(originally posted: August 17, 2011)
Regardless of my personal feelings of a franchise being milked to the bone, downloadable content for those products will always remain a possibility for them in this day in age. Whether it’s a tournament mode for Super Street Fighter IV or a character download for Marvel vs Capcom 3, there’s always a wealth of opportunities in terms of additional content. While some dress them up as an excuse to release a full fledged retail title at 1/3 less the average retail price, others can be a generously priced, or even free download for those invested in the product.
With the imminent release of Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3, gamers are witnessing a line up of characters that, to be frank, seem to be mostly the B-listers, rather than the mostly heavy hitter lineup already present on the stand alone version of Marvel vs Capcom 3. I’m not taking away anything from a franchise character like Frank West, Phoenix Wright or Dr. Strange, but with several perennial heavy hitters like Mega Man and Venom no where to be found, it seems that there’s a movement towards certain characters from Marvel and Capcom that are slowly becoming a more established presence, rather than adding in those that are more of a staple to each company.
For kicks, I decided to use my intermediate knowledge of Capcom franchise characters, as well as my somewhat old school, yet mostly forgotten Marvel Universe knowledge in selecting the eight characters that this fighting game franchise will most likely never see. Although Marvel is now owned by Disney, I will not pull any obscure Disney references into this list (Like a playable Oliver from Oliver & Company, with a lvl 3 super being a sing-a-long). They will be a mix of Marvel and Capcom characters that might not be the most well known (C-list, maybe even H-list here and there) as well as how plausible they would be in this crossover battle. Then again, if someone like Phoenix Wright can make it in, who’s to say none of these characters could fit in as well?
Howard the Duck (Marvel)
Claim to fame: Short lived comic series in the 70′s, feature length film from executive producer George Lucas, rare cameo appearances in She-Hulk and Spider-Man based comics.
Powers: Howard the Duck has no powers, though he is a 3 foot tall duck who knows Quack Fu. He smokes more cigars than J. Jonah Jameson, Wolverine and Nick Fury combined.
Appeal to those previously unaware of their existence?: The character himself has a certain amount of charm, but may not resonate well with those with the most faint of recollections of him.
Plausibility: Howard the Duck can more than work within the UMVC3 universe. A short stature fighter, up close character like Viewtiful Joe with a reliance of hand to hand combat, with counter moves similar to Wesker and Taskmaster, could definitely be plausible. If desperate enough, Howard can pull out the laser vehicle from his feature film as a super, similar to the Rush Drill Mega Man had in MVC and MVC2.
Carlos Miyamoto (Capcom)
Claim to fame: One of three playable characters in Final Fight 2, featured in Alex’s ending in Capcom Fighting Evolution.
Powers: He’s a “ninja”…that’s about it.
Appeal to those previously unaware of their existence?: Barely anyone who has even played the Final Fight franchise will recall Carlos. He was ugly, poorly dressed and lacked any kind of positive traits.
Plausibility: Pretty much none. In Final Fight 2, Carlos was the middle ground fighter; average size, average speed, average strength, average…carpentry skills? You could have called him General Generic and he would have lived up to that moniker. His special attack has him swiping his katana all around him, which wouldn’t really matter much in UMVC3. Strider can pull of bladed weapon combat much better and Ryu can pull off up close martial arts a lot better. If shoehorned in, Carlos would definitely give Roll tier a run for its money!
Claim to fame: One of the more powerful antagonists in the Marvel Universe and an adversary of Thor.
Powers: Limitless stamina, strength that exceeds Thor, loses/gains power overall if deprived/surrounded by mystical/psionic powers.
Appeal to those previously unaware of their existence?: Longtime fans of The Mighty Thor would recognize Mangog, most other comic enthusiasts would not. Unless Mangog takes a change in art direction, his visual appeal will not grab anyone who didn’t previously know who he was.
Plausibility: Surprisingly, Mangog would be a rather functional character to add into UMVC3. He’s slightly above average in agility and speed, but can be placed in the stereotypical mold of the giant sized characters and their sluggish speeds. Not only could Mangog suffice as a character with long arms, but he also has mystical energy blast capabilities. He could easily be a huge character that can excel at ranged and up close combat.
Claim to fame: Had a cup of coffee in Street Fighter: The Movie.
Powers: The uncanny ability to be completely overlooked by anyone who has seen Street Fighter: The Movie.
Appeal to those previously unaware of their existence?: The only people that will really notice that Sawada made it into UMVC3 as DLC are hardcore Street Fighter fans that are wondering how Sawada made it in, yet M. Bison, Sagat, Blanka and others have not.
Plausibility: Sawada in general was an enigma to Street Fighter: The Movie. Teleports, hybrid Guile and Fei Long attacks and other oddities in his move repertoire, Sawada could make a legitimate claim as a viable piece of DLC to add to the UMVC3 roster. With the number of Street Fighter characters in general exceeding at least five dozen, Sawada would be met with more complaints than ever having a chance to see if he truly would be a flash in the pan fighter. But really, would you deny a character with a super that looks as ridiculous as this?!
