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In 1996, after some flirting with their characters as Secret Characters in both X Men Children of the Atom and Marvel Super Heroes, Capcom took the idea and ran with it, making a full-fledged crossover as X-Men vs. Street Fighter.

The game featured Cyclops, Wolverine, Rogue, Gambit, Storm, Sabretooth, Juggernaut and Magneto on the X-Men side, and Ryu, Ken, Chun-Li, Charlie, Dhalsim, Zangief, Cammy, M. Bison (Vega in Japan; "Dictator" for those who use the anti-region-confusion titles) and Akuma representing the Street Fighter franchise.

XSF introduced the tag team fighting dynamic which became the trademark for the Capcom vs. Whatever series of games: players choose two fighters and switch between them on the fly in the middle of battle, eschewing the usual two-round structure started by Street Fighter in favor of a one-round fight (the fight ends when both fighters on one team are eliminated). Each character has their own lifebar, and when switched out, the inactive fighter will heal some of the damage they've taken until called back into action. The game also allows players to use a deadly Double Super Combo where both fighters perform a Super Combo at the same time for massive damage.

The story was all but nonexistent, with the chosen team fighting their way through various team-ups before facing down Apocalypse in a slight genre change. After defeating Apocalypse, you fight against your tag partner using whatever character landed the final blow during the boss battle. So much for teamwork...

Followed in 1997 with Marvel Super Heroes vs. Street Fighter.


The game shows examples of:

 "Je suis le meilleur!"

"La tournament est fini."

  Sabretooth: This ain't no Street Fighter! You lose...

  "HYPER COMBO FINISH!"

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