Speaking as a fan of Capcom’s Vs. series, this latest installment hits much and misses very few. Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars (TvC) satisfies the hardcore, while pleasing the newbies. The game has been condensed and simplified from its previous installments to 3-buttons and 1-help button, but it doesn’t take anything away from the skills necessary to play competitively (which is really what the hardcore care about right?). Also, TvC has gone back to teams of two with even less characters to choose from compared to the vast cast and 3-on-3 action introduced in Marvel vs. Capcom 2. Although, these seem like steps backwards, the game still packs just as big of a punch. The 2-on-2 keeps the action more tame, which is either a good or bad thing considering your preference. And the fewer characters isn’t too bad since all the characters are all really different, so there is enough variety. Some have complained you may not know all the characters on the Tatsunoko side, but really this is a game review, not a “I hope this game sells” rant.
TvC has everything a hardcore fighter would want to look for in a fighting game. In many of Capcom’s fighters, you have a super meter that you can build up to five times which let’s you use super moves. But TvC has added additional usage of your super meters. Simple combos can be easy to pull off, but those who want to be the best will need a bit of practice. Any player with half a brain can pull off a 6-7 hit combo, but the difficulty arrives when you begin taking advantage of some of the newer mechanics added to this latest installment. Mid-combo switching really extents a combo when used correctly. This is where some of the super meter comes into play as this switch off to your partner costs you one bar. Another new feature that extents combos is called the “Baroque Cancel.” After sacrificing some life from your health bar you become a colorful rainbow of a man (or woman) and can pull off combos you normally couldn’t. “Mega Crash” is a defensive move that allows you to break out of a potentially devastating combo, but you have to sacrifice some health and special bars. The last new feature in TvC that I had not seen in earlier Vs. games are what I call “counter-specials.” These are super moves that are triggered when your opponent physically attack you while you brace yourself for a short moment. All these new gameplay mechanics do nothing but add to the depth of the game, and should get hardcore fighters interested.
TvC’s controls are very easy to learn, but it gets even easier. You can use the Classic controller and Gamecube controller, but Wii remote turned sideways or with nunchuck is a totally different story. This is where the newbie of the newbs can get their satisfaction. This is button mashing paradise. Super moves are done simply by pressing no more than two buttons at the same time. While I was playing with some friends the term “Daddy Mode” was coined. This pretty much means that this mode was included simply to have fathers play with their kids, since Daddy will like it and maybe even buy a sequel. Anyone can play with these simplified controls and you know what? It’s pretty fun!
Graphics are as far as I think they can be pushed on the Wii, especially with the style they went for in this game. TvC is also very colorful, which is nice eye candy for players and spectators alike. The music is forgettable, but gets the job done (I really do wish they kept the Japanese TvC tracks). I am satisfied as long as a game’s music isn’t annoying. After that it’s really up to a person’s tastes.
Like all fighters, TvC is not immune to getting boring rather quickly. Replay value isn’t exactly high after beating Arcade mode several times. Sure there is a Time attack, Survival and Training mode, to extend the single player experience, but we know those can only get you so far. Luckily, there is Nintendo Wi-Fi mode for one-to-one battles with the world or with a friend. Adding friends is a 12-digit process, but Wii owners should be used to this by now. The battles are pretty seamless, which is hard to find with Wii titles. There are leaderboards and a ranking system for those who care, so online should keep this title in your Wii for a bit longer than expected.
Overall, Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars is a fun time no matter who you’re planning to play with. Unfortunately, single player goes as far as a 2D fighter can take you with its standard array of modes both on and offline. TvC is still one of the best fighting game experiences out there today. Definitely check it out as it is totally worth at least a rental.
- Game: Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars
- Platform Reviewed: Wii
- Release Date: 1/26/2010
- Developer: Eighting
- Publisher: Capcom
- MSRP: $49.99
- Additional Info: A copy of this game was provided to DualShockers, Inc. by the publisher for purposes of this review.