Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 Review

Title: Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3
Developer: Capcom 
Game Type: PlayStation Vita
Download: 1.3 GB
NA Availability: 
Retail
EU Availability: Retail

Fighting games have been around for a long time, and cross-over fighting games are nothing new to the genre.  There have been a multitude of cross-over fighting games out for quite some time.  Cross-Over fighting games are fighting games that include characters from several different forms of media, or franchises or just games in general.  Many such titles include Dissidia, Persona 4 Arena, Street Figher x Tekken, and most iconically, Marvel vs Capcom.

Marvel vs Capcom has been around for awhile and has had several releases, from Marvel vs Capcom all the way to recent days with Marvel vs Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds, and its final version, Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3.  If you’ve noticed online things lately, you will realize that Marvel vs Capcom 2 and Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 were forcibly pulled from online stores, like Xbox Live and the PlayStation Network, so finding it is getting harder.  All, that is, except for the PlayStation Vita version of Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3.

Being a launch title for the Vita, Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 showed just what the portable system could do with bringing a big fighter to the small screen.  The big question is, however….is it worth it?  Did the game make sacrifices to make it onto the Vita?  There is only one way to find out that answer.  Here is our official review of Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 for the PlayStation Vita.

Story

There isn’t a huge emphasis on the plot of Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3.  While there are story scenes for each character when playing through Arcade Mode that ends in them saving the world from Galactus, there isn’t a really huge focus on the plot, other than “All these characters are in the same world”, the main premise of any cross-over game.  If you’re looking for a deep and enthralling plot, you’re looking in the wrong place.

This game’s story does, however, feature a very sizeable roster of characters.  Coming from both the Marvel and Capcom universes, you will see the likes of the Hulk, Wolverine, Iron Man, Spider-Man, Rocket Raccoon and more from the Marvel side duking it out with the likes of Ryu, Zero, Ace Attorney, Nemesis, Albert Wesker, Arthur, and more from the Capcom side.  With 50 characters to choose from, the character size of the story is quite large.

Other than small character scenes, there really is no story to this game, other than using characters from the two sets of franchises and locations from those franchises.

Gameplay

The gameplay of Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 takes place on a 3D plane from a 2D perspective.  At its basics, it is a 2D fighting game, but every part of the stages are 3D and you can see a lot of depth to each stage, especially in the introduction animations.  All character models are also in 3D, though everything is played like a 2D fighting game, much like the predecessors of the series.

You are put on a stage with a party of three people, though you only use one at a time against an enemy part of three people.  Your goal is to attack until your opponent’s characters all have their health reach zero.  Since this is a party of three, you will need to run down each character, one at a time.  Once you take one character out, another will automatically come in to take their place.

Taking down enemy parties lies heavily on learning combination attacks for each character you are using.  You can use Practice Mode or the Start Menu to look at each character’s combination lists or you can make combos of your own.  The idea for attacking is to build up energy so you can unleash Super Attacks, which have their own animations, are harder to dodge or guard against, and do huge amounts of damage to the enemy.

Using Supers also can be done with the Assist System.  The Assist system allows you to, at any time, call on one of your supporting party members to jump in and attack the enemy for a moment, or you can switch characters altogether.  If you have enough energy built up, though, you can create an Assist Super, which means your supporting characters will jump in and you will all use your supers at the same time.  If this hits an enemy, you know they’ll be hurting afterwards.

As far as Game Modes are concerned, you have a few options.  First is Arcade Mode, which is where you take a party and play through a set of battles until you get to the Final Boss of the game, whom is Galactus.  After winning a fight with him, which is much easier than it sounds, you will “win” the game and get the story ending for whichever character you defeat him with.  This is easy for unlocking character endings as you can fight with someone you’re good with and then finish him off by switching to the character whose ending you want.

Other Modes include Missions, Versus, Training, and Heroes and Heralds.  Missions allow you to complete tasks and learn characters.  Versus Mode is where you can hop online and battle opponents via Wi-Fi from around the world.  Training Mode is where you can practice with characters, and Heroes and Heralds is a new Mode provided for Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3.  In this Mode, you gain cards as your party goes around the world, taking back territory, trying to get one of the sides (Heroes or Heralds/Villains) to gain back every place in the world.

Another new addition to the Ultimate version is Galactus Mode.  If you put in a button combination at the start of the Arcade Mode.  This lets you play as Galactus and fight three-member parties.

Some interesting features that are included in the PS Vita version, though, are cross-play feature.  This allows you to use your PlayStation Vita to connect to the PS3 system and use the Vita as a controller for the PS3 version of the game, in case you like its control scheme and feel better than a Dual Shock 3.

Another thing is that DLC is shared between the two platforms.  That means that if you already had bought the DLC for the game before, it will automatically be yours both for PS3 and PS Vita.

All in all, it’s a fun game and will last you at least a few good hours just with testing out and finding which characters you like.  If you want to unlock everything and do every mission, I would expect the game to last you at least 10-15 hours.

Controls

The controls of a fighting game such as this can be very complex, and you will likely be using most of the buttons on the PlayStation Vita as you play the game.  The default controls utilize almost every physical button on the system, though there are also other methods of playing the game with some of the Vita’s more unique features, whether they are considered good or fair, or they are not.

The default button configuration has moving, crouching and jumping either with the D-Pad or the Left Analog Stick.  Fighting enemies with Light, Medium, and Heavy attacks are done with the Square, Triangle, and Circle buttons, along with using the X button to use attacks to launch enemies into the air.  The L and R buttons are used for Assists, Changing Characters, and unleashing supers.  The button configuration is customizable, so you can set an action to whatever button you wish.

The PlayStation Vita version also features Touch Controls.  When you go into Touch Mode on the game, you can use the Touch Screen to play the game.  This is done by swiping across the screen to make your character move.  You can also tap repeatedly on the enemy character and your character will automatically perform a combo on them.  This is a very easy way to play the game and some people refer to it as being cheap and unfair.  To separate this, there is a separate playing mode for Touch Controls.

Presentation

The presentation is, without a doubt, one of this game’s most wonderful qualities.  From each animation to each character mode in-game, the untrained eye will not be able to tell the graphics are any less polished as they are on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.  As seen in the screenshots provided, this game with its cell-shaded style, looks very nice on the PlayStation Vita’s screen.

When looking really closely, you can tell there is a difference.  There are very small jagged edges right on the edge of each character model, but with how much Capcom polished this to work on the Vita, it’s hard to tell.  They did this very smart to make the game look almost as good as it does on the big consoles, and the fact that the screen is so much smaller than a TV really helps make it look great.

The only downside to the presentation are the load times.  When you first open the game, you will likely be waiting 20-30 seconds or more before you start getting to the intro movie and the title screen.  Also, when battles are loading, you’ll come face-to-face with several long load times.  If you can be patient, this isn’t a problem.  If not, then you will quickly become annoyed with all of these load times before and after every fight you go through.

Overall

All in all, Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 on the PlayStation Vita is every much as it is on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.  With action-packed fights and a huge character roster, it is one of the most vast fighting games on the system and certainly one of the better launch titles.  While load times hold this game back, it looks and plays beautifully and any Marvel or Capcom fan shouldn’t have a game library without this game.

The PlayStation Network Review Network rates Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 an 8.5/10.

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