Future Capcom Fighters May Focus On Singleplayer Content

Future Capcom Fighters May Focus On Singleplayer Content

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For the past two decades, Capcom has been the king of the fighting game world, but its titles have never featured engrossing stories. That may be changing in the near future.

In a new post to the Capcom Unity forums, Capcom senior vice president Christian Svensson reveals a call from the company's marketing wing for more focus on singleplayer content in the firm's traditionally multiplayer-focused fighting games. "The strategic marketing group here has for quite a while been pushing for our fighting franchises to have more and better single player content, of which full fledged story modes are one component," Svensson writes.

"How and when those requirements manifest in our future roadmap, I'm not prepared to speak about at this time."

So while the Capcom status quo may not change immediately, it is something that's in the works, and with good reason. While Street Fighter 2 (and its innumerable off-shoots) could get away with two or three screens of end-game story content for each character, modern fighters have come a long way in their ability to tell a cohesive story. Granted, rarely are these stories of any quality, but at least they exist.

NetherRealm Studios' efforts are a great example of this. 2011's Mortal Kombat featured an hours-long story mode comprised of cinematics which retold the story of the first three Mortal Kombat tournaments. This story mode was pocked with fights which tied into the ongoing story, cleverly combining the game's core gameplay with its ability to weave a cohesive narrative.

NetherRealm's next project, Injustice: Gods Among Us features an even more fleshed-out storyline, complemented by a surprisingly not terrible DC Comics-published comic book.

By contrast, Capcom's most recent high-profile fighters are still relying on minor, post-battle screens (most of which are static or barely-animated illustrations overlaid by short text blurbs) to fill in the backstory for each of their characters. Despite having years of interesting (if confusing) lore to delve into, it's always felt as if Capcom focuses primarily on multiplayer fisticuffs and only throws in singleplayer stuff as an afterthought. Here's hoping the call from Capcom's marketing wing leads to more full-featured fighters in the near future.

Source: Capcom Unity

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See, now if SNK took NetherRealm's approach, they'd be Kings. But noooo.

Anyway, it's good that Capcom is refocusing its... focus on singleplayer content. Especially considering it's fighting games we're talking about. This is all kinds of impressive. :o

Good on 'em.

I'll hold the applause for until I see the result.

Well why shouldnt Capcom focus on developing the multiplayer? Multiplayer has been the very life-blood of the fighting game genre even before Street Fighter 2 defined it.

Dear Capcom,

There are other genres besides fighters.

Sincerely,
The rest of the gaming community

PS: No one plays fighters for the story.

RaikuFA:
Dear Capcom,

There are other genres besides fighters.

Sincerely,
The rest of the gaming community

PS: No one plays fighters for the story.

Listen to this man Capcom!
The guy with the Regular Show avatar knows something about appealing to audiences without a story :P

I don't know. If this means we get storylines as long and awesome as BlazBlue's, I could actually get behind this.

RaikuFA:
Dear Capcom,

There are other genres besides fighters.

Sincerely,
The rest of the gaming community

PS: No one plays fighters for the story.

Im always one to say the story Is more important than MP I think Its Vice versa for fighters

Story in a fighting game... that is where they will be throwing their money here... I would understand if the rest of the games were perfect and there simply was no room for improvement other then improve those unimportant things like story but that is not the case so I really must ask if they know anything about their fanbase to decide that this was the way to go.

Its funny that in other games where single player should be the focus they completely ignore it and go after some excuse to add multiplayer (Ninja Gaiden 3 for example). Its like everyone just decided to troll gamers for the shits and giggles.

mParadox:

Anyway, it's good that Capcom is refocusing its... focus on singleplayer content. Especially considering it's fighting games we're talking about. This is all kinds of impressive. :o

Story in fighting games is like plot in porn. You sort of expect it to be there but nobody actually cares about it.

*Says fighting games with good stories exist, quotes MK9 over BlazBlue*

Seems legit.

