hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Review: Capcom 30th Anniversary Character Encyclopedia

10:00 PM on 12.25.2013 // Jonathan Holmes

From Ada Wong to Zero

[Update: The book is currently on-sale for just over $8]

The people running the show at Capcom have been irritating fans and employees alike for years now -- burning bridges, nickel and diming consumers, canceling games, landlocking games, and basically carrying on like Tron Bonne on a Servbot kicking spree. Beneath these managers and directors are legions of Capcom employees that are madly in love with Capcom's pantheon of iconic characters and genre-defining intellectual properties. I'm betting it was one of these passionate Servbots that put the Capcom 30th Anniversary Character Encyclopedia into motion. 

It's not a perfect collection, but it's still quite impressive. The attention to detail and inclusion of some of Capcom's most obscure characters speaks to the genuine love that went into this tome. Even the longtime Capcom fans will find some fun new facts to bone up on.

Capcom 30th Anniversary Character Encyclopedia
Developer: Capcom
Publisher: DK, Brady Games
Released: October 21, 2013
MSRP: $16.99

First, the technical stuff. The paper stock is thick and glossy, the hard cover is sturdy enough to withstand sitting in my bathroom for over a month, and the magazine size of the anthology is just big enough to look important, but not so large that it looks unwieldy on a coffee table or toilet tank. The artwork ranges from classic Bengus/Akiman illustrations, character renders, and newer artwork created to promote Capcom's various re-releases of classic titles. Most profiles get two pieces of artwork each, usually one smaller piece of classic art to show the character's roots and a larger, newer piece of art taking up the majority of the page.

Sadly, there are no big licensed Western properties here like Dungeons and Dragons or Aliens Vs. Predator (we miss you Lynn Kurosawa). Beyond those omissions, just about every major Capcom release in the company's history is represented here. The book does a nice job of tracing all of the canonical appearances character scattered characters like Super Joe (Commando, Mercs, Bionic Commando), and even digs back to obscure classics that only sold in the thousands like Chaos LegionOne Piece Mansion, Killer 7, 3 Wonders, Dino Crisis 3, P.N. 03 and Under the Skin, as well as more recent cult favorites like Remember Me, Asura's Wrath, Dragon's Dogma, and Sengoku Basara: Samurai Heroes. This is all on top of the prerequisite Street Fighter, Mega Man, Resident Evil, Breath of Fire, and classic Capcom arcade titles that you'd expect to see front and center in a Capcom encyclopedia. 

Weirdly enough, the only black man in the book is Balrog, which speaks to both Capcom's lack of black men in their games, and the potential preferences of the book's publisher. I love Rival Schools as much of the next guy, but to see nearly every major character from that now-dead fighting game series get attention here while Dudley, Josh Stone, and... that other black guy who was playable in a Capcom game once left unrepresented feels a little weird.

Folks may also take issue with Morrigan's profile (which seems to have been written by a sentient erection) and Poison's write-up (which describes the character as "seemingly female") as off-putting. Maybe this kind of stuff doesn't annoy you at all, in which case, you are likely annoyed at me for pointing it out. If so, then we have now entered a game of internet annoyance tag, and you are now it. 

Beyond those editorial issues, there are a few typos and inaccuracies (how could they forget Strider 2: Journey From Darkness: Strider Returns?) that may rub you the wrong way, though none of them are deal breakers. On the whole, it's a heartfelt, thorough tribute to one of gaming's most prolific and influential publishers. Lets just hope Capcom survives long enough for them to give us a Super Turbo Ultra Capcom XXth Anniversary Character Encyclopedia sometime down the line. 

Jonathan Holmes, Bad Joke Uncle
 Follow Blog + disclosure Tips
"Where do dreams end and reality begin? Videogames, I suppose."- Gainax, FLCL Vol. 1 "The beach, the trees, even the clouds in the sky... everything is build from little tiny pieces of stuff. Ju... more   |   staff directory

 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding * to your whitelists.

Status updates from C-bloggers

ChrisHannard avatarChrisHannard
Glory to The Many. The Many sings to us.
RadicalYoseph avatarRadicalYoseph
Daily VGM #22 (Witcher 2) - Pam Pa Ram (The Witcher 3) [youtube][/youtube] Instant classic 10/10. It's a travesty it wasn't included in the soundtrack. Maybe CDPR is preparing for a special second disc release? I sure hope
Oh, look at that, the rough draft I choose not to delete of this paper I need to do! I can keep adding to that instead of starting over and getting frustrated and quitting. What a novel concept!
Jiraya avatarJiraya
Boys & Girls Whatcha doing ? Have you watched Shimoneta ? GO SEE IT [img][/img]
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
And speaking of Yo-Kai Watch, it sounds like the demo's out!
El Dango avatarEl Dango
Hello, Thomas. I see you're looking at our fine selection of quickposts. Do they please you?
OrochiLeona avatarOrochiLeona
Overwatch Beta livestreaming Thursday. All aboard the AWESOME train. CHOO! CHOO!
PSISomething avatarPSISomething
EXTREMELY SPOOPY TRAILER [youtube][/youtube]
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
I'm coming to realize my time off from blogging has made the progress I made at being succinct fade away into nothingness, as the world will see in about an hour. I also made Valkyrie Drive's boobs even more boring at Japanator last night! Somehow.
Apparently, Kero Blaster got an update... Neat.
Barry Kelly avatarBarry Kelly
[url=""]Deus Ex: Revision is now a thing that's on Steam for free [img][/img][/url]
Mike Martin avatarMike Martin
Wasteland 2 DC is out!
Torchman avatarTorchman
Just a reminder: If you game doesn't have a dancing murderer, or a dancing little girl, your not a GOTY contender.
Rudorlf avatarRudorlf
Season 2 of Fargo is out, and of course Fargo isn't Fargo without dumbass criminals, tragedy and black comedy mixed into one package. BTW, the Organic Mechanic is in this season.
PSISomething avatarPSISomething
Nintendo of America released a YouTube video promo for Fatal Frame 5. They used the 'word' "spoopy."
Pixie The Fairy avatarPixie The Fairy
Had the brilliant idea of watching the original Alien last night before bed. Totally didn't have crazy dreams afterward. Also, Bilbo Baggins was a total jerk in that movie. [img][/img]
gajknight avatargajknight
Sure Niero's all powerful, but does he have lips? Woah...
ShadeOfLight avatarShadeOfLight
Finished playing the fan localization for Ace Investigations 2. These guys did a fantastic job, despite this game having the single most convoluted plot in the entire series. Here's hoping that somehow, someday, Great Ace Attorney will get this treatment.
Jiraya avatarJiraya
Okay internet you done it... Playboy will not get nude girls anymore , too much competition. [img][/img]
more quickposts



Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme

Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo

Back to Top

We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -