Q&A: 'Marvel Vs. Capcom' devs on auto-combos and return to 2 vs. 2
MANILA, Philippines – Marvel Vs. Capcom: Infinite developers Sakurai Kansuke and Tomoaki Ayano were in the Philippines on Wednesday, August 9, to present the game and discuss its new features at an event hosted by PH game retailer Datablitz.
Some of these features were quite intriguing for serious fighting game fans. They've introduced the optional auto-combo system; returned to a 2 Vs. 2 format last seen in the first Marvel Vs. Capcom game, released in 1998; and reintroduced the use of Marvel's "Infinity Stones," first seen in 1995's Marvel Super Heroes fighting game.
Sakurai, the game's assistant producer, and promotion producer Tomoaki discussed these elements in our video interview above. We've also summarized their points below:
1) On one-button auto combos
The devs say that it's something to get gamers started. It's a way for them to attract new gamers that may want to try the game but are intimidated with how competitive Marvel Vs. Capcom scene has become.
"There are lots of newcomers to the franchise who want to try, but sometimes, especially in online battles, it's discouraging because they're always being beat and it's frustrating," the English-speaking Sakurai translates for Tomoaki.
It's an opportunity to offer the fun part to everybody, and if you want to brush up on your skills, you can do that too because the auto combos are optional and can be turned off anytime.
Sakurai clarified, however, that there's still a lot of depth to the game even with the addition of what is a casual feature.
"To enjoy fighting games, it's not only about if you're good or not," finishes Sakurai.
2) On the game's depth, in light of some elements being simplified
Sakurai highlights "Infinity Stones" in this sequence. There are 6 of these, and each has a unique basic ability (known in-game as the "Infinity Storm") and a unique super ability ("Infinity Surge").
The infinity stones can modify how a player uses a character, opening up the gameplay to a host of strategies and different playstyles.
3) A tournament for auto combo players?
They say it might be a fun idea to explore. Alongside the serious pro players, there could be a corner for a fun tournament in which auto combo is turned on.
4) On the e-sports scene's influence on game development
The developers say that they've always just focused on the gameplay – putting up the best roster of characters, and balancing the game – and generating hype for their titles. They do that, and if they can make the best game they can, they believe the esports community will follow.
"It's hard to say that we're making games considering esports. We want to support the whole esports [scene], and become bigger and bigger and have more fans. But [the rise of esports] didn't change our philosophy in developing games," said Sakurai.
"The order is not [that] we focus on esports [first], the first is always balance and making the game better."
Sakurai finished, "It's because the games are good, that it becomes an esport. Like Street Fighter IV – it offered that kind of experience. It triggered a part of the growth of esports. That's something always we've been chasing. And we will continue to focus on such things, and not only focus on 'esports,' the word.
5) On ditching 3 vs. 3 format and returning to 2 vs. 2
There are two reasons, according to the devs. First, it's for the beginners. With 3 players, it might be a little bit too much to know and manage 3 characters.
Second, the addition of the Infinity Stones. The stones are at the center of the strategy of playing this game, Sakurai said. With these, the stones act as modifiers and can feel like an additional character. With less in-fight characters to manage, players can focus on learning how they can creatively use the stones for maximum advantage and in creating their own playstyles.
The formula has certainly changed in the next MVC game, by simplifying some elements and adding new ingredients here and there.
Marvel Vs. Capcom: Infinite comes out on September 21 in the Philippines and other regions in Asia; and September 19 in the US and other western regions. The game will be available on the PS4, Xbox One, and Windows platforms. – Rappler.com