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Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite (also referred to unofficially as Marvel vs. Capcom 4) is an upcoming fighting game in development by Capcom, planned for release on September 19, 2017 for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows. It is the sixth main entry in the Marvel vs. Capcom series of crossover games, and the ninth overall main entry in Capcom's Vs. series; the player controls characters from both Marvel Comics and Capcom in tag-team battles. Infinite features two-on-two battles, as opposed to its two previous predecessors, which featured three-on-three battles. In addition, the series' traditional character assist feature has been removed, in favor of a free-form, tag-based combo system, which allows players to form continuous combos between their two characters. It also introduces a new gameplay mechanic in the form of the Infinity Stones, which temporarily bestow players with unique abilities and stat boosts depending on the type of stone selected.
Infinite was announced during Sony's PlayStation Experience event in December 2016. Capcom initially lost the use of the Marvel license in 2012, after Marvel's new parent company, the Walt Disney Company, which acquired Marvel in 2009, decided to focus on self-publishing its own gaming titles, such as the Disney Infinity series; however, Capcom was able to reacquire the license after Disney scrapped their plans to continue self-publishing their own titles. Infinite was designed to be more accessible than previous Marvel vs. Capcom games, resulting in departures from some series' mainstays, such as assists. The game will also feature a larger emphasis on storytelling, with its own cinematic story experience. The plot follows the heroes and villains of the Marvel and Capcom universes, who must work together to save their merged worlds against a new threat, Ultron-Sigma.
Like its predecessors, Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite is a fighting game in which players compete against each other in tag-team combat using characters from both the Marvel Comics universe and Capcom's video game franchises. Infinite features two-on-two partner battles, similar to Marvel vs. Capcom: Clash of Super Heroes and earlier installments in the franchise. Unlike past entries, the game does not allow players to use assist attacks from their off-screen characters; instead, Infinite utilizes a "free-form" tag system akin to Marvel vs. Capcom 3's "Team Aerial Combo" system and Street Fighter X Tekken's "Switch Cancel" system. Players can freely tag out their team members at any point, even while mid-air, during long attack animations, or during the middle of combos, allowing them to form continuous combos between their two characters. Alternatively, players can sacrifice meter from their Hyper Combo Gauge to perform the newly introduced "Counter Switch" mechanic, which tags in their partner character while the opponent is attacking them, providing the opportunity to counterattack and free the character trapped in the enemy's combo.
Infinite moves away from the button layout previously used in Marvel vs. Capcom 3, and instead employs a control scheme more similar to Marvel vs. Capcom 2, which includes four attack buttons, consisting of two pairs of light and heavy punches and kicks, and two additional buttons used for swapping characters and activating Infinity Stone powers. To improve accessibility, the game includes an "auto-combo" system, which allows players to repeatedly press the light punch button to automatically perform both ground and air combos. In addition, certain Hyper Combos can now be activated by simply pressing the two heavy attack buttons, as opposed to the specific joystick and button combinations required in previous titles.
Infinite also implements the Infinity Stones as a gameplay mechanic, similar to Marvel Super Heroes, where each stone grants unique abilities. Each player selects one Infinity Stone before the match begins, which bestows one ability that can be activated at any time, known as the "Infinity Surge". For example, the Power Stone produces a knockback effect when used, while the Space Stone pulls an opponent closer to the player character. A second, stronger ability called the "Infinity Storm" can be activated after a player fills their Infinity meter, giving them a significant boost for a limited time, similar to the X-Factor system from Marvel vs. Capcom 3. The boost is determined by the chosen Infinity Stone; for example, the Power Stone increases the user's damage output and combo ability, while the Space Stone traps an opponent in a confined area that severely limits their movement. The game will also include a two-hour cinematic story mode; single-player modes, such as training, mission, and arcade mode; a collection mode, where extras unlocked through the story and arcade modes are stored; and online multiplayer with ranked and casual matches, global leaderboards, and online lobbies with spectating.