Well if Capcom got at least SOME single player content in their fighters that would be grand. You seen UMVC3's singleplayer? It has between "fuck" and "all." Even the training mode is bare bones as fuck.

You know annoying it is for me, the sole Phoenix Wright player to have to stop practicing my Turnabout combos and grind for evidence again because the 20 second time limit is still in place for fuck all reason. You need to wait for X-Factor to run out if you want to test new X-Factor cancels and ugh, everything is so unpolished.

As unlikely as it is (really, REALLY unlikely) that a story from a Capcom fighter could match up to BlazBlue, I would like to see them at least try... Hey just some new game modes for single player would be good enough. Anything would be better than UMVC3 that's for sure.

Story is merely "content" in a fighting game...

I look at Mortal Kombat 9 and I see a game with SO much content. A 6 hour story mode, hundreds of challenges in the Challenge Tower, unique endings for every character in the game in Arcade mode, hundreds of music, stages, characters, costumes, and concept art to unlock in the Krypt, robust multiplayer modes with lots of unique quirks, frequent free DLC and actual DLC characters later on... all that on top of a very, very solid, highly enjoyable fighting game in and of itself.

And then I compare that to the absolutely anemic offering that was Marvel vs Capcom 3 and how barebones everything was. Almost no content. Or then Soul Calibur V comes out and it has ZERO story for almost the entire roster.

I guess the thing is, for the hardcore of the hardcore, no, you don't need a story. But for the rest of us, both casual and even hardcore players, it is highly appreciated knowing who these colorful characters are and why I should care about fighting with them.

Mortal Kombat's story mode made me enjoy playing as characters I never liked before, such as Jax, Stryker, Johnny Cage, and Cyrax. It opened up the doors for me to sample them, then to care about them, and then to care about using them and enjoying my time doing so.

I'm all for more single-player content. I'm just not sure Capcom knows what "content" actually is anymore (hint: it's not stuff you lock on a disc and ask more money for).

I like stories in fighting games, but as far as Capcom properties are concerned i really do just want a new or online enabled Power Stone.

Hey Capcom, that's good and all but I got to ask, where is my Dead Rising 3?

I feel like a lot of people here are missing the point somewhat. Any kind of game has the potential to tell a good story. The fact that the fighting game genre has yet to provide any true, groundbreaking standouts doesn't mean that it is incompatible with storytelling and the developers of such games shouldn't consider it an aspect of the game worth their efforts. As games like Metroid Prime, Limbo, or Dark Souls have taught us, an in-depth plot isn't even strictly necessary; atmosphere and a host of other less readily quantifiable factors can lend a game an emotional resonance that will stick in a player's mind long after they've forgotten about every plot twist and line of dialogue in all the meticulously crafted cinematics of a game like Black Ops II. Being someone who is fairly unenthused with the gameplay experiences provided by the genre, I would love to see an influx of fighting games with a strong commitment to good storytelling. In the past, I've been more than happy to purchase games where the actual "game" part was mediocre (The Walking Dead) or even a bit subpar (Spec Ops: The Line) because the strength of their narrative offerings easily offset their weaknesses. If it's commonly accepted that games with stories that range anywhere between nonexistent or outright bad can still be great thanks to their gameplay, the only thing holding back the inverse view is a continuing perception of games not as art, but as cheap playthings. A game has only ever been improved by a well-told story.

All of that said, it's generally advisable to stick to your strengths, and this is Capcom we're talking about. A sincere question: Have they ever actually managed a good game story that wasn't an indulgence in self-parody (namely, Resident Evil 4)?

that'd be fine by me, but it'd be best to do it for a new IP, or one that can reasonably have a new plotline. Like maybe a Street Fighter taking place after 3, a new Darkstalkers, or just something new entirely. So far the only fighting game that's had a plot that got me invested was Blazblue which had an interesting array of characters I ended up liking.

