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Capcom vs. SNK 3 might have actually been in development at some point

Capcom interview with former King of Fighters director heavily hints that the project was in production, but cancelled

Posted by Steven 'Dreamking23' Chavez • May 9, 2018 at 9:03 a.m. PDT • Comments: 76

Capcom has seen its fair share of crossover titles over the years. From legendary Tekken fighters to some of Marvel Comics' greatest heroes and villains, the world warriors and company have clashed with all manner of combatants.

However, there is an entry in the versus series that holds a special place in the hearts of veteran fighting gamers. I'm talking, of course, about Capcom vs. SNK 2.

The 3v3, King of Fighters-style competitive fighter saw its initial release back in August 2001 and pit classic Capcom contenders against SNK's best in fast-paced fighting action. Needless to say, this title saw much major tournament play, with top players such as CYG|Daigo, FOX|Justin Wong, and even now former Capcom employee Peter "Combofiend" Rosas being consistent competitors.

It's been a long time since we've seen a new game in the series, and a "Capcom vs. SNK 3" is probably the most highly requested project from fans I've come across during my time in the fighting game community -- a new Darkstalkers also being high on the list.

According to an interview from late last year with former King of Fighters series director Toyohisa Tanabe, Capcom vs. SNK 3 might have actually been in development, but ultimately cancelled, at some point.

The interview, originally shared on Capcom's Shadaloo C.R.I website back in November 2017 and brought to our attention today (thanks, ScarletTerror), features Capcom developer Takayuki Nakayama speaking with Mr. Tanabe about the cancelled Capcom Fighting All Stars fighting game.

Tanabe was the director on the project, and the two developers delve into how the title got started, discuss some of the plans that were in place for it, and more.

"Ah, that would be ****** ** *** *!" — Capcom's Takayuki Nakayama.

Jumping right into it, Mr. Tanabe mentions that he was brought in to lead the Capcom Fighting All Stars team after leaving his company of employment in 2001 when it "fell apart for a number of reasons." Though he doesn't state it outright, Tanabe is referring to SNK who filed for bankruptcy in October 2001, placing their intellectual property rights up for auction at the time.

Tanabe notes that former Capcom director Yoshiki Okamoto -- who brought Tanabe and his development team on board for Capcom Fighting All Stars -- was also working on an action game at the time. From there, he mentions what seems very much like Capcom vs. SNK 3.

"Right before Fighting All Stars got started, there was another fighting game that got stopped during development..." Tanabe says. Nakayama responds with "Ah, that would be ****** ** *** *!"

Nakayama goes on to say that he has seen designs and models for this mystery project.

Looking at the letter count of the asterisks, it's pretty easy to see how it perfectly fits "Capcom vs. SNK 3." Given the time period as well, and those involved, it seems pretty likely that a third iteration in the franchise was under development, but ultimately scrapped due to the circumstances.

According to Tanabe, there were plans to reuse assets from this cancelled project in Capcom Fighting All Stars. He also mentions that a secret character from his old company was set to be playable in Capcom Fighting All Stars.

In the interview, the character is referred to as "***" and had pixel art created for them. Based on the silhouette, the mystery fighter was likely King of Fighters' Kyo and if reused assets were being incorporated here, that is only further hint at Capcom vs. SNK 3's existence.

Capcom Fighting All Stars secret character image #1
Click images for larger versions

It's unfortunate that a Capcom vs. SNK 3 never came to fruition. Perhaps with the recent success of both SNK and Capcom -- with their mainstay titles King of Fighters 14 and Street Fighter 5, respectively, seeing continued support -- we can finally see the long-awaited crossover make its return.

Would you want to see a Capcom vs. SNK 3 nowadays? Let us know in the comments below!

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