Claim to fame: Over 5.5 billion years old, completely golden in color, once recovered the Space Gem from the belly of Galactus.
Powers: He runs fast. Though his foot speed is clocked in at orbital velocity, his flight speed reaches warp speeds. Ironic, huh? He also has a virtually immortal body, doesn’t age, and uses his cosmic life force to project energy blasts and rearrangements of matter on a planetary scale.
Appeal to those previously unaware of their existence?: People will easily gravitate to his look and wonder “why has the Silver Surfer upgraded his status to Gold, and where is his surfboard?” Developers can easily make his golden sheen glow, shine or look more than presentable. In terms of people caring whether this character existed in the first place, his history isn’t very decorated. More comic book readers will know who Howard the Duck and Mangog are before they can point out who the Runner is.
Plausibility: Out of every character listed, Runner would probably be the most plausible comic book character to turn into a fighting game character. His foot speed can be parlayed into his walk speed or used as a tool his his offensive arsenal. Flight can come into play as well and become one of the fastest to recover from a flight start up. Energy blasts are no-brainers and his health can be somewhat reflected off his his virtually immortal body. He can either be impressive, or Phoenix-like broken.
Claim to fame: He’s a walking block of tofu, armed only with a knife and a handful of herbs, trying to survive the zombie filled streets of Raccoon City.
Powers: The ability to replace chicken in a meal, with a plethora of ways you can prepare it. That’s about it, but hey, that’s better than Carlos!
Appeal to those previously unaware of their existence?: Those who have played the Resident Evil series since the beginning will know who Tofu is and his significance. While not directly related to the developing story arc, Tofu is an unlockable character in Resident Evil 2 that can be played in a mini-game called “Tofu Survivor” which is a harder version of “The Fourth Survivor.” While the star of The Fourth Survivor has guns and limited ammo, Tofu will only have a knife, making his mini-game much more difficult to complete.
Plausibility: It’s a block of tofu with hands, a beret and a knife…what do you think? They could easily give him some ballistic weaponry, but then he’d be a white block version of Chris, or even Jill from MVC2. Out of every character featured on this list, Tofu has nearly no plausible way to be added as a standalone character.
Claim to fame: One of the D-listers (from what I can remember) in Wolverine’s rogue gallery, has apparently had run ins with each other as early as World War I.
Powers: Nearly his entire exterior is coated in Adamantium, physical strength yet to be fully revealed, limited healing factor abilities, retractable Adamantium claws on the tips of each finger that held a potent hallucinogenic poison.
Appeal to those previously unaware of their existence?: From what I’ve known about Cyber, he was never one of the more significant enemies of Wolverine. Things could have changed though. The metal exterior Cyber possesses does look wicked, though would get people wondering why Colossus wasn’t added in his place.
Plausibility: Cyber’s move-set could work as a hybrid between Wolverine and Sabretooth, with a more blatant emphasis towards what Sabretooth used to do in X-Men vs Street Fighter and Marvel vs Capcom 2. While MVC3 has Wolverine and X-23, there’s no real reason to have a third character that would play too closely to those two.
Claim to fame: One of four new characters to the never released in the US sequel to Saturday Night Slam Masters, called Ring of Destruction: Slam Masters II.
Powers: Wraith is a wrestler with supernatural powers. With a snake-like head and neck, Wraith can extend his face towards his opponent and bite them. He’ll perform throws with his mouth biting on the mid section of the opposition and either flinging them to the side, or jumping straight up and thrashing them onto the ground. Wraith can also spin his head around and emit a fiery shield that stays close to him while his head spins around.
Appeal to those previously unaware of their existence?: It’s bad enough that hardly anyone will recall Saturday Night Slam Masters, but the fact that Wraith is from a never released in the US sequel, means he’s deeply embedded into obscurity. The thing is, Wraith is actually one of those characters that would fit in rather well into the whole UMVC3 universe. His look is unusual, and could pass more as a Darkstalkers character than anything, but has a realistic chance of gaining attention from those who’ve never heard of either the sequel he was in, or the series in general.
Plausibility: Behind Runner, Wraith could more than likely mesh into UMVC3‘s DLC world. He can be mostly considered a hybrid grappler/close melee offense character with a couple of minor mid range gimmicks thrown in. Think Alex from the Street Fighter III series, or even Abel from Street Fighter IV. Hey, if SonSon could make an appearance in MVC2 after 96% of all gamers not knowing that SonSon was a legitimate franchise character back in the days, Wraith could more than pass as a viable choice.
Originally I had penned in five characters in total between Marvel and Capcom that I thought would never make it in as DLC. I could have easily done a lot more, but I want to see who you guys and gals think would be a character from the Marvel and Capcom universe that would never make it in as DLC. Leave a comment below with your selections!