Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 is a fighter filled with various differing mechanics, however the brand new mechanic that is unique to the game is none other than the X-Factor ability. While the game does briefly explain what X-Factor is, it doesn’t exactly delve into the depths of what the technique can achieve. So we’re here to break down X-Factor and teach you how to harness this game-winning power.
X-Factor is an ability that, when used, will buff your fighter with increased strength and speed. It will also passively recover any red health your character has and negate all chip damage on block too. The trick is that X-Factor has three different levels of power which is determined by the number of missing characters on your team in the current match. If you’ve still got a full roster of three fighters, you’ll get X-Factor level 1. If you’ve lost one fighter, then you’ll receive a stronger level 2, and if you are down to your last remaining character, then said character will be buffed with the immensely powerful level 3.
Due to how this system works, X-Factor is often seen as a comeback mechanic, being used only when the player has lost one or preferably two characters. Due to just how much strength is gained in special form, players will often pair the technique with burly anchor characters, or fighters that rely less on extensive combos and more on a small number of powerful hits, such as Sentinel or Vergil.
In order to activate X-Factor, players will have to press all four attack buttons at once. If you are using the default controls, you can also press R2+X (A on Xbox 360) for easy execution as well. Upon activation, the character will begin to glow red and you will see a timer at the top of the screen near the active character’s HP. Using X-Factor will put your character into a neutral state, effectively canceling any action on them and allowing said character to immediately follow up on the previous input. This allows most characters to fire off two Hyper Combos by activating X-Factor at the end of the first Hyper Combo for an almost guaranteed kill.
X-Factor isn’t without its downfalls though. The technique can only be activated once per match, so be careful not to activate it on a round that you’re sure to lose. Certain characters will also benefit far more from a power-up than other characters will, so spending the move on a weaker character might result in a slight waste. You can check here for a list of bonuses each character receives from the move. Finally, the other player will have access to X-Factor just like you do, so be sure to always keep that in mind as a single buffed character can easily wipe out your entire team given the chance.