You don’t know who Rocket Raccoon is? Seriously? You’re such a n00b. Actually no, you’re not because Rocket is an incredibly obscure cosmic Marvel character, that is unless you read Guardians of the Galaxy. If you don’t and you’re still painfully unaware of this anthropomorphic space vermin’s existence read on; you’re definitely not alone.
Until recently, say 3-4 years ago, Rocket hadn’t been in much of anything since the 80’s when Mike Mignola (of Hellboy fame) was pencilling the critter in his 4 issue mini. Now he’s a central member of the Guardians of the Galaxy and a playable character in Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3. Not too shabby Mr. Raccoon.
For those of you uninitiated in Marvel cosmic lore Rocket was originally a glorified orderly on Halfworld, a planet that functioned as an insane asylum in the Keystone Quadrant. Rocket, along with his first mate Wal Rus, took care of the “Loonies” on the fertile side of the planet while the robots who’d originally served as the patient’s wardens built the inmate’s toys on the other half.
A trade war erupted between the two largest toy manufacturers, Judson Jakes and the serpent Lord Dyvyne, both were aiming for a monopoly, and stuff hit the fan. In the end Rocket and his friends emerge victorious, curing the Loonies, deposing Dyvyne and Jakes, and even escaping from Halfworld through the previously unassailable Galacian Wall.
Honestly, no explanation can do this series justice; it’s that bizarre, but if you’re interested you should definitely check it out, if only to get a taste of Mignola’s mainstream pencils before his highly stylized Hellboy stuff. I’ve included links to the mini-series issues below from Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited. For those of you who want to cash in your MDCU subscription you got with the MvC3 Collector’s Edition, you should totally give it a shot.
Now Rocket’s blasting bad guys as the unofficial co-leader of the Guardians of the Galaxy and he’s not afraid to pull out the big guns. I’ve heard rumblings around the interwebs that people are thinking he might play something like Cable, with a reliance on beam specials and hypers. I’m of a like opinion, though to a lesser degree, but before we get into that, what’s Rocket capable of?
Firstly, he’s a raccoon. A genetically modified raccoon, but a raccoon all the same. He’s the got the strength, speed, agility, and reflexes of a raccoon his size. His sense of smell and hearing are far more acute than humans but physically Rocket’s not too much of a threat. One well placed punt and he’s down for the count, but you wouldn’t know it given his scrappy demeanor.
While he may not be able to bench press the bar he more than makes up for it in other ways. He’s a master strategist and tactician and well versed in all sorts of weaponized violence. Whether it’s a bomb or a blaster, in Rocket’s hands it’s especially deadly.
So how might he play? I, like a few other folks, think he’ll be a very heavy projectile based character, much like Arthur. Factor in his diminutive vertical capacity and he’ll be a perfect fit for Team Can’t Touch This: any combination of Amaterasu, Arthur, Joe, and Rocket. I’m guessing he’ll have super short strikes for normals like Joe but hopefully Capcom will give him a quick ground dash and an 8-way air dash to get in close and apply pressure if needed. Flight maybe? I also hope they equip him with either a jet pack or rocket boots; I mean they do call him “Rocket” for a reason.
When I said projectile heavy I do mean projectile heavy. He’s probably one of the few characters that honestly doesn’t have the physical capacity to handle himself in a fight. Oh wait… Tron, M.O.D.O.K., never mind. He’s much more comfortable with guns in his paws and fighting in zero gravity means he gets to play with some massive death-dealing machinery.
Personally I think calling Rocket a cute and fuzzy Cable without seeing how he plays is silly, but I suppose the comparison can be drawn. I think he’ll have an awesome projectile game with quick dashes to help him start combos. He’ll be a zoner for the most part, like Arthur or Chris, bringing the pain from a distance and you’ll need to get exceptionally close to do damage with his tiny raccoon limbs. I think he’ll be a strange mix between Joe, Arthur, and Chris. Does that make sense?
I want to see him wielding a ton of different futuristic-looking guns bigger than he is while flying all over the screen raining deadly light down on his enemies. I hope he has an 8-way air dash and a rocket pack/skates. I hope he becomes #1 on people’s Most Annoying Character lists. I hope he’s viable because I think he could be tons of fun to play.
Regardless, I hope this gave you guys a little info on good ol’ Rocket Raccoon. If you’re craving more Marvel madness let me know in the comments and if you’d like me to do one of these for Doctor Strange I’d be more than happy to oblige, though I figured people knew enough about Marvel’s magical mystic. I don’t want to be redundant. Should I add more Marvel history or just stick to the pertinent fighting game stuff? Also let me know if you’d like me to analyze the gameplay videos of the newly revealed characters like I did for MvC3. I’d like to do one for Nemesis this week. He looks so boss.
If you’d like to destroy me online in MvC3 you can friend me on X Box: iFight4food and you can follow me on Twitter at kingofbreaker if you so choose. Until next time, this is Sumo signing out!