Sunday, January 27, 2008

In the first round of Fantasy Fights from the Infinite Wars, Marvel proved their overall superiority in fifteen seperate battles that culminated with your vote deciding their fate. Now, with DC vanquished, the Marvel Heroes are back to tangle with some old enemies: The world warriors of Capcom's Street Fighter!

By popular demand the Fantasy Fights are sticking around for seven more rounds of non-stop non-canon action! When the characters met in the video games, they were united against common goals, but this time some of Marvel's greatest fighters will be initiated as they duke it out for supremacy over the SF classics!

Strength: Draw 3 (Athlete)
Intelligence: Wolverine 4 (Tactician)
Speed: Draw 3 (Athlete)
Stamina: Wolverine 6 (Generator)
Agility: Draw 3 (Acrobat)
Fighting Ability: Wolverine 6 (Warrior)
Energy Powers: Ryu 3 (Explosives)

The Hook...
We're wrapping things up, and for the final few Fantasy Fights we're taking a look at match-ups that could actually have occured in the right gaming sessions!
Yesterday we took a look at the All-American showdown between Guile and Captain America, but today the resonances are a little less obvious!

Ryu and Wolverine are obviously two of the most popular and easily identified icons from their respective companies, but it's their status as wandering warriors that brings them to our attention. While each holds their friends very close, they have found themselves distanced by their fighting spirit, and the internal darkness each has struggled with.

RYU succumbs to the dark hadou when he steps in the ring with ZANGIEF: Seen in STREET FIGHTER ALPHA, the animated movie!For Ryu, the sinister temptation of the dark hadou energy truly tests the truth of his spirit and the motivation of his fighting. Wolverine has struggled with even deeper darkness, facing his own murderous intent in the form of the feral rages that lurk deep within his mutant mind.

It's easy to discount Wolverine's fighting skill, observing him as little more than a berzerker. More often than not that's probably true, but time in Ryu's homeland of Japan marks a period of growth in an already impressive set of hand-to-hand combative skills. Wolverine is said to be akin to a masterless samurai, not unlike Ryu, who wanders the planet without destination, but a strong sense of justice and favour for the innocent.

The Math: Wolverine Ranking: Wolverine (#3)

The Battle...
Wow! It's until I actually sit down and try to think of how this kind of fight is going to go that I really appreciate how interesting it is. Both characters represent a superhuman advantage. For Wolverine, being in-close with the threat of his retractable adamantium claws is going to be a threat even greater than anything Ryu's seen from Vega. On the flipside, Ryu's ranged game with the hadouken fireball gives him just as lethal an option against the Canuck!

A very still scene is almost inevitable at opening.
Wolverine's going to reflect the Japanese sensibilities of Ryu, each well aware of the threat the other represents. They aren't going to be in such a rush to beat each other senseless, and there might even be an instant sense of respect between two fierce, but ultimately good hearted warriors.

I couldn't imagine who would lead, but the first punch will inevitably be lost as the exchange quickly heats up. Wolverine's going to let the healing factor do it's job, absorbing a lot of what the more skilled Ryu has to offer. I wouldn't expect anything overly fancy from a pair of seasoned fighters, but that doesn't mean RYU shows DHALSIM what he's made of when he seeks training in STREET FIGHTER II #3!they're going to be going easy. Ryu's going to throw a lot of muscle into his shots, while Wolverine will take advantage of any opening that arises.

A sense of ceremony would probably keep Wolverine from using the claws, but as the fight progresses it's going to come down to whether or not instinct takes over. Ryu's ki is going to start to factor in as the two move across their terrain more often, and some of the kicks and footwork that the shorter Wolverine doesn't have are going to be a part of Ryu's arsenal. It lets him take the fight to Wolverine, without worrying about the gritty close quarter blows the mutant can dish out, even without claws.

As things get more heated Wolverine's going to start chasing the fight, and as his sweat builds the claws are bound to come out. A lot of wide, but controlled slashes are going to start happening, designed to wound as opposed to lop.
Ryu's going to come out with a few grazes, and he might need a new gi, but his superior fight skills will see him put enough distance between he and his opponent, in the absence of swift maneuverability.