As with past installments, Infinite will feature both new and returning heroes and villains in the Marvel vs. Capcom series. Additional characters will also be released post-launch as downloadable content (DLC). Returning characters have received various adjustments from their previous appearances, including new special moves, abilities, and hyper combos. According to Producer Mike Evans and Associate Producer Peter Rosas, the development team examined the strengths and weaknesses of each returning character and adjusted them by providing new moves and abilities, hoping to make every fighter viable. In terms of roster selection, characters were chosen based on two aspects: their potential interactions within the story and their gameplay style. The developers sought to include a variety of different character archetypes, from small, nimble characters, such as Strider Hiryu, to large, brawler-type characters, such as the Hulk. Capcom worked closely with Marvel staff members, who provided feedback to maintain the authenticity of their characters' portrayals.
Producer Mike Evans has stated that the characters on the Marvel side of the roster would not be limited to those who have appeared in the movies of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
New characters to the franchise are listed below in bold.
|Marvel characters||Capcom characters||Original characters|
Believing all biological life must be purged, Ultron and Sigma forge an alliance. Using the power of two of the Infinity Stones, the two fuse themselves into a single being, "Ultron-Sigma", and merge the worlds of Marvel and Capcom into a single dimension, which they seek to rule by unleashing a cybernetic virus that puts others under their control. As a result, the heroes and villains of both worlds must band together to retrieve the remaining four Infinity Stones and defeat Ultron-Sigma's forces. 
Following the release of Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 for the PlayStation Vita in 2012, Marvel's new parent company, the Walt Disney Company, which acquired Marvel in 2009, chose not to renew their licensing deal with Capcom, instead opting to move its viable properties towards their self-published game titles, such as the Disney Infinity series; this resulted in Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 and Marvel vs. Capcom 2: New Age of Heroes being removed from the Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network in 2013. However, in May 2016, Disney announced its decision to discontinue self-publishing efforts and switch over to a licensing-only model, allowing Capcom to renegotiate its license with Marvel. On December 3, 2016, Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite was officially unveiled during Sony's PlayStation Experience event; its first gameplay footage debuted on the same day following the conclusion of Capcom Cup 2016. Norio Hirose, a programmer who had previously worked on X-Men vs. Street Fighter, Marvel Super Heroes vs. Street Fighter, and Marvel vs. Capcom: Clash of Super Heroes, as well as other Capcom fighting games, such as Capcom vs. SNK: Millennium Fight 2000, serves as Infinite's director.
According to Mike Jones, Executive Producer at Marvel Games, Infinite was designed to be a "more elegant and simplified" game which remained as "complex and hardcore" as past Marvel vs. Capcom installments. The decision to change the three-on-three battle system used in the series' previous iteration was considered for a long time before ultimately settling on two-on-two fights for the sake of accessibility. Capcom's Director of Production, Michael Evans, wished to give casual Marvel vs. Capcom fans the ability to get into the game without being overwhelmed by introducing a more manageable two-character system. To offset the streamlined character select system as well as a removal of call-in assist attacks, the six Infinity Stones were implemented to provide teams with additional customization options and increase gameplay depth. The Infinity Stones also replace the "X-Factor" game mechanic from Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds, in order to allow for a greater number of options and a greater degree of customization. Marvel and Capcom compared the Infinity Stones to the "Groove System" used in Capcom vs. SNK 2. The primary goal with the Infinity Stones was to create a level playing field by acting as a comeback enabler, and allowing players to compensate for their characters' deficiencies and enhance their strong points. According to the game developers, the inclusion of the Infinity Stones and the theme of "infinite [gameplay] possibilities" influenced their decision to use Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite as the game's title, rather than Marvel vs. Capcom 4. To further differentiate Infinite, the developers opted to use the Unreal Engine 4 to develop more cinematic and modern visuals, as opposed to the stylized art direction used in Marvel vs. Capcom 3.
