Marvel VS Capcom 2: New Age of Heroes


REVIEWAfter five highly-successful Marvel fighting games from Capcom, MVC2 exploded into arcades in February 2000. The response was incredibly positive from the get-go, but the game soon became a phenomenon. Thanks to the iconic roster and addicting gameplay, MVC2 would stand strong for over a decade in the competitive scene!

Legendary good times & good teams on this selection screen.

The arcade version launched with only 24 playable characters (eventually expanding to 56 when all fighters are unlocked). When the arcade version of MVC2 first released, the machine would gain experience points via tokens inserted (10 pts per token) or time passing (100 pts every three hours). As EXP points built up, characters and bonus character colors would eventually unlock. (That means if MVC2 was popular at your arcade, characters would be unlocked faster!) This EXP system kept players coming back to the arcade to play MVC2 on the daily (if the addicting gameplay wasn't enough).

In retrospect, MVC2 surely became one of the most iconic 2D fighting games of all time. With the exception of boss characters, every Marvel character to ever grace a Capcom fighting game is brought back as a playable character. Of course, a few handfuls of old favorites from the Capcom and Marvel universes join the fun, including some brand new Capcom character designs like Amingo and Ruby Heart.

It's Mahvel baby!!!


The frantic 3-on-3 tag team gameplay is unlike anything seen in any other fighting game. It could be summed up as "Street Fighter to the extreme," with lasting appeal that so few other fighting games could ever hope to achieve. MvC2 gives the player the ultimate freedom of creativity... enabling players form a team of 3 characters, with a special "assist" technique for each individual character. This opens up a seemingly limitless amount of strategies and possibilities. Each character has 3 assist types, which can make or break your team's defense, offense, combos... and maybe even "coolness factor". That said, Marvel VS Capcom 2 is a game that just never goes out of style.

is incredibly fast-paced, even faster than the prequels (which were known for their speedy gameplay). There's no room for error. One mistake, and you could quickly loose a character (or two, or three)! A high-level match is even difficult to follow for casual viewers, but a high-level player will feel in control of their team at all times (and ultimately their opponent's team)! The gameplay is amazingly fun to watch when two skilled players go at it, and even more-so to play. Why? Too many reasons to list, but I'll try... Tag-team assists (which can be punished/combo'd by the other team), super move cancels, triple tag team supers, ridiculous combos, and even infinite combos... which both make and break MVC2 at a high level. The open-ended combo system is the best aspect about the game (for better or worse), and it's what truly makes MvC2 stand out from the crowd.


Nothing beats high-level matches with low-tier characters.


When Marvel VS Capcom 2 hit the scene, it was pretty much deemed "god-like" among all respectible fighting game players (and still is). Years later in the game's lifespan, countless "cheap" infinite combos and corner traps that were discovered by high level players. That said, certain teams in MvC2 can easily be considered over-powered, as the top tier characters reign supreme over low-tiers. Even so, clever players can use low-tiers in surprising ways and even beat some of the top-tier monsters... if you have the skills.   (It's truly a beautiful thing when the underdogs win.) Even though the game isn't balanced, MVC2 is still incredibly fun. The fact that certain combos exist make the game memorable and legendary.

MVC2 is a pretty game, but actually not as polished as some of the prequels. MVC2 isn't perfect from a presentation standpoint. I always wondered why the character walking animations appeared "choppy" right before the fight begins. The core animations of the 56 characters during gameplay are solid as expected, but why do characters have to look like they're "skating" across the stage before the fight? Character-specific theme songs from the earlier titles are also gone (sadly yet understandably), but the "jazzy" soundtrack of MvC2 is something special all on its own.


One of the best character rosters of ALL TIME.


The Dreamcast port was pretty much arcade perfect, and was the version I played the most outside of the arcades. The later PS3 / Xbox ports include graphic filters which nicely smooth out the 2D sprites, as well as the long-awaited online mode! MvC2 online on PS3 / Xbox is straight-forward, though a bit light on features. Battle Lobbies could've been designed a tad better and have provided more options, but at least the netcode is solid enough to allow players from across the globe to enjoy MvC2 online with minimal lag.

Love it or hate it, Marvel VS Capcom 2 is a legendary fighting game that introduced some of the most unique & enjoyable gameplay mechanics known to man (still to this day). It's still one of the most fun fighting games ever created (especially if you know how to play many characters and teams). There's no story mode, no adventure mode, and really no other extras (besides unlocking characters and stages in the beginning), but who needs 'em... this is a "fighting game" made for fighting game players, and it delivers.



