about discovery and surprise in the age of spoilers. There’s a reason why his games, Frog Fractions and its sequel, are lauded and yet not really spoken about.

While I have no doubt that revealing key information about Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.2 won’t affect its box office performance or how people perceive it, it’s unfortunate that this has become the norm. There’s still a place for surprise, and maybe I’m old fashioned, but it’s depressing to see this go away with so little resistance.

After all, everyone remembers the first time they learnt about Luke Skywalker’s father, or the truth about Dr. Malcolm Crowe, and it sure as hell wasn’t before release.