Originally released for arcades, Tatsunoko vs. Capcom is a revival of Capcom’s Vs. series pitting icons from Tatsunoko against Capcom’s collection of original characters. Like Marvel vs. Capcom before it, Tatsunoko vs. Capcom has tag team battles with two characters on each side. Or one giant character, Gold Lightan or PTX-40A a vital suit from Lost Planet, against say Viewtiful Joe and Ken the Eagle. Add hyper combos where a Roll mop rush deals billions of damage and you have one over the top game…
… with a deep fighting system. Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars has a ton of techniques to learn. Some are easy like when and when not to call in your partner character for an assist attack. Mega Crash timing and Baroque combos, which consume recoverable life in exchange for extended combos, are trickier. There’s a lot in Tatsunoko vs. Capcom for veteran fighters to master even if they know how to do a cross-over counters. On the other hand, Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars is easy to pick up even if you don’t know what QCF+P" means. Capcom created an “easy operation” style control scheme which changes motions like half circle back to back + special attack button. The simplified input system has its share of disadvantages: characters are less versatile, they only have a dial a combo, and you can’t control the degree of force (light/medium/strong). It’s not perfect, but the Wii remote only setup allows newcomers to jump into Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars right away.
All of that was in Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Cross Generation of Heroes already. Online play is brand new for the international release. Eighting, the developer, also made the online enabled Naruto Shippuden: Clash of Ninja Revolution 3, which has a set of features comparable to Tatsunoko vs. Capcom. You don’t need to register friends to fight. Once you’re ready for battle a matchmaker will find you an opponent based on the amount of battle points you earned. After each ranked round, one player is awarded a battle point boost and maybe a title promotion from rookie to ultra rookie. Then you can choose to accept a rematch or if your opponent rejects you can attempt to register them as a rival. Both players need to accept the rival invitation. This system allows players to keep track of randomly met online opponents without resorting to friend codes. If you want to battle a friend you know, you still need to punch in numbers.
Theoretically, someone in Denmark can fight someone in Osaka since Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars supports worldwide online play. I can’t say how well this works, though. I have my game set to “worldwide”, but since Ultimate All-Stars isn’t readily available I’m not sure if I fought anyone outside of the States. So far, almost all of my fights have been lag free. Only one match out of thirty (ranked + free) felt choppy. That’s a pretty good ratio. If you’re worried about lag from afar you can set Tatsunoko vs. Capcom to only search for nearby opponents.
There are some other neat-o online features Eighting added like the style badge. As you play online, you might earn a fire, ice, or lightning badge. These let random opponents know you like to use hyper combos, turtle in a corner, or are an evasive player, respectively. Players also pick characters blindly, unlike Marvel vs. Capcom 2 where you can wait to see if your opponent picks Cable. While you’re waiting for a match help windows explain the badge system and warns players about disconnects. A pop up window says, “repeated disconnects will prevent you from playing online.” Sounds like Capcom is trying to do something to combat players that disconnect to avoid recording a loss on their record.
This isn’t “analysis”, but in most of my matches players picked teams of two Cacpom characters. I rarely went up against Tatsunoko characters. Perhaps, players aren’t comfortable with them yet? On the other hand, I fought against the shopping cart throwing, zombie calling Frank West with three different players. Zero, Yatterman-2, Joe the Condor, and Tekkaman Blade are the newcomers exclusive to Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars. You have to unlock all of these guys. Locked characters in Cross Generation of Heroes like Viewtiful Joe and Saki are available from the beginning. Players can also collect character profiles, art, and movies by purchasing them at the store with Zenny also earned from arcade mode.
While Capcom added a lot to Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars there are features they took out. Hakushon Daimaou, the chunky genie on the Tatsunoko side, and character specific background music are out due to licensing issues. The original animated endings from Tatsunoko productions are gone too and replaced by brand new endings done by Udon. These are in the spirit of the original with obscure references to Capcom games. Remember Hauzer from Red Earth? The only thing unusual about the endings is seeing the Tatsunoko cast drawn in a different style. Capcom made a ton of mini-games for Cross Generation of Heroes and only one made the cut. Tatsunoko vs. Capcom All Shooters is really an upgraded version of PTX-40A’s game. You really aren’t missing much (although, the fireball throwing game with Ryu was worth a few laughs), but it strange to see these finished items were excluded.
The loss of math mini-games and revised endings don’t detract from what Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars really is, and that’s a fantastic fighting game for the Wii.