With the stakes reaching a peak, Ryu's going to grab the finisher, and even if Wolverine manages to play a strategy beyond abusing his healing factor, the decision will be taken away. A mid-strength hadouken finishes it off, at least until Wolverine recovers. The eventual rematch? Who knows?...

WOLVERINE tastes a swift defeat from another Japanese fighter, THE GORGON: As seen in WOLVERINE #20!RYU charges up for a HADOUKEN fireball when he faces off against ZANGIEF: Seen in STREET FIGHTER ALPHA!
The Hammer...
Will STREET FIGHTER succeed where DC failed, and come out number one? YOU DECIDE!Well, to the shock of everyone in the room I'm sure, we find ourselves with a Capcom/Marvel tie! Good thing we're geared up for a special bonus round Thursday; the end of the month! Hey, even more fortunate that we've got ourselves a poll, because it's up to you the War Mongers to steer the fate of the respective franchises! Just like when you picked The Sentry to defeat Superman [DC/Marvel Round 15], the final representatives will go head-to-head with your outcome deciding the winner!

Marvel have got the lead once more, so if you world warriors want to prove your might to the Marvel zombies, you're going to have to start voting now!

Y'know, speaking of Wolverine, it kinda brings something to my attention. It should be fairly stated that I'm not exactly the biggest X-Fan in the comics blogosphere, but like most, have a passing acquaintance with the characters. Wolverine currently sits in our cumulative top three, and accounts for the majority of X-Men related entries.

Looking ahead to upcoming features on the Infinite Wars, we may just have to fix up the cosmic balance. Always interested in reflecting the zeitgeist, buzz surrounding the interest stirring Messiah Complex puts forward a compelling argument for the X-Men, even if I hold complete and utter disinterest for a story that crams a bunch of characters I'm not interested in; into a story that sounds typically dismal for the X-Franchise; which has already suffered, I believe, post-Decimation; with a multi-title crossover reminding us of how far we've come.

Still, to a degree we are but slaves to you, the readers.
And whether or not any of us are terribly interested in taking a look at the X-Men, there aren't a lot of other certainties promoting themselves early in the game. That, however, is probably discussion best saved for the upcoming February Punch-Up. For that, I'll see you at the beginning of the month, but otherwise, stay tuned for more fisticuffs as we head toward a fresh top 5 for 2008!

3 versus 3


buzzlefett said...

Ryu over Wolverine?! Are you nuts?!

Seriously though, Wolverine has taken A LOT worse than a hadoken fireball and won many a fight. I don't see how Ryu gets around the healing factor. And it's not like Wolverine doesn't have some pretty amazing fighting skills of his own. He's been in the military, done Black Ops, and lived for a while in Japan learning the ways of the Samurai. Plus, he's taken down a lot tougher opponents than Ryu on a pretty regular basis. Let's not forget, he is the best at what he does!

Who's to say that he wouldn't just take a Ryu kick to the face just so he could get close enough to use the claws? I don't believe, as you do, that he would avoid using them because they are his bread and butter. They give him the edge (no pun intended).

That being said, I don't know a lot about the Street Fighter comics because they never really interested me. So I'm looking at this kind of one-sided.

Mike Haseloff said...

For me, a lot of this comes down to precedent. Wolverine might be the best there is at what he does, but quite often that's getting shot to crap until eventually he can catch up with his foe less prepared.

Likewise, I think it's rare for Wolverine to bring the claws to a fight with one of the good guys.

Ryu is undoubtedly the far better [more skilled] fighter of the two, and though common in an arcade gaming context, typically (and reasonably) the energy attacks are given a bit more weight in story.

Wolverine's definitely coming back from an energy fireball, but I really think it's enough to put him down. Especially in what I believe would be a fair fight.

Ryu's sort of that prototypical character that's very quiet and maybe even reluctant to fight, so I think that respect for ceremony is going to be part of Wolverine's undoing, too. That, and sloppy fighting.