Page Updated: August 17th, 2021
Developer(s): Capcom,  Backbone  (PSN/XBLA versions)
Publisher(s): Capcom
Artwork by: Bengus
Platform(s): Arcade, Dreamcast, PS2, PS3 (PSN), Xbox, Xbox 360 (XBL), iOS
Release Date(s): February 2000                     Arcade
Mar. 30th, 2000                   Dreamcast
June 29th, 2000                   Dreamcast
July 16th, 2000                     Dreamcast
Sept. 19th, 2002                  PS2 / Xbox
Nov. 19th, 2002                   PS2
Nov. 29th, 2002                   PS2 / Xbox
Mar. 30th, 2003                   Xbox
July 29th, 2009                  XBLA
Aug. 13th, 2009                 PSN
Apr. 25th, 2012                  iOS
Characters Ryu, Chun-Li, Guile, Jill Valentine, Charlie, Felicia, B.B. Hood, Akuma, Zangief, Cammy, Servbot, Sakura, Anakaris, Amingo, Son Son, Ruby Heart, Hayato, Tron Bonne, Dhalsim, M. Bison, Ken Masters, Dan Hibiki, Roll, Morrigan, Captain Commando, Mega Man, Strider Hiryu, Spider-Man, Jin Saotome, Cable, Marrow, Captain America, Venom, Hulk, Gambit, War Machine, Wolverine, Omega Red, Rogue, Cyclops, Shuma-Gorath, Sentinel, Iron Man, Juggernaut, Magneto, Psylocke, Iceman, Storm, Dr. Doom, Silver Samurai, Thanos, Sabretooth, Blackheart, Spiral, Colossus, Abyss

Featured Video:

Related Games: X-Men: Children of the Atom, Marvel Super Heroes, X-Men VS Street Fighter, Marvel Super Heroes VS Street Fighter, Marvel VS Capcom, Marvel VS Capcom 3, Ultimate Marvel VS Capcom 3, Marvel VS Capcom: Infinite, Capcom VS SNK, Capcom VS SNK 2, Tatsunoko VS Capcom

Gameplay Engine  9.5 / 10
Story / Theme  8.5 / 10
Overall Graphics  9.0 / 10
Animation  8.5 / 10
Music / Sound Effects  7.5 / 10
Innovation  10 / 10
Art Direction  9.5 / 10
Customization  9.0 / 10
Options / Extras  7.5 / 10
Intro / Presentation  8.0 / 10
Replayability / Fun  10 / 10
"Ouch" Factor  9.5 / 10
Characters  10 / 10

9.5 / 10

 Review based on Dreamcast version    


Final Words:

The culmination of Capcom's highly successful Marvel VS series (which began in 1996), Marvel VS Capcom 2 made a statement in arcades in the year 2000 and remained a relevant fighting game for literally decades to come. On a personal note, I met so many friends playing MVC2 at arcades and tournaments back in the day (including one of my best friends). During its heyday, it was common to see 7 or 8 quarters up on that cabinet at my local arcade. Put up or shut up! Good times with this game... good times indeed.

Very few fighting games come close to MVC2 in terms of fun, gameplay options, and flashiness. I think one of the things I love most about MVC2 is the speed... it's probably the fastest fighting game in existence, especially when compared to many fighting games nowadays. No doubt MVC2 was, and still is one of the most playable and open-ending 2D fighting games for casual players and skilled players alike. For high level players, the tournament scene was a little different, as "cheap" tactics and OP characters are used to dominate. It's part of the magic, but MVC2 is also epic when low-tier characters join the fight.

A lot of people still complain about the game's balance issues, and they're usually not wrong in their complaints... but the fact that such insane combos and teams even exist in one fighting game is what makes MVC2 special. In what other game can you do crazy triangle jump rush-down combos or 20-second corner traps? True, MVC2 is "unbalanced" but I actually think that's what Capcom intended to do in the first place. They wanted us players to have fun with this game (and we did). And don't forget, low-tier characters can be used effectively and are still very fun to use, especially when you can take down top tier teams.

MVC2 made an epic return on PSN & XBLA in Summer of 2009, finally brining along online play. We had to wait nine long years to for online matches, but thankfully it was worth it (mostly). The netcode is fairly solid on both PSN & XBLA, and playing other skilled players across the globe is particularly fun in a game like MVC2. There are many skilled players out there and clever new teams & tactics to test your skills against. For the record, I love playing "low tier" teams online with other skilled players, but I'm always up for mixing it up and going all out with OP "tournament style" teams as well. For the record, my main team is Cable / Juggernaut / Guile.

After over a decade of support for Marvel VS Capcom 2 from loyal players, Capcom brought the series back with Marvel Vs. Capcom 3 in 2011. While the MVC3 series looks great in 3D and implemented new characters and ideas... I have say... I still strongly prefer MVC2 any day of the week. MVC2 at arcades was an experience. As iconic as SF2's original run, and even more successful.

~TFG Webmaster | @Fighters_Gen


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