Title  : Capcom vs. Everyone Else
Platforms  : Coin-op
Publisher  : Capcom
ESRB Rating  : 'E' for 'Everyone Else'
Game Rating  : pi2
Review by  : Ken Gagne

First there were the X-Men. Then, Marvel Super Heroes, and eventually, Marvel in its entirety. Later, SNK joined the fray. Now, countless sequels later, comes Capcom's fighter to end all fighters: Capcom vs. Everyone Else. 

Ever since the original Street Fighter II, the gaming market has been swamped with fighting clones, many of them poor imitations. Still, the number of good fighters out there is overwhelming. Finally, here are all your favorite fighters, consolidated into a single title: Ken, Akuma, Megaman, Strider, Demitri, Felicia, Spider-Man, Wolverine, King, Nina, Sarah, Wolf, Sub-Zero, Rayden, Galford, Joe Higashi, and more. 

But the list doesn't end with these known fighters. Capcom has cast a net across time and space, bringing together some of the best-known figures ever: 

Mario and Sonic, Alien and Predator, Terminator and Robocop, Batman and Superman, Picard and Kirk, Elminster and Raistlin, Darth Vader and Seven of Nine, Gandalf and Merlin, Bahamut and Tiamat, Splinter and Shredder, Bond and Phelps, Trebek and Sajak, McGwire and Sosa, Shaq and Jordan, Kerrigan and Harding, Leno and Letterman, Cronkite and Brokaw, and Windows and Macintosh. 

As if that wasn't enough ground to break, Capcom has revolutionized the fighting world, much as Virtua Fighter did by raising the level from 2D to 3D. That's right: Capcom vs. Everyone Else is a 4D game. 

Not only must you contend with fighting your opponent (or opponents, using the Tag Team/Battle Royal modes) in a fully 3D arena, the element of time must also be considered. By grabbing Chronogems, contestants may travel freely to any point in time, undoing past damage, evolving into higher forms, or even pulling into the present multiple instances of oneself, separated by nanoseconds, for a powerful team-up. Heck — by the time the game's over, your opponent may never have existed! 

One would think that all this could be pulled off only at the detriment to other aspects of the game. Not so! The graphics, running on the new Banvooami32fx arcade board, can project as many as five billion polygons/second and animate half as many sprites. Even at the upper bounds of the hardware's limit, there's no slowdown. 

Perhaps the game's most amazing feature is its absolute simplicity. To appeal to a wider market, the developers have made Capcom vs. Everyone Else's fighting system the simplest yet. Gone are the combos, chains, power moves, blocks, counters, alphas, and other complicated strategies of yesteryear. Besides the joystick, a single button comprises the control, automatically corresponding to the appropriate move for any given situation. What could be better? 

It takes a strong company to break the mold of repetitive, relentless sequels, and Capcom is just the company to do it. With this all-in-one package and innovative innovations, gamers can finally forget the competition and get back to what it's all about: gaming.


This article is copyright (c) 1999, 2007 by Ken Gagne. All rights reserved. Not to be distributed without permission.

Original publication: Tech News, 01-Apr-99