After months of silence, the floodgates have now opened and we’ve just gotten a ton of new information on Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite. Aside from the new story and gameplay trailers, a number of journalists got their chance to play a build of the game at a recent press event.
A number of sites have now posted their own impressions of the game (including Game Informer, who has a massive list of bullet points). We’ve done our best to compile and organize these details below.
Bringing back classic controls and mechanics
When it was revealed that Norio Hirose (programmer for some of the original Marvel Vs. games from the ’90s) was the director of the game, many people expected a lot of stuff from those games to make a return. And it seems that those people will not be disappointed.
The most obvious thing taken from the older games is the control scheme: gone is the controversial three-strength light/medium/heavy control scheme from MvC3. In its place is a modified version of Marvel vs. Capcom 2’s control scheme, with two punch and two kick buttons. To help players more familiar with MvC3’s control scheme however, the game does have a universal launcher in crouching heavy punch, similar to the S button in the previous game.
Meanwhile, with assists gone, the assist buttons in that control scheme are replaced with the Tag and Stone button. More on that later.
The control scheme is not the only thing taken from the classic games, there are hints of other mechanics from them as well. The most obvious is the game’s OTG system. Just like in the older games, almost any low-hitting normal can OTG, unlike in MvC3 where only a select number of attacks could do so.
Another returning mechanic is how when characters are turned around in mid air, their attacks now auto-correct. Again, this was something that was present in the older games that was missing in MvC3.
Infinity Stones are truly outrageous
The one big new system that the game brings in are the Infinity Stones. While these were present as the Infinity Gems in 1995’s Marvel Super Heroes, how they work here is a little different. How they work seems to be a hybrid of Capcom vs. SNK 2’s Groove system and Street Fighter V’s V-System. Each player now selects an Infinity Stone at character select (similar to CvS2’s Grooves). In game, the stones have a separate meter that can be filled either by taking damage, or by using their abilities–similar to the V-gauge in SFV.
Each stone has a unique ability called an Infinity Surge that can be used with the Stone button. For example, the Time Stone’s ability is a dash that goes through the opponents, the Space Stone pulls them closer to you (similar to Magneto’s move), and the Power Stone sends them flying across the screen for a wall bounce.
In addition to these, each stone has a powerful, meter-powered activation called an Infinity Storm. These are more similar to what we had in Marvel Super Heroes–except much crazier! For example, the Space Stone creates a box around the opponent preventing them from moving and tagging out. This box also serves as a wall for extended combos. More benign-looking is the Time Stone’s activation, which simply speeds up attacks. The Power Stone’s activation, on the other hand, just flat out increases the damage and hit stun of every move.
Testing out mechanics for beginners
With a new game comes some new mechanics to try to help out casuals and beginning players. What’s interesting is that some of these mechanics are not finalized, and only being tested out in this build. What we’re referring to here are the inputs for some moves. Recently, word spread out that dragon punch-style moves were getting their inputs changed from forward, down, down-forward, to just a double tap down. Well, it turns out that that’s only partly true.
In the test build shown to the press, some characters did have their dragon punch moves changed to a double-tap down, however this wasn’t the case for everyone. For example, Ryu still had the classic forward, down, down-forward input for his Shoryuken.
Now, whether or not this makes it in the final game seems to be up in the air. According to former Shoryuken editor-in-chief Ian Walker–who was at the event–the simplified motions were touted as a feature. Meanwhile, Game Informer has stated that they were told that the change wasn’t final yet.
Other changes to inputs are the removal of sonic boom and half-circle motions. The latter is similar to what Lab Zero did for Skullgirls, which also lacks half-circle motions.
Another beginner-friendly mechanic in the game is “auto combo.” By simply hitting the light punch button, players will be able to perform a basic chain into launcher, into an air chain combo. This is similar to the auto-combo in games such as Under Night IN-BIRTH EXE:Late and The King of Fighters XIV. However, unlike those games, doing an auto-combo does not necessarily do less damage than a normal combo. The thinking here seems to be that doing combos the usual way will still eventually net more damage once people get creative–and creativity seems to be at the core of this game, thanks to its free tag system. More on that later.
One thing that does seem to get a damage reduction are what are called “Easy Hyper Combos.” Hitting both heavy punch and heavy kick will trigger a level 1 hyper combo. However, it does seem that the damage from these is reduced, compared to doing them normally.
More content, especially for single players
If there’s one thing that turned off a lot of gamers in Street Fighter V, it was the lack of modes–especially single player modes in the game. It seems that Capcom has learned from their mistakes, as Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite is set to launch with a number of single player modes as well.
We already know that there’s a story mode, thanks to the story trailer and earlier comments. Now, it’s being reported that the story mode will clock in at about two hours in length. While this is shorter than Street Fighter V’s cinematic story expansion (which was added to the game later down the line), the latter did tend to drag the longer it went on.
In addition to story mode, we can also confirm that the game will have a proper arcade mode. The lack of this mode is something that Street Fighter V continues to be criticized for to this day, so this should help MvC:I in the eyes of more casual players.
