Adding an X-factor to their traditional 2D fighter, Capcom looks to reignite our passion for one of their most revered fighting franchises in Marvel vs. Capcom 3.

The 'Marvel vs. Capcom' series is revered by the fanatical fighting community and even though it's nearly ten years old, it is still played and enjoyed in fighting tournaments today. So as you can guess, creating the next chapter in the series would be a popular move. Thankfully Capcom has decided to answer the fanfare with the third release in this epic battle between the iconic characters from Marvel comics and the ragtag cast from all over Capcom's library of games. For those unfamiliar with the series, this mash-up might sound odd, but when it comes down to it, if you love video-games and Marvel comics, then you easily fall in love with the VS battles that take place.

The basics of the game is based off Capcom's traditional 2D fighting backbone, which has been “modernized” by adding in 3D characters and explosions of graphical fireworks. The look, and feel is similar to Capcom's 'Street Fighter' remake with an even more stylized spin. Dark lines, crisp bright colours, dazzling effects, and dulled out yet busy backgrounds are all highlights of 'Marvel vs. Capcom 3.' The characters, a cast of personable characters you know and love are strong representations from the media they where pulled from. 'Marvel vs. Capcom 3' looks astounding when fists clash in full motion.

Without listing all the 36 characters, expect to see some iconic Marvel characters like Captain America, Spider-Man, Ironman and the Hulk. On the Capcom side, its a little less “iconic,” with characters such as Viewtiful Joe, Dante and Trish from 'Devil May Cry,' Morrigan Aensland, Felicia and Hsien-Ko from 'Darkstalkers,' along with more of characters from games like 'Street Fighter,' 'Mega Man,' and the list goes on. Aside from all the “big players” expect some smaller names making an apperance like the Taskmaster and X-23 from Marvel and Tron Bonne and Nathan Spencer from Capcom. The roster might not have all your favorites, but Capcom did a good job to include enough of the favorites along with the few surprises for the more hardcore.


Now that we have covered the characters and art style, it's almost time to get to the fighting, but first we have to cover the story. Yes, 'Marvel vs. Capcom 3' has a narrative, albeit a weak one, but its there, a plot of two sides teaming up to defeat a force that is threatening to decimate the planet. Go figure, they want to fight one another before the take on this force, which is also the final unimpressive boss. Really, the story doesn't matter, and if it wasn't for the inspiring opening cinematic, I wouldn't have jumped right into the fighting. Kudos to Capcom for putting that together, even if I wanted to see Felicia claw up with Wolverine and not Ryu.

Onto the combat, 'Marvel vs. Capcom 3' is a zinger of a fighter. Its fast, often cluttered and full of big moves and characters jumping in and out of the action. The gameplay is instantly gratifying for the inexperienced fighting fan and will make you feel like an unstoppable juggernaut in an instant. This is helped on by a new “simple” playing style that simplifies all the controls so you can pull off the super moves easier. Still it's not as solid as playing under normal rules, however, this feature will help get more casual gamers into the very competitive world of fighting games, especially online.

Momentum is important to victories in 'Marvel vs. Capcom 3' and the wild selection of roster really helps to shake things up when going up against different fighters. Like anything timing is important and practice makes perfect. It won't take too long to get the hang of the characters and their move-sets, however mastering the game is another ballgame, at least experimenting is fun. Finding the right characters is paramount to get your swagger on. The balance isn't as tight as 'Street Fighter,' but that’s the charm of the over-the-top magic of 'Marvel vs. Capcom 3.'


For new features, 'Marvel vs. Capcom 3' includes a new "power-up" called the “x-factor.” When activated the “x-factor” is a wild card that temporarily boosts your character's abilities in several ways. The “wild card” feel comes from its effects that can boost your power, speed, abilities and so on. You will never know exactly how this “x-factor” will work, but it will always be in the form of a bonus. Depending on your team, and current health, its level of effectiveness and activation duration will differ. It's an interesting addition that makes for some interesting situations, like the big comeback, or the total squash. Lastly, it also resets the characters animation so you can chain attacks that wouldn't normally be possible, meaning double super moves! Learning to take advantage of the “x-factor” comes with experience and so far, its seems like a smart decision that will be up for debate for years to come. Either good or bad, you can't mistake the impact it makes on the typical back and forth gameplay.

For modes, 'Marvel vs. Capcom 3' looses a bit of its momentum and is sadly a little lacking. The game is divided between its online and offline mode with VS battles, a normal story-like mode, training battles, and a training mission mode. More of anything definitely would have helped to spice up the meaty portion of the game; even a tower feature or feature to spar one-on-one would have something a little more. As it stands, 'Marvel vs. Capcom 3' has enough to keep fighting enthusiasts wrapped up in the action for months. However, it might not be enough to hold the interest of the casual market who will welcome its new “simple” mode and known roster of fighters. It is really too bad more options weren't added (patching it might be too late,) however, I will take this 'Marvel vs. Capcom 3' over no 'Marvel vs. Capcom.'


'Marvel vs. Capcom 3' will impress you with its graphical flair, diverse roster of characters, and simplified, yet deep combat system. However long term appeal might not hold up to some other fighters on the market. Still, this one is for the fans and us fanboys couldn't have waited any longer. While it might not be the ultimate game we wanted, Capcom has stepped it up and provided a well made, solid fighter with some of favourite heroes clashing in an epic battle. Fighting fans, you will want to check out this one.

  • excellent cast of characters on both sides
  • graphics are brilliant, bright and flashy
  • fast gameplay that offers instant gratification
  • x-factor is nice inclusion
  • lots of extras to unlock, although we could have used more characters
  • more game modes would have been welcomed, can get old quick
  • bound to be some disappointments with the cast
  • could have used more end match animations and levels
Quote: "While it might not be the ultimate game we wanted, Capcom has stepped it up and provided a well made, solid fighter with some of favourite heroes clashing in an epic battle."
Reviewed by Downtown Jimmy | 02.19.11

Similar Games: Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars (8.0) | Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 (8.7)


Marvel vs. Capcom 3




US Release
February 2011


PS3, X360

Players 1-2
Online MP 2-8
HD 720p-1080p
5.1 surround
D/L Content