Ultimate Marvel Vs. Capcom New Character Guide: Marvel's Rookie Roster


Posted November 18, 2011 - By Garrett Martin

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Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3

You thought the battle was over. You defeated Galactus with your cross-company trio of Ryu, Captain America, and MODOK, and saved two worlds in the process. Little did you know that just a few short months later a dozen fighters would show up to ruin everything.

Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 arrived last week with twelve new characters itching for a fight--six famous faces pulled from the historic annals of each company. Today we look at the tale of the tape for Marvel's new combatants and point out a few comics worth reading to better understand their motivation as they wither under some online jerk's Sentinel spamming.

Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 "Doctor Strange" Missions Guide »

Fighter: Doctor Strange

First Appearance: Strange Tales #110, July 1963

Special abilities: He can do basically anything by making gang signs with his hands. In other words, magic.

Suaver than George Clooney, and more skilled than Gandalf, Doctor Strange would probably be the most powerful fighter in any Marvel vs. Capcom game if he hadn't been stripped of the title of Sorcerer Supreme. Strange might have lost his cosmic duties but he remains the most adept user of magic in the Marvel Universe. Created by Steve Ditko and Stan Lee, Strange was a skilled but arrogant surgeon who lost his livelihood after a drunken car wreck damaged his nerves. He discovered his true path after learning magic from the Ancient One and succeeding him as Sorcerer Supreme. For decades Strange has protected our dimension from such mystic entities as Nightmare, Shuma-Gorath, and the Dread Dormammu. He makes his fighting game debut in Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3, where he gets to show off the martial arts he's learned from his faithful manservant Wong.

Notable appearances: Strange Tales #130-146, by Steve Ditko and Stan Lee; Doctor Strange: A Separate Reality trade paperback, by Steve Engelhart and Frank Brunner; Brian K. Vaughan and Marcos Martin's "Doctor Strange: The Oath" miniseries.

Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 "Hawkeye" Missions Guide »

Fighter: Hawkeye

First Appearance: "Tales of Suspense #57," September 1964

Special abilities: He's the world's greatest archer and a prolific lover of superwomen.

Raised by carnies, fantastically skilled archer Clint Barton was coerced into crime under the guise of Hawkeye by Russian spy Natasha "Black Widow" Romanov. After quickly reforming, Hawkeye became one of the earliest members of the Avengers, serving under his hero and inspiration Captain America for years. Eventually the hot-headed Hawkeye became the leader of the West Coast Avengers, alongside his wife Mockingbird. After Mockingbird's death and the dissolution of the Avengers' west coast branch, Hawkeye left that superteam to lead the Thunderbolts, a group of former supervillains trying to reestablish themselves as crime-fighting heroes. Hawkeye later returned to the Avengers, spent a little bit of time dead before being brought back to life by a crazed Scarlet Witch, and eventually rescued a not-actually-dead Mockingbird from the shape-shifting aliens who had kidnapped her years earlier. He's now a teacher at Avengers High.

Notable appearances: Hawkeye #1-4, by Mark Gruenwald; West Coast Avengers # 1-102, by various creators; Thunderbolts # 20-75, by various creators.

Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 "Ghost Rider" Missions Guide »

Fighter: Ghost Rider

First Appearance: Marvel Spotlight #5, August, 1972.

Special abilities: He looks cool with his flaming skull and leather-daddy gear. Plus he can jump twenty buses at a time and is a demonic spirit of vengeance, or something.

Johnny Blaze was a daredevil stunt cyclist who sold his soul to Mephisto to save his adoptive father from cancer. In return Mephisto bonded Blaze with the demon Zarathos, whose presence contorted Blaze's appearance into the fiery skulled Ghost Rider. Blaze was cursed to travel the highways of America tracking down evil souls that had escaped from Mephisto's hellish realm. He briefly joined the Los Angeles-based superhero group the Champions. Eventually Blaze is able to separate his soul from Zarathos, ending his first tenure as Ghost Rider. Zarathos occasionally took on new hosts, including the Brooklyn teenager (and Blaze's long-lost brother) Danny Ketch, who served as Ghost Rider for most of the 1990s. The curse repeatedly returned to Blaze, though, who remains the most iconic Ghost Rider, and who was portrayed by the always restrained and humble Nicolas Cage in the recent Ghost Rider movies.

