In recent months, Capcom’s treatment of Mega Man has been fairly questionable. With a lot of people beginning to speculate as to why Capcom is giving the Blue Bomber a bit of a shafting, I decided to throw in my two cents and look at all of the things that have happened lately that seem to support the idea of Mega Man being sidelined by Capcom.
Late in 2010 when most of Marvel vs Capcom 3’s roster had become known, there was no sign of Mega Man. Most fans just assumed that they were saving them for their final reveals since it would make sense for the last reveal to be such a major Capcom character. When January 2011 rolled around and Capcom showed off the final characters, none of them were Mega Man. The Blue Bomber had been present in the previous two Marvel vs Capcom titles, but was now completely absent despite Tron Bonne and Zero being in. Many continued to hold out hope, believing that Mega Man would be in as a DLC character after Jill Valentine. DLC Mega Man never came.
So, how come Mega Man never appeared? Producer Ryota Niitsuma stated that it was because Mega Man simply lacked having enough potential to have a solid moveset. So, apparently a robot that can shoot and dash, as well as absorb dozens of powers from his enemies, is not unique enough and cannot possibly have a moveset developed for them? Interesting point, and many fans would disagree. Remember this tidbit, because it will come back a little later on and strike with a vengeance.
On March 31 2011, Capcom cancelled Mega Man Universe. Their explanation? “Various circumstances.” Various circumstances, they say? What are those circumstances, Capcom? They never really elaborated further for us. The definite reason for Mega Man Universe’s cancellation, to this day, remains a complete mystery.
Several websites began to run DLC request polls for Marvel vs Capcom 3 between March and June 2011, which Capcom stated they would “take into consideration” despite the polls not being officially endorsed by the company. Mega Man X ended up being the most universally demanded character, garnering more votes overall than any other character. Producer Ryota Niitsuma went off the record and stated that he’d love to include two popular fan demanded characters down the road, Mega Man X and Phoenix Wright. Many fans automatically assumed that this meant we would eventually get Mega Man X and Phoenix Wright as DLC, but then the famous leaker Lupinko began whispering of an upgraded version of Marvel vs Capcom 3 being in the works. People now firmly believed that Capcom was playing it smart and saving Mega Man for the upgraded version.
Fast forward a few months, and tons of “Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3” rumours were wildly flying everywhere on the internet. Meanwhile, it was now July 18, and Capcom decided that it was indeed time to throw out some Mega Man news. So, what did they give to the world? The cancellation of the highly anticipated 3DS game Mega Man Legends 3. The backlash from this move was absolutely shocking, as thousands of enraged Mega Man fans began to spam Capcom’s websites as well as just about any gaming related forums that would listen. As the San Diego Comic-Con 2011 began to kick off, angry fans began protesting against Capcom by spamming every internet feed they had covering the event.
Capcom’s reason for cancelling Mega Man Legends 3 was at least a little more detailed than their reason for canning Mega Man Universe. Here is what they said.
We’d like to thank you for your ongoing loyal support of Mega Man Legends 3. Today, however, we must regrettably announce the discontinuation of this project.
From the outset the MML3 Project was intended to give gamers across the world insight and input into the development process. Part of this process includes an assessment of whether the title will go into full production, and is based on a number of criteria with input from different sectors of the company.
Unfortunately it was not felt that the Mega Man Legends 3 Project met the required criteria, and it is with regret that we must announce that the Mega Man Legends 3 Project has been cancelled, meaning that Capcom will not be releasing the Prototype or the full game. Additionally, updates of the Mega Man Legends Developer Room will cease as of today, though the North American Developer Room and its forums will remain open indefinitely.
We can only express our deepest apologies to all of you who have lent us your unending support, including participation in the Mega Man Legends 3 Developer Room. On behalf of the entire Legends team, please accept our sincere apology for failing to meet the expectations of the fans.
We thank you all so much for your extended support of this title and this community, and we hope that you will continue to support the Mega Man franchise as well as other Capcom games.
