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Let's talk about that surprise Marvel vs. Capcom 2 reveal for EVO 2020, what the players are saying and what this could mean for the series' future

It was apparently a surprise for even those that are going to be playing

Posted by Dakota 'DarkHorse' Hills • February 5, 2020 at 11:38 a.m. PST • Comments: 50

Last night set the pace for pretty much the rest of the year for the fighting game community, as EVO announced its mainstage titles where some surprising picks made the list — and some were left off.

Marvel vs. Capcom 2 was the ninth and final game revealed for EVO 2020 for a special 20th anniversary invitational to dig into the event's history to the point it even pre-dates the EVO name change.

From its release in 2000 until Marvel vs. Capcom 3's release in 2011, MvC2 was one of EVO's most consistent mainstage events by showing up every year even back when the tournament was still called Battle by the Bay.

Despite this decade-long history of world titles, only four players ever actually managed to win Marvel 2 on the main stage which works out perfectly for the plans of the Evolution organizers.

Justin Wong, Ducvader / Duc Do, IFC|Yipes and EMP|Santhrax will make up half of the eight-man invitational as the former EVO champs which none of them apparently knew was going to happen beforehand.

"WHAT THEY DIDNT TELL ME IM IN THIS TOURNEY UNTIL JUST NOW LMFAO," tweeted JWong following the reveal, who won the EVO crown six of those years beginning with 2001.

Marvel 2 EVO champ first reactions image #1 Marvel 2 EVO champ first reactions image #2 Marvel 2 EVO champ first reactions image #3
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The original EVO champ Duc doesn't seem to have publicly posted anything about Marvel 2's revival yet, but Yipes and Sanford Kelly seem happy with the decision though they made clear what they want for the remaining four players to join them.

"As long as it's not a popularity contest for the final 4 spots I'm game with all of this," said Yipes after the stream. "This is literally something we don't see everyday,so i would love to see everyone back on the sticks PLEASE?!?!"

EVO organizer Joey 'Mr. Wizard' Cuellar has now clarified that there will indeed be four qualifier events for the four remaining spots in the MvC2: 20urnament of Champions. The first will be in April at both NorCal Regionals and April Annihilation follwed by Combo Breaker in May and a Last Chance Qualifier on the first day of EVO.

This surprise announcement also grabbed the attention of other top competitors including MvC3's first EVO winner Viscant, who says he wants to try to make it to the Marvel 2 stage whether that be as a player or commentator.

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Even though the excitement for Marvel vs. Capcom 2's mini-revival took the FGC by storm last night, it also dug up some scars from two years ago when Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite was not included in EVO 2018's lineup.

This would mark the first time since 2000 that the series did not have a mainstage presence though the EVO organizers revealed that it wasn't just their decision for what can and cannot show up at their big events.

"I know that MvC:I is being played," said MarkMan following the 2018 revelations. "Hard to include a game that doesn't have support. I'm not talking about Capcom [because] they've supported it the most..."

MarkMan's statements seemed to imply that there was some sort of rift having grown between Capcom and Disney, who own Marvel, after they had just gotten back together to make Infinite and re-release Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3.

This was further supported by the fact that Marvel Infinite was also left off of the Capcom Pro Tour for 2018 and 2019 while the game essentially didn't see any more substantive updates after that point.

That rift is part of what makes this Marvel 2 announcement so interesting. Have the companies once again patched things up or did they simply just grant their blessings to use this 20-year old game?

Unless there's some sort of announcement tied to this, we may never know how exactly all of this came together, but that won't stop the fighting game community from speculating.

A move like this doesn't mean that we should expect a Marvel vs. Capcom 4 anytime soon though this does suggest that relations between the companies have improved since Infinite's poorly-received launch.

It's also an interesting play to make considering there's no official way to buy Marvel vs. Capcom 2 anymore. The PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 releases along with the iOS version have long since been pulled from digital shelves.

The future for Marvel-based fighting games certainly got a lot more open-ended following last night's events, but we should also be prepared to accept that this may be a final big farewell to one of the community's favorite franchises.

EVO 2020 is set to take place once again in Las Vegas, Nevada from July 31–Aug. 2 with the other mainstage games including Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Tekken 7, Street Fighter 5: Champion Edition, Dragon Ball FighterZ, Samurai Shodown, Granblue Fantasy: Versus, Soul Calibur 6 and Under Night In-Birth Exe:Late[cl-r].

With how much history there is with Marvel vs. Capcom 2 at EVO and the FGC, those newer to the scene may need to go back and do their homework to get in on the 20 years worth of stories. A great place to start may be the grand finals match between Justin Wong and Yipes from EVO 2007 which you can check out below.

As an added bonus, fighting game content creator Maximilian jokingly bet before the reveal that he'd donate 100 gift subs on Twitch if Marvel 2 was announced as an official EVO game for 2020... and he got his wish with some NSFW language.

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