Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3

I know this game isn’t really new any more but after Max Payne and SSX its the next newest game I have and as promised I’m attempting to build up my game section, with a more respectable catalogue. I’m a relative newcomer to the Marvel vs Capcom series the original 3 being the first I’ve ever played. I wasn’t expecting quite what I got and I decided after not too long that I had to have it for myself, but with the offer of new characters including one of my favourite Marvel characters, Ghost Rider, the lure of the newer Ultimate edition was far too strong to resist.

Before I first played MVC3 my understanding was that it was a rival to the DC Universe/Mortal Kombat games, the same as every other platform fighter around at the moment but what I got was something with a complete style of its own. Here we have the closest thing you’re going to get to Super Smash Bros. on PS3 or XBox. It’s tag team insanity that becomes so addictive you can play it all night and not realise how long you’ve been going. It’s the only game, bar FIFA, that I’ve played on a latest gen console that has a versus mode more addictive than it’s campaign. As I mentioned in my SSX review these days there’s far too much emphasis on online multiplayer, that most titles seem to forget about multiplayer in person. Although it’s basic, playing with a couple of mates round is what makes this game great.

Playing versus online, though, I found is different kettle of fish. I can’t grasp the combo’s, fighters have never really been a strong point of mine but here I can’t seem to grasp any of the skills no matter how much I practice, so I tend to steer clear of multiplayer online. The arcade mode I also find pretty difficult but still provides some good entertainment if you’re a bit lonely. The Ultimate edition comes with the new Heroes and Heralds campaign which basically just adds another aspect to the game and I find is more fun to play through than the standard arcade mode. I must add though that it seems a bit unfair on fans who paid the same price for the original release to then just release the Ultimate edition where everything is better, seems like a shameless cash coup to me. But still this is a great game that reminds me of the days when I used to stay up all night at a sleepover bettering people in smash bros. and what fond memories they are.

SSX

While staying at the girlfriends house and consuming very little media I thought it time I added to my extensive collection of game reviews. To be honest I’m yet to really justify even having game reviews as a section, but I will attempt to improve it in the coming weeks. So this week I thought I’d rewind back a few months to the reboot of snowboarding juggernaut SSX. Now back in my GameCubing days I was a big fan of SSX3 which I bought pre-owned and probably because it was the only thing I could afford at the time, I became mildly addicted, it must be said, however I never really fell in love with the franchise the same way I had with, say, Need for Speed Underground or Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater; so when the re-boot of SSX was announced I wasn’t really that bothered.

But then upon a hazy evening of gaming in a friends uni dorm room playing the demo made me rather excited. I still umm-ed and arr-ed about buying it upon release day but after a few days I could no longer resist its temptation. Playing through the deadly descents campaign I found that the franchise had really found it’s own style for the first time. The graphics can actually compliment the breathtaking views they’re trying to re-create, the tricks remain as ridiculous as they ever have been and with the absence of a decent Tony Hawk or Need for Speed game in about five years means the game fills a hole that hasn’t been filled in a long time. The gameplay is a real triumph here.

On the other hand, though, after a while, it ends up becoming mundane. There is far too much emphasis in all EA games at the moment on making everything online based. Enjoy the campaign while you can because before you know it it’s over and then you’re left with global events and the world tour mode. First off you will love it, as I did, for a good few weeks I was happily entertained jumping from drop to drop setting times, scoring points and surviving without the required safety gear, it does provide a great amount of fun for your money. But the problem is only one person can be the best, only one person can top the leaderboards and anyone that’s ever seen me play will know it can never be me and that fact, in the end, leads to you giving up. While it is fun competing against friends it doesn’t provide you with quite the same satisfaction of completing a lengthy single player story, and this is where SSX’s biggest flaws lie. Let’s hope EA can realise that people want a combination of both single player and multiplayer in their titles and stop swaying to the emphasis on online competition in future.