Capcom's annual Captivate event is happening in Miami this week, highlighting their plans for 2011. That means big updates and plenty of first looks for things to come. Here's the highlights:
The first thing from Capcom is a new IP they've unveiled. Dragon's Dogma looks to be a game to watch for fantasy nerds. But, as an open-world action game, rather than a traditionally styled RPG, the game could open up whole new audiences. It appears the player will need to coordinate their character (rogue, mage, or warrior) with three party members into fighting a whole host of mythic beasts, including one of my favorites, the Griffin.
If you're a fan of the Dead Rising franchise you'll be glad to know there's more coming. Dead Rising 2: Off the Record brings back Frank West, the protagonist from the first game, for a retelling of the second game from a different point of view. Confused yet? This also means the camera mechanic is making a return as well. It seems West's one time celebrity is fading too soon for his liking and he decides to reinvigorate his fame by participating in the Terror is Reality game show in Fortune City. Rest assured, combo weapons, looney outfits, and the violent stomping of zombies will all play a major role. One thing to really question, why is Frank dressed up like Jerry Lawler and bodyslamming zombies? Everyone knows you have to remove the head or destroy the brain, and extra clothes to prevent errant bites is always suggested.
If zombies aren't your thing, maybe you prefer fighting games. It's been a while since we've heard much news on the Street Fight x Tekken front. That's changed now. There are two games coming that mash up these franchises. Capcom's is the 2D version, a la Street Fighter IV. Namco will be releasing a 3D game more in the Tekken style. So far the character list includes Ken, Ryu, Chun-Li, Abel, and Guile from Capcom's franchise and Bob, Kazuya, King, Marduk, and Nina from Namco. Here's the trailer.
For those that like their 2D arcade fighters untainted by crossovers, there's more information about the Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition. Despite previous announcements, the new version will be coming to home consoles. Twice, in fact. It will be available first on June 7th as DLC, for $15. On June 28th there will be a new retail version released, game of the year style, for $40. The arcade version introduces new characters Evil Ryu, Oni Akuma, Yun, and Yang. It will also feature some balancing tweaks and other adjustments. I've been pretty liberal with my bashing of Activision for franchise milking, but Capcom is clearly still the first and the best. Activision at least does it with sequels, this will be Capcom's fourth retail release of the same game.
And that's enough about fighting, let's get back to zombies. When you think Capcom and zombies, that means Resident Evil. The latest in the series is Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City, a multiplayer squad-based shooter. There is a single player campaign, but this is clearly built for the four-person co-op, much like Left 4 Dead. It's also a bit of a throwback, as you'll be playing through Raccoon City in 1998, about the same time as the events of Resident Evil 2. Your team of Umbrella Security Squad personnel has all the right mix of character classes. Bertha is a medic, serving the buff and healing needs of the crew; Beltway is your demolitions man; Vector handles the stealth and recon; and Spectre looks to be the surveillance and brains behind the operation. All four can handle a gun, grenade, or close quarters brawling. Besides zombies, as if that isn't enough, the team will be squaring off against NPCs from franchise lore (notably Leon Kennedy) and the US Special Ops team operating in the city. The competitive multiplayer aspect will see Umbrella versus the Special Ops squad fighting one another in the midst of the undead horde. You'll even be able to utilize a "zombie shield" when under fire. The game is scheduled for late 2011.
Finally, I had heard a little about the upcoming Asura's Wrath, but not enough to decide if I was even interested. With the new information coming out now, I'm definitely going to be playing this game. As a god stripped of his power and place in the pantheon by the other gods, Asura has one tool left in his arsenal, uncontrollable rage. Apparently the former deity can be come so angry he sprouts four extra arms and can defeat planet-sized enemies by punching the shit out of their finger, which also happens to be the size of a major metropolitan city. How can this not be entertaining?
Looks like that's it for now. If I hear anymore news from the Capcom event I'll update it here. Otherwise, come back Friday for the next edition of Video Game Quick Hits, summarizing all the little bits of this week's gaming news from everywhere.