While Capcom’s press release was lengthier this time, their reason was still a little shadowy. “Did not met the required criteria.” That was the closest thing upset fans got to an actual reason for Mega Man Legends 3 being cancelled. It was at this time that most fans began to think that, with Keiji Inafune (creator of Mega Man) having left Capcom the previous year, Capcom no longer had much of a desire to work on any Mega Man projects and decided to quickly shut down any and all projects involving Inafune’s little blue digital son.
“Surely Mega Man X will be in Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3, though!” This was the belief of everyone. Few doubted that Mega Man X would not appear. Belief that X was in the game was overwhelming, and why wouldn’t it be? Niitsuma seemed positive towards X, and the previous polls made it clear that fans wanted X more than any other Capcom character. The fact that X was more requested than Marvel vs Capcom veteran Strider Hiryu was almost unbelievable.
So, when Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 was officially announced, Capcom showed off Strider Hiryu and Firebrand. Strider Hiryu, a character that everyone wanted… And Firebrand, a character that nobody wanted. That same afternoon, the full roster for Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 leaked. Mega Man X was not on the roster… But who was?
Phoenix Wright, a character who arguably has far less potential than Mega Man X (or almost any Capcom character) made it onto the roster. Now, remember that comment made earlier by Niitsuma? When he said that Mega Man couldn’t be added because they would not be able to make a decent movelist for him? Interestingly enough, many fans made their own very legit looking movelists for X and they seemed very plausible… But Phoenix Wright? He’s a lawyer who points his finger and shouts “Objection!” He doesn’t even fight anybody. The closest thing he has to a weapon is a briefcase, so… Just how is Phoenix Wright more fit for Marvel vs Capcom than Mega Man X, a character who has a huge arsenal of weapons and can air dash, power himself up, wall climb, and many other cool things?
Spencer from Siliconera spoke to Niitsuma at SDCC 2011 about the exclusion of Mega Man X. What did the producer have to say? Well…
“I’m sorry, there is no Mega Man in Ultimate. We had a lot of requests from fans for Mega Man or at least one of them to be in the game. Out of all of the requests we got for Capcom characters, he just didn’t enter the top part of the ranking. Unfortunately, he didn’t make the cut.”
Now I never really cared if Mega Man made it into the game or not, but… Isn’t this a flat out lie? Mega Man X was the most demanded character by fans. Strider Hiryu was second on the list and Phoenix Wright was third. Firebrand barely even made it onto the character request poll results and is in. Nemesis, another Capcom character in Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3, was hardly even demanded… Yet there he is?
So what is the general consensus here guys? Has Capcom decided to ditch Mega Man entirely? It’s more than apparent that they have some kind of “hate” on the Blue Bomber at the moment, as silly as that sounds. They do not deem him marketable enough to have a highly customizable Live/PSN game, a highly demanded sequel to a beloved spin-off series, or to even appear in a fighting game that supposedly features Capcom’s best characters. Yup, Capcom’s absolute best. The cream of the crop! Like… Firebrand, Hsien-Ko, Nemesis, and Spencer. Even Trish is more iconic in Capcom’s world than Mega Man now, which I find very peculiar. Nothing against Trish since she’s on my main team in MvC3, but really Capcom?
Let’s recap the adventures of Mega Man in 2011:
Appearance in Marvel vs Capcom 3? Denied.
Release of the highly customizable and ambitious Mega Man Universe title? Denied.
Appearance in Marvel vs Capcom 3 as a DLC character after being highly demanded? Denied.
Release of the highly demanded and requested Mega Man Legends 3? Denied.
Appearance in Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3? Denied.
Five strikes, Mega Man. You were supposed to be “out” on three strikes. Sorry, bud.
From a fan’s perspective, does this even make any sense? Especially after the recent Mega Man resurgence with Mega Man 9 and Mega Man 10 which were both amazing gifts made just for the loyal and older fans? This really does not seem to make any sense at all since those two games sold like wildfire, so Mega Man is still very marketable.
So, Capcom… What gives?