Beyond appealing to genre and series fans, Capcom sought to target a diverse audience with Infinite and bring in casual players who were fans of Marvel's movies, comic books, and television shows. To this end, the developers wanted to introduce a more robust, cinematic story compared to previous Marvel vs. Capcom titles. Bill Rosemann, Creative Director at Marvel Games, stated that Infinite's emphasis on storytelling was largely influenced by Marvel's story and character-centric approach to their recent projects in games, film, and television; Rosemann and Jones cited Insomniac Games' upcoming Spider-Man video game, Telltale Games' future Guardians of the Galaxy title, and Marvel's successful Netflix series as examples. Capcom also promised a larger variety of offline single-player and multiplayer content at launch. The promise for a "feature-rich" product appears to have resulted from experiences with Street Fighter V, which was criticized for its lack of content upon release. Frank Tieri, the lead writer for Marvel vs. Capcom 3, has also confirmed his involvement with Infinite.
Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite is scheduled for release on September 19, 2017 for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows.  The game will be available in three editions: a standard edition, which features two pre-order costumes for Ryu and Thor; a Deluxe Edition, which features four pre-order costumes for Ryu, Thor, Hulk, and Mega Man X, as well as a season pass granting access to six DLC fighters; and a Collector's Edition, which includes the Deluxe Edition of the game, in addition to four character dioramas of Iron Man, Captain Marvel, Mega Man X, and Chun-Li by TriForce, and a case filled with six LED-powered Infinity Stone replicas.
Related media and merchandise
In February 2017, Hasbro announced a Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite toy line during their presentation at the American International Toy Fair. In May 2017, Marvel Comics announced a series of Marvel vs. Capcom-themed comic book variant covers, which will be available in comic stores throughout August.
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- First teaser for Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite featuring Iron Man, Captain Marvel, Mega Man X, and Ryu
- First extended gameplay trailer for Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite introducing Captain America and Morrigan
- First story trailer for Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite introducing Hawkeye, Hulk, Rocket Raccoon, Thor, Ultron, Chris Redfield, Chun-Li, Sigma, and Strider Hiryu
- Second gameplay trailer for Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite showing Chun-Li, Hulk, Strider Hiryu, Thor, Hawkeye, Chris Redfield, and Ultron in action
- Second story trailer for Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite introducing Arthur, Black Panther, Dante, Doctor Strange, Gamora, Nathan "Rad" Spencer, Nova, Thanos, and Zero
- Third gameplay trailer for Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite showing Rocket Raccoon, Dante, Arthur, Doctor Strange, Nathan "Rad" Spencer, Nova, Zero, and Thanos in action
- Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite gameplay introduction breakdown video featuring Associate Producer Peter Rosas explaining the controls of the game
- Fourth gameplay trailer for Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite introducing Haggar, Nemesis, Frank West, Spider-Man, and Gamora
- ↑ "『MARVEL VS. CAPCOM: INFINITE』はパートナーとの共闘感を重視、シリーズの根幹に迫るストーリーモードの実装も！". (Japanese) Famitsu. Enterbrain (2016-12-05). Retrieved on 2017-01-06.
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Walker, Ian (April 27, 2017). "Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite Wants Even Newbies To Have a Blast". Kotaku. Retrieved on April 27, 2017.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Crisan, Neidel (December 3, 2016). "Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite Hits PS4 in 2017 — 2v2 Battles, Infinity Stones, More". PlayStation Blog. Retrieved on December 3, 2016.
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 "Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite – Release date and roster updates". Electronic Gaming Monthly (December 26, 2016). Retrieved on January 9, 2017.
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 5.8 5.9 Vazquez, Suriel (December 3, 2016). "Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite - Two-On-Two Fights Are Made More Chaotic By Infinity Stones". Game Informer. Retrieved on December 4, 2016.
- ↑ Huskey, Darry (April 27, 2017). "Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite First Hands-On: Feeling the Influence of the MCU". IGN. Retrieved on April 28, 2017.
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Yin-Poole, Wesley (April 27, 2017). "Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite makes big changes in the name of accessibility". Eurogamer. Retrieved on April 27, 2017.
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 Vazquez, Suriel (April 27, 2017). "Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite - 50 Details We Learned During Our Hands-On Time". Game Informer. Retrieved on April 27, 2017.
