It's been 10 years since the characters of Marvel's comics and Capcom's video games faced off in a fighting title, so 2011's Marvel Vs Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds can't come soon enough.
The title, which will likely feature more than 30 characters to choose from and feature 3-on-3 tag team fighting, hits the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 in autumn 2011. There currently are no plans for an arcade, computer or Wii version of the title, Capcom tells Kotaku.
"I'm really excited to be here so that I can share this information with you today," Ryota Niitsuma, the game's producer, told a room of journalists gathered last week in Hawaii for the game's unveiling.
Like Capcom's popular Street Fighter IV, Marvel Vs Capcom 3 will feature 3D characters fighting on a 2D plane, he said. The game won't, however, use the same sort of graphics found in Street Fighter IV and Super Street Fighter IV. Instead Marvel Vs Capcom 3 will run on an "advanced version" of MT Framework, the same engine that powers the graphics of Lost Planet 2 and Resident Evil 5.
"Each version of MT Framework gets better than the previous version," Niitsuma said. "A lot of key staff are involved with this game and they wanted to use the engine they are more comfortable with."
Chris Baker, the manager of licensed games at Marvel Studios, said he was astounded to see the concept art for Marvel Vs Capcom 3 and said that in action it's just as amazing, calling the title a "beautiful, beautiful game".
Baker pointed out that Wolverine's look in the game hearkens back to the classic look of the beloved character. Iron Man, on the other hand, fits his contemporary look and The Hulk has a new visual style.
The shaders used on each character, Capcom's Seth Killian said, are what really make all of the characters so visually distinct in motion. Even Capcom's Ryu, he pointed out, is brought out in a new way with the help of the shaders.
"You could see him sitting in a comic book frame," Killian said, "and maybe one day you will."
The game will also have an eclectic and robust mix of music, with at least 100 pieces including remixes of favourites from previous Marvel Vs Capcom games as well as some new music.
"It's all about having a lot of content and things to go with this game," Niitsuma said. "We also want to make sure the music suits the type of game this is."
And the music needs to suit the characters as well, Baker added.
While news of a new version of Marvel Vs Capcom was highly anticipated leading up to Capcom's annual event last week (Baker said it was one of the questions most often asked of him and the hardest secret he's had to keep since working at the comic company), the presentation was light on details about which characters would make the cut for the game.
The gameplay-free trailer shows that Wolverine, the Hulk, Iron Man, Street Fighter's Ryu, Darkstalker's Morrigan and Resident Evil's Chris Redfield will be in the game. It also hints at the appearance of Captain America, Super Skrull, Chun-Li, Deadpool, Felicia, Dante or Nero, Spencer or Wesker, Mephisto, Rad Spencer and Doctor Doom. The inclusion of Redfield in the game is indicative of the direction the game's developers are headed in terms of Capcom character selection, Killian said.
While the game could certainly support any number of characters, Niitsuma said that time constraints led the team to shoot for a bit more than 30 characters in the game.
While downloadable content for the game, most likely new characters, is certainly possible, no DLC plans have yet been locked in, said Capcom's Seth Killian.
"There are a couple of different directions they're thinking about," he said.
And unlike previous Marvel Vs. Capcom games, this latest iteration will have a strong storyline.
"It's important that game's have strong stories for Marvel," Baker said. "With fighting games it's not as essential as an action game or role playing game but we are very much insisting there be some cohesive kind of story for this game.
"We actually have a subtitle for the game that means something this time. In the coming months we will be giving you more information about it."