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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Why the fighting genre will never die

    X, A, B, B, Y, down-sweep-right. Cue fireball finisher. Game over. On paper these inputs don’t sound so interesting, but they are the basis for a genre that has survived and prospered longer than any other.

    Welcome to the world of the one-on-one fighter. This is not for the casual crowd.

    The fighter has yet to go the way of the side-scroller or the beat-’em-up. It is alive. Thriving, even. Something about the overall design of a premier fighter reeks of quality; the chance to throw a literal beatdown on your closest friend while sitting next to each other on the couch, draws gamers like no other.

    While split-screen play has all but died out in most games, it survives with fighters because it never ceases being fun. The concept has spread even further in this new era of online play as we can now take to the leader boards and see whose skills stack up. The opportunities supplied for the competitive spirit are more numerous than ever. It’s only enhanced by the technical skill required to master different characters and the true dedication needed to master them all.

    When done right, there are very few types of games that match up.

    Case in point: “”Marvel vs. Capcom 2: New Age of Heroes.”” If there is a game with a longer, more avid following, it hasn’t spawned a newly announced sequel. Fans of the game have played it for 10 years solid without ever growing tired of it. They’ve always clamored for a sequel and publisher Capcom has always turned the other cheek and refused. Until now, that is, when they recently released a 30-second cinematic trailer announcing a true sequel.

    One thing is certain: “”Marvel vs. Capcom 3″” will undoubtedly have the largest fighting game release ever, regardless of the actual quality of the finished product. Just like fans of first-person shooters changed the way shooters were made by flocking to the release of “”Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare,”” fans of fighters have the same potential to prompt change, here. Finally, we might see true resurgence in our favorite immortal battles.

    Of course, no true development can happen without the proper baby steps first. There are arguments as to how much you can truly update a fighter; the newly minted “”Street Fighter 4″” squashed those arguments immediately with its updated visuals and mechanics, while still managing to preserve the spirit of the originals. Having to follow in the footsteps of a very successful franchise is no easy task, but with the right development team “”Street Fighter 4″” became the true spiritual successor to the wildly popular “”Street Fighter 2″” and one of the most successful fighters in the last decade.

    Whether “”Marvel vs. Capcom 3″” lives up to the hype remains to be seen. However, we can be sure the game will do its best to wow the faithful masses, offer up strong competitive play and update some of the dated mechanics from the franchise’s past.

    In the end, though, it may come down to how well it can preserve the spirit that keeps the fighting genre alive. The spirit that rewards perseverance, dedication and dignity keeps gamingfans mashing buttons many long nights, surrounded by friends and competing to be crowned the best of them all. If “”Marvel vs. Capcom 3″” can capture it, we may have another long and awesome 10 years of fighting madness to look forward to. Here’s hoping.

    Now pass the popcorn.

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