Capcom Preview: Dark Void, Spyborgs, Marvel vs Capcom 2, Monster Hunter Freedom Unite

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The E3 Expo is just around the corner and late last week Capcom dropped by NYC to showcase a handful of games ahead of the games expo. On hand were the following titles: Spyborgs, Dark Void, Marvel vs Capcom 2 and Monster Hunter Freedom Unite. I wasn’t overly enthused to preview any of the games except for Marvel vs Capcom, but I rarely walk away from demos disappointed and this time was no different.

I’m still waffling over the Wii’s place in today’s console wars since I’ve yet to play a title that makes me scratch my head and say, “holy crap that was awesome.” Spyborgs didn’t have any such effect, but I can see that the AAA publishers are finally taking the platform seriously.

Spyborgs is a tag-team style game with three major characters that are cybernetically enhanced with distinct fighting styles, but I was only allowed to play with two of the three. Bouncer is a brawling ape-like humanoid, Clandestine is a stealthy blade-wielding vixen and Stinger was on the sidelines for this demo. Each hero possesses unique takedown maneuvers, but combined you can wreak havoc on enemies with devastating one-two combos. The control scheme wasn’t finalized so it was a bit wonky, but definitely playable. To complete a fatality-like move a colored Wiimote and Nunchuk appear on-screen with directional arrows that you’re meant to mimic if you’re in the mood to be destructive.

The graphics looked pretty poor even though Capcom claims the IP is pushing the graphics capabilities of the Wii. It’s far from being finished so I won’t pass judgment.

I haven’t been following Dark Void all that closely, but my interest was piqued after some hands-on time with the Airtight developed shooter. It’s a combination of on-foot and aerial combat that sounds daunting, but is quite easy to play.

The particular build that I played was a few weeks old and I was told that the aerial combat controls had been dumbed down since. It wasn’t particularly hard, but there’s a bit of a learning curve and that’s to be expected.

On-foot combat was straightforward and if you’ve played anything built on the Unreal Engine then you shouldn’t be surprised. What was most intriguing about Dark Void is the vertical cover system. You can actually see exactly what I played in the compiled video above.

Monster Hunter might be a hot seller in Japan, but it’s just not my cup of tea. It could be my ADD (self-diagnosed) that prevents me from enjoying handheld games, but Monster Hunter Freedom Unite for the PSP was a real snooze. I can see the appeal for others and I might be interested in playing with friends over an Ad Hoc network, but it took over 25 minutes for four us to kill one beast that’s 1/1000th the size of the largest beast in the game. I remain on the fence.

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Rounding out the hands-on session was Marvel vs Capcom 2. Everything you loved about the original makes a reprisal in the second gen game. You can flip between old school graphics (pixels galore) and up to date graphics that are silky smooth. You’ll want to get a Mad Catz Street Fighter controller for this game.

And in case you haven’t seen the Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles trailer for the Wii, I’ve included it just for fun.

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