A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds is an over-the-top fighting game featuring provocatively clad female fighters. Gameplay focuses on characters battling one another in a number of different ways and with various attacks, including punches, kicks, guns, throwing knives, explosions, lightning strikes, fireballs, and so forth. There isn't any blood, and the animated characters don't look real, but this game clearly glamorizes violence and depicts women as sex objects. Note, too, that online multiplayer supports open voice chat. Common Sense Media does not recommend non-moderated online communication for pre-teens.
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What's it about?
It's been an entire decade since we last saw a new Marvel vs. Capcom fighting game -- 2000's Marvel vs. Capcom 2: New Age of Heroes for the Sega Dreamcast -- but the once-popular series is back after a long hiatus in MARVEL VS. CAPCOM 3: FATE OF TWO WORLDS. This fast-paced, colorful brawler includes classic fighters -- such as Hulk, Wolverine, and Iron Man from the Marvel universe and Ryu and Morrigan from Capcom's Street Fighter and Darkstalkers franchises, respectively -- as well as new characters like Resident Evil's Chris Redfield, Thor, and Viewtiful Joe. Some characters have undergone a makeover, such as the uber-muscular Hulk, while others have a more retro look, such as the classic design of Iron Man's shiny red and gold suit. Capcom says they've gone for "living comic book art style" powered by a tweaked version of the advanced graphics engine used for Resident Evil 5.
Is it any good?
Whether you're partial to fighting games in general, a fan of this series specifically, or have a soft spot for characters from the Marvel and/or Capcom universes, this reimagined classic brawler will please. It features wild, over-the-top action, mid-air battles, terrific special effects, and multilayered combos designed to inflict as much damage on your opponents as possible. Gamers can also create their dream team of fighters for 3-on-3 tag team duels, which include "assist attacks" where one character helps out another. Online play is smooth and fast, and delivers five different modes from which to choose.
Capcom also spent a lot of time creating depth, offering many dozens of moves for hardcore players to master. Newbies, meanwhile, can use a simplified controls option to help them get into the swing of things. The story is shallow (hey, it's a fighting game) and we noticed some minor balancing issues, but there's very little to complain about in this thrilling fighter. Note: the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions of the game are the same.
Online interaction: Up to eight players can battle it out online and talk freely with one another via an optional headset microphone. That means players can easily share personal information and may be exposed to unsuitable language and subjects of discussion.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how fighting games can help hone a player's reflexes and hand/eye coordination. How might these skills help gamers in the real world?
Families can also discuss the depiction of female characters in video games. Fighting games tend to sexualize women. How do you think male players interpret these unrealistic images? How about female players? Can you think of other genres in which women tend to be portrayed in a more lifelike manner?
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.