Notable appearances: Honestly, there aren't a lot of good Ghost Rider comics. He exists primarily because twelve-year-old boys think he looks awesome.

Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 "Iron Fist" Missions Guide »

Fighter: Iron Fist

First Appearance: "Marvel Premiere #15," May, 1974.

Special abilities: The mystical martial artist can tap into his chi energy to increase his physical skills to superhuman levels. He's also filthy rich.

Danny Rand, heir to the massive Rand fortune, was raised in the legendary city K'un-L'un, one of the mystical Seven Capital Cities of Heaven. He won a tournament to find the city's next champion, the Immortal Weapon known as Iron Fist. Later he returned to America to avenge his father's death, and became a costumed crime-fighter in New York. He met and became best friends with Luke Cage, the vigilante who protected Harlem under the name Power Man. Together Power Man and Iron Fist formed Heroes for Hire, a supposedly for-profit superhero team that was actually funded by Rand's fortune. After a patented superhero fake death Rand reconnected with his mystical roots and fought in the tournament of the Seven Champions. Later he joined the Avengers alongside his friend Cage.

Notable appearances: Immortal Iron Fist # 1-16, by Ed Brubaker, Matt Fraction, and various artists.

Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 "Nova" Missions Guide »

Fighter: Nova

First Appearance: "Nova #1," September, 1976.

Special abilities: Nova can tap into the Nova Force, the power source behind the Nova Corps that gives its users the ability to fly, absorb energy, and basically just wreck the hell out of the laws of physics.

You know that Green Lantern guy? That's pretty much exactly what Nova is, only with a helmet instead of a ring. Okay, his powers are different, but as the Earth-based member of a universal force of space-cops Richard Rider is like a young Hal Jordan. Nova was the last member of the Nova Corps when he was recruited, and tentatively learned how to use his new abilities while fighting crime in New York City and occasionally adventuring into outer space. Later on Nova cofounded the New Warriors, a group of young superheroes who after a long and respectable history somehow become incompetent overnight and accidentally blew up Stamford, Connecticut. Nova was in space that day, playing a vital role in the galaxy-spanning cosmic saga documented in the Annihilation comic and its various tie-ins. After saving all creation three or four times, Nova briefly joins the black ops Secret Avengers squad, before getting trapped in an alternate universe while saving ours once again.

Notable appearances: Annihilation: Nova #1-4, by Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning, and Kev Walker; Annihilation #1-6, by Keith Giffen and Andrea Di Vito.

Fighter: Rocket Raccoon

First Appearance: "Marvel Preview #7," Summer, 1976.

Special abilities: He's just a normal old raccoon who can fly spaceships, shoot like a champ, and brilliantly lead forces into battle.

Rocket Raccoon and his walrus buddy Wal Russ protected a portion of space inhabited by anthropomorphic animals who had tended a colony of mentally ill humans. He had a run-in with the Hulk but mostly didn't interact with the Marvel Universe at large. Years later Rocket Raccoon popped up in a new version of Marvel's cosmic Guardians of the Galaxy team, alongside such equally obscure characters as Star-Lord and Groot. He played a vital role in the Annihilation: Conquest miniseries. He's probably only in this game because of the goofy incongruity of a raccoon with a laser gun fighting an ancient Japanese wolf god.

Notable appearances: Rocket Raccoon #1-4, by Bill Mantlo and Mike Mignola; Annihilation: Conquest #1-6, by Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning, and Tom Raney; Guardians of the Galaxy #1-25, by Abnett, Lanning, and various artists.

Keep your browser at G4tv.com and keep hitting "refresh;" we'll have a guide to Capcom's new combatants from Ultimate Marvel Vs. Capcom 3 soon.

Ultimate Marvel Vs. Capcom New Character Guide: Marvel's Rookie Roster


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