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The Future of Fighting Games: Looking Forward At Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Skullgirls, Street Fighter X Tekken, and More!

Deesing
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Posted October 28, 2011 - By Jonathan Deesing









What's in store for the future of fighting games? 2011 has been the year fighting fans have been waiting for. Mortal Kombat and Marvel vs. Capcom 3 alone made fans weep with joy, but toss in Super Street Fighter IV 3DS and you’ve got yourself a year like no other. And the best part of it – they’re all so damn good.

This resurgence of great classic games all so bunched together has us wondering, where are fighting games headed? Should we duck and weave as more and more fly our way? The short answer, it seems, is yes. With Soulcaliber V, a couple of Street Fighter/Tekken crossovers and indie game Skullgirls on the way, we can look forward to a few more years of plenty. So buckle up your headgear as we take a look at the future of fighting games.

 

Soul Calibur 5 Ezio Announcement Trailer »


 

Soulcaliber V
Release date: January 31, 2012

Fighting fans have been waiting far too long for the most recent Soul Caliber installment and Soul Caliber V looks to deliver in fine form. After Soul Caliber IV, the team behind the game disbanded, leaving many to believe the series was dead and gone forever. However, the game’s release date was just announced for an almost tangible January 31, 2012 and teasers keep rolling in to keep rapturous fans rolling.

V features at least half a dozen new fighters, for a grand total of over 18, including freshly announced guest fighter of Assassin’s Creed fame, Ezio Auditore da Firenze. Luckily Ezio will not be system exclusive and there is an open chance for more guest appearances. Beyond this, unfortunately, there aren’t many details on possible changes or improvements to the series. We can certainly expect the graphics and gameplay to get sharper and the game’s simultaneous release on iOS seems promising, if a little weird.

Defining Feature: It’s freakin' Soul Caliber. If you like fighting games, you’ll like it. We promise.

 

Skullgirls "Parasoul" Trailer »


 

Skullgirls 
Release date: First quarter 2012

Skullgirls is the realization of a dream. A dream about not getting pinned in the corner of the screen by my buddy Pete and beaten into submission. A dream about beautifully rendered characters with giant flexing arms for headwear. It’s a dream about balance.

This upcoming indie title slated for the PSN and XBLA is all about balance. Developed by recently founded Reverge Labs, Skullgirls hearkens back to classic 2D combo-based fighting games, with a few contemporary upgrades. The first major change is the elimination of infinite combos that leave so many victims brimming with rage. Further, the game monitors infinite loops to make sure characters aren’t simply looping combos. All of this is done to maintain character and player balance so as not to favor any characters above another.

Reverge has also added a number of features to help less-skilled players, such as the option for forgiving input controls on combos. If a combo requires a 360 on the joystick and you don’t do it perfectly, the game will trust you and perform the combo anyway. There are also features for more inclined players, such as highly responsive blocks to block otherwise unblockable moves if timed perfectly.

Another fun feature is that the game is script based instead of hard coded meaning that the developers can add or change characters quickly and easily without recompiling the entire game. Though this may sound easier than it is, as all of the characters in Skullgirls are fully animated; not pixelated. Think Snow White, not Mario. What may look like cel-shading on the surface is actually one of the most visually stunning styles to emerge in video games in a hot minute.

Defining Feature: For an indie title, Skullgirls packs in enough features and content to ensure gamers get their money’s worth.

 

King Of Fighters 13 Gameplay Trailer »


 

The King of Fighters XIII
Release date: November 22, 2011

XIII looks to be a pretty noticeable change from its predecessors, but this change isn’t entirely unwelcome. Changing the camera as well as removing the Critical Counter and Guard Attack system, the game instead opts for more of a focus on super moves. The game also draws a number of elements from The King of Fighters games as far back as the late 90s; so longtime fans of the series are in for a little bit of retrograde action.

Defining Feature: Being able to draw from over a decade of past games, SNK Playmore may have just made the best King of Fighters incarnation yet.



Tekken X Street Fighter
  Release date: 2013

There isn’t much to say about Tekken X Street Fighter other than it is in fact being made. In July, producer Katsuhiro Harada stated (http://youtu.be/ymYRnT-yFNo) that the game was at “zero percent” and we haven’t seen any serious change since then. There isn’t reason to fret, however, as the game is still over a year off; set to release after its companion game Street Fighter X Tekken. Namco Bandai’s version of the crossover will feature Tekken controls and fighting styles, while drawing from Street Fighter in certain aspects such as projectiles.

Defining Feature: The combination of two of the most famous fighting game franchises ever will make for a fascinating mash-up.

Street Fighter X Tekken "Gem System" Trailer »



Street Fighter X Tekken 
Release date: March 6, 2012

Capcom’s take on the much-anticipated crossover is slated for an earlier release than Namco’s and will begin to try to explain how the two universes collided. Further, the game is set to feature Infamous’ Cole MacGrath in its Sony incarnations along with other guest fighters yet to be revealed. As Capcom is making the game, it will use Street Fighter controls with the option to use a modified version of Tekken’s controls.

Street Fighter X Tekken is interesting as it’s the first Capcom/Namco crossover game released in the US and it’s the first of a set of twin games produced by the rival companies. This game is sure to set the tone for Tekken X Street Fighter and throw down the gauntlet for Namco to take up. We’re all holding our breath that they do a good job.

Defining Feature: The combination of two of the most famous fighting game franchises ever will make for a fascinating mash-up.

 

Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 Extended Cinematic Trailer »


 

Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 
Release date: November 15, 2011

After the earthquake and subsequent tsunami in Japan earlier this year, planned updates for Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds were postponed. Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 is the middle ground between long-delayed DLC and new content packaged as an add-on. The add-on is set up much in the same way as its predecessor, with an easy learning curve and dozens of unique features. Also, to promote it, Capcom is offering a number of character skins depending upon where you preorder the game.

Defining Feature: The game is sure to feature more of what we know and love.

Nationally unacclaimed freelance writer Jonathan Deesing has been writing about video games for dozens of weeks. His professional knowledge ranges from skiing to Peruvian history and of course, anything with buttons. If you can't get enough of his musings, check out his Twitter feed.

The Future of Fighting Games: Looking Forward At Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Skullgirls, Street Fighter X Tekken, and More!
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