Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 Character Primer – Nova

Nova Prime - Richard Rider!
What do you guys know about Nova?  Nothing?  Unless you love the New Warriors or the cosmic Marvel shenanigans, chances are you haven’t seen this guy cannonballing into the bad guys’ faces.  Luckily I’ve got the lowdown on this garishly clad cosmonaut so sit back, relax, and enjoy the read.

Firstly, Nova is actually Richard Rider, an all ’round average American teen.  In a story that eerily resembles Hal Jordan’s origins, Rider discovers Rhomann Dey, a dying alien and the last centurion of the Nova Corps of Xandar.  Dey bequeaths the youngster with all the powers of the Nova Prime (flight, strength, energy blasts, etc.) and Rider starts beating the crap out of the thugs in New York City.

Nova punching Tiger Shark. I love it.

To make a long story a little shorter Xandar eventually recalls its centurions, the planet having been reformed, and then Nova starts punching cosmic thugs.

After a while Nova gets tired of the endless void and the endless punching (but not really), and after racking up some great rivalries and deadly enemies, he decides to go back to Earth, relinquishing his powers.  He tries to live Katy Perry’s Teenage Dream but like a junky, he goes into Nova Force withdrawal until Night Thrasher reawakens the energy inside him and invites Rich to join the New Warriors.  For a while he teams up with the Thrasher, Namora, Speedball, and the rest of the gang but it’s not long before he takes to the stars again as a member of Xandar’s finest.  If he’d been stateside, things might have gone differently in Stamford on that fateful day that sparked the Civil War.  Alas, it was not to be.

Rich decides not to pick sides in the war, especially since there are more pressing matters developing at the fringes of the universe. Eventually everything comes to a head when the Annihilation Wave rolls out from the Negative Zone.  Nova and his United Front take on the Wave, legion upon legion of Annihilus’ insectile minions, until the psychotic conqueror taps into the power of Galactus.  In an all too brief summation of way too many comics composing the Annihilation: Ronan the Accuser is bad ass, millions of worlds are destroyed, Thanos does some crazy shit, Drax kills people and then Thanos, Nova and his pals lose the war, and then in a final showdown with Annihilus, Rich rips his insides out through his freaking mouth!

Let's see what you had for BREAKFAST!

From there he and the Worldmind, the source of the Nova Force, try to rebuild the Nova Corps.  They recruit some new members, among them Rich’s younger brother Robbie, the Shi’ar Imperium shows up, massacres some more centurions, and then Nova deals with Cthulu-esque creatures that don’t belong in our dimension.  Did I mention he takes on the Phalanx too?  Richard Rider’s life = madness.

Power-wise Nova has a lot going for him when he’s in possession of the Nova Force.  His official moniker – Nova, the human rocket – spells out one of his chief abilities: he can blast through the air with the greatest of ease.  He can fly, has super strength, agility, speed, and reflexes.  He can survive in the void as long as he’s wearing his suit and the Xandarian Worldmind helps him open stargates and calculate complex plans of attack in seconds.  He also has access to powerful energy blasts, can absorb energy directed at him, and has shields that function somewhat like Invisible Woman’s forcefields.
Blasting Shuma-Gorath's cousin in the face... eye? Whatevs.

Honestly I think Nova looks absolutely solid.  I love the fact that he has 3 different level 1 hypers that he can use in the air.  He can OTG himself, has a serious beam hyper, projectiles, and some decent speed and power.  Also he’s got that flight mode which could substantially increase his combo ability.  His animations leave a lot to be desired and like Iron Fist, I’m a little disappointed in his overall presentation.  I think he’ll be decent but…

If you haven’t seen the release videos yet check them out below!

Again ladies and gentleman, if you dig any of this stuff leave me a comment below and let me know what I could improve on.

Also don’t forget to follow me on Twitter for more comic book and fighting game goodness – Kingofbreaker


17 thoughts on “Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 Character Primer – Nova”

  1. As always another great read. His life does indeed seem chaotic. It always seemed to me that Marvel wasn’t sure if they wanted to keep Nova grounded or have him gallivanting in space. Never knew too much about and his powers always reminded me of Cannonball (X-MEN). It would be cool if Cannonball became a part of the Nova corps. I would have to agree with you that his presentation is generic especially when compared to his introduction partner Phoenix Wright. This story went down good with my cup of Joe. Thank you, Sir!

  2. How in god’s name was he able to rip Annihilus’ guts out through his throat like that? 0___0 I think I might be interested in the cosmic Marvel stuff and want to read Annihilation now. So far all I’ve read of this cosmic Marvel stuff is the first issue of Guardians of the Galaxy and the Prelude to Annihilation Conquest.

  3. Awesome writeup, Sumo.

    Have you seen the latest CG intro to UMvC3? It’s basically a big still shot of characters going at each other, and some of the crossover pairups have changed. Wolverine and Ryu are no longer fighting each other: Logan’s dancing with Vergil…

    … And Nova with Ryu.

    Which seems a tad one-side.

    Just FYI in case you didn’t know.

  4. Real nice stuff here. I’m a Marvel Head and remember him from the 90’s or late 80’s. I read New Warriors for a while. He’s pretty cool. I will try him out in the new game. Real nice write up,good job!

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