For the last decade, Capcom has been the home for all things Marvel related -- at least as far as fighting games go. That is, until EA got a hold of the rights. The first game out of this collaboration is Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects, a fighting game that pits some of Marvel's greatest heroes up against a new set created just for the game.
Of the twelve or so characters that will be available in the final game, only five have been revealed so far. Spider-man, Iron Man and Wolverine will make appearances off the Marvel list and are joined by two new characters, Johnny Ohm and Brigade. Expect the Marvel characters to feature their signature powers, like Wolverine's claws and healing factor and Spidey's webs and acrobatics. EA is attempting to make sure that all of the known characters' powers find their way into the game in some form or another. The new characters will all have their own special powers, though they won't be as "perfect" as the Marvel heroes? powers (thus the "Imperfects" moniker). As indicated by his living power-plant look, Johnny Ohm?s powers will revolve around manipulating electricity while Brigade is essentially a walking tank. The specifics of each character, including their background stories, haven't been released yet, but both EA and Marvel have something special in mind to introduce the new faces.
Shortly before the game's release, Marvel will release a series of comics called (surprise, surprise) ?Rise of the Imperfects?. Through the books, the new character's origins, powers and motivations will be revealed. The series will also include the Marvel characters making an appearance in the game, letting fans know just how they get tangled up into this whole mess.
From a gameplay standpoint, Nemesis is very reminiscent of Powerstone. Fights take place on large areas littered with obstacles. Nearly everything in the area can be picked up, provided that your chosen character is strong enough to pick it up. In the demo, which took place atop the Daily Bugle building, everything from A/C units to oil drums could be thrown around with explosive results. In addition, parts of the arena can be destroyed, such as the giant Daily Bugle letters.
One of EA's core aims with Nemesis is to make the game more accessible to players who may find the complex button presses and combos of most fighting games daunting. In order to meet this goal, they're introducing a universal control scheme that will work for all characters. The basic rundown is very simple, in addition to the already mentioned option to pick up objects in the environment, you can also pull off special moves by pressing the two special powers buttons; mobility and mutant. Mobility powers allow you to dodge out of the way of oncoming attacks quickly -- such as shooting a zip line with Spidey. Mutant powers are offensive powers, like using Wolverine's claws to tear into opponents.
Marvel Nemesis is still in development, so there are obviously a few problems that need to be worked out. Based on what they've shown so far, the team is headed in the right direction, which bodes well for the final game.