Marvel superheroes are popular figures in all kinds of video games, and fighting games are no exception. Though Capcom games like Marvel Vs. Capcom are the most well-known, other fighting games such as X-Men: Next Dimension and Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects have all featured iconic Marvel characters. With their unique powers and abilities, Marvel superheroes are perfect for filling a wide range of fighting-game archetypes.
With games like Street Fighter 6 and Mortal Kombat 1 bringing about a new renaissance for the fighting genre, many Marvel-loving fighter fans have been clamoring for their favorite comic book heroes to step into the ring again. Whether they’ve appeared in a fighting game or not, many Marvel heroes feel as if they were made for this unique and beloved genre.
Deadpool has appeared in fighting games before, and he’s a popular pick for many reasons. His swords, guns, and teleportation abilities give him numerous options to keep pressure on his opponent from any range. But what makes Deadpool perfect for a fighting game is his personality.
Deadpool is always completely aware of whatever media he’s in, including video games. His fourth-wall-breaking humor contributes not only to his banter, but to his moveset. He can smack opponents with their own health bars, or dodge an opponent by leaning into the foreground. This not only makes him a useful character, but provides a hilarious meta-commentary on fighting games that fans adore.
While she might not be instantly recognizable to mainstream audiences, popular X-Men member Magik would still make a great addition to a fighting game’s roster. With her sword and sorcery, Magik has the potential to play as a zoner with plenty of dangerous close-range options. But Magik’s best potential lies in her portals.
Magik can create portals that allow her to quickly traverse the battlefield with ease, further limiting her opponent’s options. Magik can also travel through dimensions, giving the potential for mind-bending finishing moves. With Rain using a similar portal mechanic in Mortal Kombat 1, the potential for a character like Magik is there.
One of the most popular members of the X-Men, Nightcrawler possesses a prehensile tail and the ability to teleport anywhere he can see. While this ability may sound limited, it’s more than enough to make Kurt a monster in a fighting game’s localized arena. After reaching his opponent in the blink of an eye, his tail, acrobatics, and fencing skills would make him a menace.
Teleportation, sword-fighting, and even tails are not uncommon abilities in fighting games. Mortal Kombat 1’s gray ninja Smoke in particular has proven extremely popular thanks to his teleportation powers. By combining all these features, Nightcrawler has amazing potential to dominate as a rushdown character.
A prominent member of the Eternals, Thena proved to be one of the most beloved parts of the MCU movie of the same name. She owes a fair amount of her acclaim to her awesome ability to manifest weapons from cosmic energy. With many media emulating the MCU interpretations of Marvel characters, its likely Thena would have this power in a fighting game.
The ability to pull weapons out of thin air would be incredibly useful in a genre that rewards fast attacks and faster reflexes. The instant manifestation of her arsenal would grant Thena a large variety of moves with very quick startup animations. This would allow Thena to unleash a barrage of powerful attacks that would be difficult to react to.
6 Moon Knight
Moon Knight has been gaining popularity both in and out of comics, making him prime for showing up in a video game. With his arsenal of weapons, gadgets, and absolutely brutal fighting style, Moon Knight would feel right at home in a fighting game. With Moon Knight having experience fighting thugs and terrifying monsters alike, he’s already prepared to go up against the casts of many fighting games.
Moon Knight’s gadgets and mystical armaments offer many possibilities for his potential moveset. On top of this, Moon Knight can also switch to his Mr. Knight persona to access an entirely different set of abilities. This would give players more options and make it harder for their enemies to react to their moves.
5 Misty Knight
As a former police officer with an awesome name and a bionic arm, Misty Knight already sounds like a fighting game character. As a popular character in the comics, Misty has many fans who would love to see her make more appearances in other forms of media. Aside from a detective-style action game, a fighting game might be the best place for her.
Misty is an expert with firearms, giving her plenty of options when she’s at long range. When her enemies close the distance, her arm gives her tremendous grip strength to make her a powerful grappler. Her arm has also exhibited a cryo-beam and various other abilities throughout the comics, giving her even more options to surprise opponents.
Shang-Chi, with his expertise in martial arts, is best-suited to a fighting game. After starring in one of the MCU’s most well-received movies, Shang-Chi’s popularity has never been higher. As a result, very few people would think it odd to see him in a video game.
Shang-Chi is considered to be one of the greatest martial artists in the world, which makes a fighting game the best possible medium for his abilities. The fast reflexes and split-second decision-making fighting games require are the best way to help players feel like Shang-Chi. A game could also take a page from the MCU and give Shang-Chi the Ten Rings to give him even cooler abilities.
Fighting games are full of unique character archetypes such as fighting bears, green-skinned electrical monsters, and evil shape-shifting sorcerers who devour souls. Being a psychic mutant ninja, Psylocke would fit right in with one of these eclectic casts. With her most famous ability being a sword made of psychic energy, Psylocke is sure to attract even fans that haven’t heard of her.
Psylocke’s iconic psychic sword would obviously make her a dangerous opponent at close range. Its transient nature would also lend itself to many attacks with quick startup animations. But Psylocke has various other psychic abilities such as telekinesis that would give her more variety and help trip up opponents.
Spider-Man has appeared in almost every fighting game with Marvel characters, and it’s for good reason. While open world games are where the wall-crawler finds the most success in single-player endeavors, Spidey possesses a unique power set that feels almost tailor-made for a fighting game.
Spider-Man is strong, fast, agile, and capable of delivering incredible punishment both on the ground and the air. His webs can fill the highly-desirable role of controlling distance between the opponent and also temporarily immobilizing them. His quick, unpredictable movements practically beg for him to be made into a mixup and rushdown character.
1 Ms. Marvel
Already a popular character in the comics, Ms. Marvel has starred in her own Disney+ series and is set to appear in The Marvels. Her popularity makes her a perfect addition for a video game. With her unique set of powers, she would find great success on the roster of a fighting game.
With the power to stretch and grow parts of her body, Ms. Marvel can pull out attacks with large hit boxes and very little startup time. She could hit from across the screen, and her trademark giant hands would make her awesome at grappling. Even if a game uses her MCU powerset, she could be an excellent zoner while still having the limb-based moves comic-fans expect.