Kopikatsu:

mParadox:

Anyway, it's good that Capcom is refocusing its... focus on singleplayer content. Especially considering it's fighting games we're talking about. This is all kinds of impressive. :o

Story in fighting games is like plot in porn. You sort of expect it to be there but it's not the draw.

*thinks a bit...

mind blown

zomg, dat apt analogy..

John Carmack said it first.

For the past two decades, Capcom has been the king of the fighting game world

Must have been a very small world these last 6 years. Sorry, Fighting games are nearly extinct now, I know because I am always looking for them. They they give us is street fighter rehashes and HD remakes-NO, not even that... their HD remakes are just sprites put through a Photoshop filter.

Fighting games aren't missing engrossing stories, they are just missing. There was a time when Battle Area Toshiden, Bloody Roar, Guilty gear X, Star Gladiator, Red Earth, Jojo's Bizarre Adventure, Primal Rage, Killer Instinct, Darkstalkers, etc. where all out and competing at once. When you look on most game shelves at gamestop, we now have Street Fighter and Soul Calibur franchises that have both seen better days... MUCH better, and you're lucky to see anything else in the genre. The only worthwhile things I've plays in the last few years was Skullgirls and Blazblue. This gen should have had 10x more fighters then that.

Capcom, we want something new, or at least something more fun like all those other wacky fighters you used to make. But I understand that would require actual work as it doesn't involve posing a 3D model you've used to the point of rape or filtering sprites already made.

Decent stories do exist in fighting games. BlazBlue has a good one. Dead or Alive does as well. Hell, the ending movie of DoA4 which wrapped all the stories together was nothing short of amazing, and is one of the best endings in video games for me.

Street Fighter 4 had a story that was interesting, but it never got fleshed out properly in game. Juri's story especially was terrific if you watched the anime that went with it.

xPixelatedx:

For the past two decades, Capcom has been the king of the fighting game world

Must have been a very small world these last 6 years. Sorry, Fighting games are nearly extinct now, I know because I am always looking for them.

BlazBlue
Dead or Alive
Tekken Tag
Street Fighter 4
Street Fighter x Tekken
Mortal Kombat 9
Skullgirls
Guilty Gear RELOAD
Marvel vs. Capcom 3
King of Fighters XIII
Soul Calibur V

Where were you looking?

NameIsRobertPaulson:

Where were you looking?

I was still typing when I accidentally loaded it, I acknowledged Skullgirls and Blazblue at least. I consider the rest a rather dry list, particularly when compared to what we used to have and what Capcom themselves used to produce.

xPixelatedx:
Sorry, Fighting games are nearly extinct now, I know because I am always looking for them.

On the internet, i can find out precisely how to disassemble someones fingerbones while leaving the rest of thier hand intact, and you cant find anything relating to a genre that mostly consists of long established franchises.

Either you arent trying very hard or you just suck at using a search engine.

xPixelatedx:
I consider the rest a rather dry list, particularly when compared to what we used to have and what Capcom themselves used to produce.

Heres something fresh then.

Street Fighter 4 basically revived the entire genre. Maybe before 2009 I could agree that fighting games were dying but as of now fighting games are doing great compared to what they used to sell.

People seem to be thinking that Capcom is now going to just ignore multiplayer development and focus on Story Mode, that ain't gonna happen. Chances are the most that will change is that we'll get cutscenes at the end of a play-through and some dialogue between specific characters before a fight, similar to what the Tekken series did (I'm thinking specifically of Dark Resurrection since that's where it was done best). I'm all for that, it was fun and broke up the fights for a couple seconds and gave me a cool cinematic for my time, most of which were quite humorous and enjoyable.
And heck, more content is always welcome, chances are it'll get more people involved with these games and breath some life into what has become a very stale genre.

Also, everyone appears to be forgetting that there are already stories written for these characters which have shown some promise, we've had three or four animated movies so far (not that great, but hey). Someone bought those, so clearly someone wouldn't mind getting their teeth into some Street Fighter narrative, I say give it to them.

 

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