Who was there: Nine Capcom developers, producers, and translators, including Mega Man creator Keiji Inafune, Okamiden producer Motohide Eshiro, Ghost Trick producer Hironobu Takeshita, Sengoku Basara producer Hiroyuki Kobayashi, and Bionic Commando Rearmed 2's Ray Jimenez.
What they talked about: The "Capcom 2010 and Beyond!" panel was advertised as a comprehensive look at its coming lineup, full of trailers and news about Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Dead Rising 2, Okamiden, Ghost Trick, Bionic Commando Rearmed 2, Sengoku Basara, and a new game announcement from Inafune.
After introductions for the packed panel, the session started off with a new Dead Rising 2 trailer done in the style of a Fortune City tourism video, emphasizing the abundance of improvisational weapons available to players and ending with the September 28 release date.
Kobayashi started off talking about Sengoku Basara: Samurai Heroes, the latest installment in Capcom's Dynasty Warriors-style action series. Although the game is set in feudal Japan, the trailer shown for the audience made it clear that historical accuracy is taking a backseat to colorful characters with superhuman abilities.
Players will be able to choose from more than 15 characters in the final game, Kobayashi said, plowing through thousands of enemies with an assortment of melee attacks and a wide variety of weaponry, including firearms. Kobayashi likened the game's action focus to Devil May Cry, which he also produced. The game will be launched October 12 in North America on the Wii and PlayStation 3.
Jimenez was up next to talk about Bionic Commando Rearmed 2. Set for release on PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Arcade early next year, the game introduces a jumping ability to the series. Anticipating that series purists would bemoan the loss of one of Bionic Commando's defining traits, Jimenez stressed that the jump wouldn't change the game too much, and Rearmed 2 would still be exceptionally hard. That said, he acknowledged that it was added to make the game a little easier for people who were frustrated by the lack of jumping in previous games.
Okamiden for the DS was up next. Set months after the conclusion of the original Okami, the DS follow-up sees Amaterasu reborn into the wolf cub Chibiterasu, who with the help of a variety of partners, must once again use the Celestial Brush power to bring life back to a world threatened by a froglike Demon King.
Eshiro said the game re-creates the world of the original PlayStation 2 title, calling it a no-brainer to bring the game's Celestial Brush mechanic to the DS, where players can already draw on the touch screen. The result is a smoother, more intuitive experience, he said. The developer is also packing new puzzle-solving elements into the game. Okamiden will arrive in stores early next year.
Capcom's other DS game received its due next, with Takeshita briefing the audience on Ghost Trick. It's a new mystery game from Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney creator Shu Takumi, so Takeshita assured the audience that they can expect the same variety of engaging characters. In Ghost Trick, the player takes control of a man who woke up dead and with a case of amnesia. The gameplay boils down to two simple commands: possess and manipulate. Ghost Trick is set for a winter 2010 release.
After Ghost Trick, it was time for Marvel vs. Capcom 3, which drew a loud cheer from the Comic-Con crowd. A trailer of the game showed off a variety of characters and some of the series' signature crazy combos, with Devil May Cry's Dante getting a murmur of approval and Deadpool inspiring an ovation. Since that game has its own panel set for tomorrow's Comic-Con coverage, it was time to move on to the session's big finish, Mega Man Universe.
Inafune introduced both the game and Ito, who is producing the title for the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Arcade. He also recapped the history of Mega Man, dating back to his work creating the original NES game in 1987. He said he is stopped by Mega Man fans in the West more often than in Japan, but the one common trait is that they always proclaim to be "the No.1 Mega Man fan." He joked that anyone wanting to lay final claim to that title should show up for a fight at the Capcom booth later, and then he quickly retracted the suggestion to laughs.
Moving on to Mega Man Universe, Inafune admitted that the recent trailer announcing the title was vague, and he began to explain the thinking behind it. Everyone has their own idea of what Mega Man is or should be, Inafune said. So the idea behind the game was to retain as much of the 8-bit look and feel of Mega Man as they could, while at the same time allowing people to project their own idea of what the character should be on the game. The goal is to let gamers play as the Mega Man of their dreams.
Another big goal for the game is to unite Mega Man fans from around the planet in one place. Unfortunately, Inafune said he couldn't get into any more detail. However, he did say he would let the crowd in on a little information against his better judgment. Mega Man Universe is not the only game currently in the works starring the Blue Bomber. There's at least one more, and Inafune said it was a project people had requested for quite a while. That brought scattered calls for Mega Man Legends 3 from the crowd, to which Inafune simply responded, "Thank you."
The producer then threw armfuls of foam Mega Man blaster arms into the audience, bringing an end to the show.
Quote: "Americans tend to pronounce my name as 'take s***.' But please be assured this game is anything but s***."--Hironobu Takeshita, introducing himself and Ghost Trick.
The takeaway: Capcom has a varied lineup of games waiting in the wings, but the big deal for most attendees was clearly the tease about Mega Man Legends 3.
Who knew?: In Japan, Mega Man is known as Rock Man. The name was changed for American audiences, even though Inafune didn't like the new moniker. He thought "Mega Man" was goofy, but Capcom USA execs insisted on it, just like they insisted on the infamous package art for the game.