- ↑ Figueroa, Sergio (April 27, 2017). "Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite - Hands-On Impressions". Gamereactor. Retrieved on April 28, 2017.
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 Hussain, Tamoor (April 25, 2017). "Marvel Vs. Capcom: Infinite Release Date And New Characters Revealed". GameSpot. Retrieved on April 25, 2017.
- ↑ 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 Donaldson, Alex (May 4, 2017). "Inside Marvel vs Capcom Infinite: an in-depth interview about accessibility, combos, ditching cross-platform play and sweat equity". VG247. Retrieved on May 4, 2017.
- ↑ Morse, Ben (April 25, 2017). "'Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite' Smashes Back With New Details". Marvel Comics. Retrieved on April 25, 2017.
- ↑ Nieves, David (2016-11-28). "There’s a growing rumor about a new Marvel vs. Capcom game in 2017". The Beat. The Beat.
- ↑ Karmali, Luke (2014-01-02). "MARVEL TITLES NO LONGER AVAILABLE DIGITALLY". IGN. Ziff Davis. Retrieved on 2017-01-08.
- ↑ Macy, Seth G. (2016-05-10). "DISNEY CANCELS INFINITY, NO LONGER SELF-PUBLISHING GAMES". IGN. Ziff Davis. Retrieved on 2017-01-08.
- ↑ Clark, Willie (2016-08-18). "DISNEY'S MANY, MANY ATTEMPTS AT FIGURING OUT THE GAME INDUSTRY". Polygon. Vox Media.
- ↑ Goldfarb, Andrew (2016-12-03). "PSX 2016: MARVEL VS. CAPCOM INFINITE ANNOUNCED". IGN. Ziff Davis. Retrieved on 2016-12-04.
- ↑ McWhertor, Michael (2016-12-04). "Here’s an extended look at Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite gameplay". Polygon. Vox Media.
- ↑ "『MARVEL VS. CAPCOM: INFINITE』はパートナーとの共闘感を重視、シリーズの根幹に迫るストーリーモードの実装も！". (Japanese) Famitsu (December 5, 2016). Retrieved on January 6, 2017.
- ↑ Kazama, Virtua (April 16, 2017). "Fighting games and DLC to look forward to in 2017". Destructoid. Retrieved on April 17, 2017.
- ↑ 21.0 21.1 21.2 Makuch, Eddie (2016-12-05). "Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite Devs Respond to "Accessibility" Concerns". GameSpot. CBS Interactive. Retrieved on 2017-01-08.
- ↑ 22.0 22.1 Krupa, Daniel (2016-12-09). "MARVEL VS. CAPCOM: INFINITE WANTS TO BE APPROACHABLE YET COMPLEX". IGN. Ziff Davis. Retrieved on 2017-01-08.
- ↑ Sato (December 7, 2016). "Mega Man X’s Popularity In The West Got Him Into Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite’s First Trailer". Siliconera. Curse, Inc.. Retrieved on April 18, 2017.
- ↑ 24.0 24.1 24.2 Tsujimoto, Haruhiro (2016-12-05). "MARVEL VS. CAPCOM: INFINITE Announced!". Capcom. Capcom.
- ↑ Tieri, Frank (2017-12-03). "And for those who are asking, yes I worked on #MVCI...". Twitter.
- ↑ Hussain, Tamoor (2016-12-03). "Marvel Vs. Capcom Infinite Officially Announced". GameSpot. CBS Interactive.
- ↑ Romano, Sal (April 25, 2017). "Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite launches September 19; story trailer and new characters announced". Gematsu. Retrieved on April 25, 2017.
- ↑ Co, Franz (February 27, 2017). "Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite Toy Line Mentioned at Hasbro’s Toy Fair 2017 Presentation". Shoryuken. Retrieved on May 17, 2017.
- ↑ "MARVEL vs. CAPCOM: INFINITE Gets Marvel Comics Variant Covers". Newsarama (May 17, 2017). Retrieved on May 17, 2017.
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