I feel like I’m writing about a leak here almost once a week at this point. From t-shirts and marketing materials to insiders and botched social media posts, keeping secrets in AAA is a concept that doesn’t exist anymore. Normally these things just come up as news posts, but this time around, I have Big Opinions. I’m talking about Marvel vs Capcom: Infinite and a series of leaks building up a ton of heat for what may end up being another troubled Capcom release.
First, the obvious caveat: while leaks are increasingly common, believable and accurate, they’re still leaks. Just like anything else, they’re impossible to take without some degree of skepticism. We won’t know for sure if any of this stuff is 100% true until the game is out. That said, this information is coming from people who have histories with this stuff, and they generally seem to be backing each other up. That’s important here; especially with things as complicated as crossover fighting game rosters. Not that, you know, those things are that common, really.
A few days ago, a known Marvel vs Capcom leaker revealed most of the launch roster. And… it was a bit on the underwhelming side. Both sides were full of characters we’ve already seen before or characters that, as part of a big roster, don’t stand out so much. Not only that, but many of the characters who could’ve returned with a better reception, characters considered keystones of Marvel vs Capcom history, were nowhere to be seen. Characters like Wolverine, Doctor Doom, and more were missing from the Marvel side, and aside from the few surprises and odd returns, the Capcom side seemed to lose more than it gained.
So what gives? Well, the answer appears to be… DLC. Capcom is no stranger to DLC, famously coming under a ton of heat for Street Fighter x Tekken, which had tons of character DLC, much of which was already on the disc when the game launched. Street Fighter V has also had a ton of DLC, and was also controversial due to its small initial roster and bare-bones launch. Capcom has since used Street Fighter V as a platform to introduce new characters and added things like an involved story mode, but rushing the game out with mostly just a core intact in order to get it out in time for competitions may have been costly.
Now, if these leaks are to be believed, Capcom appears to be hiding a ton of new and interesting characters behind multiple scheduled paywalls. Characters like Sigma, Black Panther, Wolverine, and several from Darkstalkers and Street Fighter are being held back for additional purchase. Meanwhile, Marvel (movie related) politics and Capcom doing things like possibly promoting a new Ghosts n Goblins and playing it pretty safe with a couple exceptions makes the launch roster seem… stunted. In terms of public perception, with such a bizarre lack of fan-favorites (although props for additions like Mega Man X, and ostensibly Jedah and a new character based on Monster Hunter are deserved), this could be a problem.
Ultimately, you can’t please everyone. Especially in a game tied up so much in, as one Reddit leaker says, “scummy corporate bull$@#7,” everyone’s going to have some problems with the final list. Assuming this leak is true, there is plenty to like on the launch roster. Debuting characters like Captain Marvel and Sigma are exciting, and souped-up versions of Thor and company from Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 will hopefully shake up the playerbase. But the stench of DLC might hang over Marvel vs Capcom: Infinite far more heavily than Capcom may be expecting. If the release windows or prices aren’t right, there may be a long trail of salt ahead of us.