The game will also have a Mission Mode. This mode will supposedly help get players up to speed on how to play the game.
For those who like collecting in-game items, artwork, etc. these can be unlocked by playing story and arcade mode. The gallery where these are viewed is hosted by Tony Stark and Dr. Light.
Tag anywhere, any time
When Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite was first announced, the biggest bit of news–at least for series veterans–was the removal of assists in favor of a heavily revamped tag system. Unlike in previous games, tagged-in characters no longer stop and pose but are free to move and attack when they come in. With the new build, how much this new tag system changes the game has been revealed.
Aside from the fact that tagged-in characters are free to move and attack as soon as they’re in, an even bigger change now is how characters can tag in at just about any time they want to. They can do it in the middle of an attack, or even during a hyper combo (which is how the game now seems to handle delayed hyper cancels).
The important detail in the new system is that, even after having called in a tag, a character will still perform the move that they were doing. For example, a basic setup here can be doing a heavy air attack on an airborne opponent, and then tagging in for a cross under mix up as the opponent blocks the initial attack. Combine this with the fact that you can tag in multiple times in a single combo, and we can see that the system really allows for the creativity that the Marvel Vs. series is known for.
Tagging is also part of the game’s new combo-breaking mechanic. Perhaps “combo breaking” is the wrong term for it, as it doesn’t actually break the combo. Instead, for the cost of two bars of meter, players can tag in their second character to try to save their teammate. The limit here seems to be that this can only be done when a character is low on life (when the DANGER sign flashes on their life bar). Also, it does carry the risk of getting “happy birthdayed.”
That’s right, you can still catch an opponent entire team in a combo. Unlike in MvC3 though, the tagged-in character does not take additional damage.
Characters are getting new stuff
In addition to all the new system mechanics, the characters are all getting new things in their arsenal. Some of these compliment their existing playstyles, while other change the way the play altogether.
The Hulk seems to have gotten some great movement tools, not only does he get wall jump, he gains a new dashing move as well.
Morrigan has gained a new aerial move where she summons a blade in front and below her. However, this apparently comes at the cost of losing her bullet hell shenanigans from Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3.
Strider Hiryu has a new slashing attack out of his wall stick. The interesting thing about this is that it hits behind the opponent. This should allow for some interesting mixups when combined with the tag system.
Captain America seems to have a new angle on his Shield Slash, alongside a new counter move with his shield. The latter also has anti-ground and anti-air variants.
Chun-Li regains a cinematic version of her Shichisei Senkuu Kyaku super from the previous Marvel Vs. titles.
The worthy thunder god Thor can now charge up Mewmew *ahem* Mjolnir and toss it across the screen. Interestingly enough, Thor becomes invulnerable to projectiles while charging up the hammer.
Iron Man gains two new moves: Repulsor Array, which we already saw a glimpse of in the first gameplay trailer, and a new Smart Mine. Interestingly enough, Peter “Combofiend” Rosas actually explained the purpose of these additions to Game Informer. Prior to this, his playstyle was somewhat undefined; these new moves will help define Iron Man more as a keepaway character.
The new characters also have some interesting stuff. X gets his various armors as part of his hypers. His level 1 gives him his classic white armor from Mega Man X and acts similar to Arthur’s armor hyper in MvC3. Meanwhile, his level 3 has him don his Ultimate Armor from X4, however this doesn’t stick around after the hyper.
Ultron has multiple beams that he can fire off. In addition to this, he can also call drones to help him pin down his opponent. This is quite similar to Sabertooth in the older games, who could summon his (then) assistant Birdie for attacks similar to the assists in the later games.
Aside from all the details we’ve listed above, there are a host of other details that have been noted by the various journalists who’ve tried the game out.
The biggest one has to be the changes to the number of bars of hyper meter. Unlike previous games, MvC:I has 4 bars of meter, a halfway point between the 5 bars of the 3v3 games and the 3 bars of the previous 2v2 ones.
Wavedashing–hitting down to cancel a dash, before dashing again–is still in. However, it’s apparently more effective to just let dashes play out. This seems quite similar to the original MvC, where it was better to just dash in with the top tier characters.
Apparently, push blocking can reflect projectiles when timed correctly. The question right now is can everyone can do it, or just Captain America? Game Informer says it’s the former (everyone), however IGN states that only Cap can do this.
As for online play, the game will use rollback netcode similar to Street Fighter V. Unlike SFV however, Capcom will now be using matchmaking servers from Sony and Microsoft, instead of their own. Since it likely wont be part of the Capcom Fighters Network however, combined with it being on rival consoles, one wonders if any sort of cross platform play will be possible.
Just like Street Fighter V, Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite is running on Unreal Engine 4. As for the game’s artstyle, they deliberately chose to go for a more cinematic style now, instead of MvC3’s more toon-shaded style.
While that’s a lot of information, there’s still a lot we don’t know about Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite. With the game still five months out and E3 just around the corner, we’re sure to learn more about the game in the near future.