Tag Archive: thanos

NYCC 2013: Ray Takes on Cosplayers!

It’s been a while since I’ve done a video of any kind, and I felt I needed to shake some rust off my interviewing skills. NYCC 2013 seemed like the perfect place to serve this purpose and so I went around the show floor and chatted up some awesome cosplayers. Enjoy!

Clash of the Classics

When I was just a boy, my friends and I would argue for hours on end on the playground about what superheroes would win in an imaginary fight when pitted against each other in all different kinds of wacky combinations. We didn’t just mix up teams from a particular universe, but came up with all kinds of scenarios that put our favorites against all manner of pop culture heroes and heroines. So, when games like Marvel Super Heroes and Marvel vs Capcom breathed even more life into these conversations, you can easily imagine why we were hooked.

Flash-forward nearly two decades, and these games have led to the production of one of the most successful and beloved fighting game franchises there is. Because of this, Capcom wanted to make sure that not only us older games didn’t forget our roots, but also show a new generation the foundations of what set us on our hypercombo-ing path.

Marvel vs Capcom Origins is no ordinary old-school compilation, though. Included with these two original games—which have also had some HD graphic upgrades—are 8-player online lobbies with spectator modes, replay saving, dynamic challenges that unlock levels, and points you can spend on unlockables like characters that were hidden in the originals, end movies, or concept art.

The best part of the dynamic challenges and unlocks, though, may be that they give both games an unprecedented amount of replayability. Plus, if you’re as big a fan as I am, you will absolutely geek out over the sketches and stills of your favorites heroes and villains, as well as the chance to easily unlock the hidden characters that we originally had to input an impossibly long code for—Dr. Doom and Thanos in Marvel Super Heroes and Gold War Machine, Hyper Venom, Orange Hulk, and Shadow Lady in MvC.

Another nice aspect of the game is that everything that made these fighters unique in the first place is still there so you can relive the experience as if it were 1995 again and you were feeding quarters into an arcade cabinet under pink neon lights. The gem system of Marvel Super Heroes (inspired by the Infinity Gauntlet story from Marvel comics) still allows you to enhance your players temporarily with the powers of Space, Power, Time, Soul, Reality, or Mind, and MvC still gives you dozens of assist characters and the Duo Team Attack where you and your partner can combine your hyper combos into one truly devastating maneuver.

Unfortunately, in terms of gameplay, the games are a little too demanding at times, as players who are used to modern fighters will quickly see the age on these classics. Sometimes a little clunky and even a bit frustrating, both these games—but especially Marvel Super Heroes—can feel stiff, and the smooth combo chains you may be used to from Marvel vs Capcom 3 are much harder to string together and pull off in these titles. It’s not that you won’t be able to get the hang of these characters eventually and have fun in the process, but if you play modern fighters like MvC 3 religiously and then expect to be able to jump right into these games, you might be caught a bit off-guard by the stark differences.

When all is said and done, Marvel vs Capcom Origins hits enough of the right nostalgic notes to make it a more than worthwhile purchase for long time fans. I mean, the game even offers zoomed out, angled camera camera views designed to replicate the experience of playing on an old wooden cabinet. Younger fans might be a little frustrated with the less than silky smooth controls, but they should still play in order to truly appreciate how far we’ve come with fighting games. They’ll even likely start creating fun memories of their own once they adjust to the outdate feel. All in all, Origins is a fine compilation that’s more than worthy of a download.

SUMMARY: Marvel vs Capcom Origins does a fine job of staying true to the originals, while the addition of dynamic challenges provide a new layer of addictiveness that helps to overshadow how much these games have aged in the past two decades.

  • THE GOOD: New leveling up and variety of unlocks compliment classic game play well.
  • THE BAD: Games show their age at times.
  • THE UGLY: Far and away, it’s Shuma-Gorath.

SCORE: 9.0

Marvel vs Capcom Origins is available on XBLA (Xbox 360) and PS3 (PSN). Primary version reviewed was for XBLA.

Avengers #11 Review

Originally Published: March 30, 2011, on Comicvine.com

The Hood continues his quest for the Infinity Gems and is already half way there with three in his possession. Can the Avengers prevent him for completing the gauntlet or will a new force arise to hinder his progress?

The Good

With Parker Robbins being the pursuer of the gems, this story is a clever twist of the original Infinity Gauntlet story arc, stirring up some great nostalgia for me from the early 1990s with that original story, and playing War of the Gems on my Super Nintendo. With all six gems located this week, Avengers #11 has me salivating in anticipation of the next issue.

Avengers #11 also enlightened me as I came to a new appreciation for the Red Hulk. His monthly may be teetering on the edge of oblivion in my comic book store pull box, but he definitely has a place in an ensemble and was a nice contrast to Thor and Namor while battling against Parker Robbins and it was very fitting that he was able to wrest the red power gem from him after an epic battle.

Couple all this great action and nostalgia with a surprise villain reveal of a being we haven’t seen in quite some time who has become aware of The Hood’s quest and the pieces are in place for one of the more interesting story arcs I’ve read in a while to play out in earth-shattering detail.

The Bad

Although the overall story progressed considerably with all the gems being located now, most of this action took place in only half the book as the other half was The Watcher providing narration over Parker Robbins’ battle with the Red Hulk in order to set up future issues in this arc by explaining how Parker Robbins does not know the power he is playing with.

This also lessened Parker Robbins as an overall threat to the Avengers, even though he has three Infinity Gems. This supposedly huge player in the Marvel underworld keeps losing power and then regaining it, but then gets downplayed simply as someone who is just a common thug that keeps happening onto these outlandish scenarios. If Marvel is going to have him be a major player, then they need to treat him as such. Otherwise stop featuring him as one and leave him alone because last I checked you had to be something pretty special to wield an Infinity Gem.

The Watcher narration also provided a pacing problem. Half the book is this long drawn out battle between Red Hulk and The Hood over the power gem and then the other half sees two more gems found and another change hands. It felt like crawling up to the line at a red light and then slamming on the gas when you saw green.

The Verdict

Avengers #11 harkens back to a classic Marvel story arc and sees more heroes than ever trying to prevent the unthinkable from happening. With an epic battle between the Red Hulk and Parker Robbins serving as the background for a lot of Watcher narration, this would actually be a great spot for someone to jump into this arc as the first half of the book will bring you up to speed on all you need to know from here on out. If you’ve been reading this book though, they try to apologize for the replay session by forwarding the plot tremendously in the last half by uncovering the remaining gems and throwing in a surprise villain reveal that will make fans of the original Infinity Gauntlet arc squeal in delight.

The book has some pacing problems and doesn’t know if it wants Parker Robbins to be a Grade-A villain or a chump, but aside from this it has the makings to be one of the more interesting reads in the coming months and this would be a great time to get on board if you haven’t already.