Company Square enix invited journalists to a closed beta Marvel’s Avengers – action adventure from studios Crystal dynamics and Eidos Montréal… We were able to test the game and are in a hurry to share our first impressions.
Marvel’s Avengers is a third-person co-op action game where players can take control of heroes from the Avengers team. In the beta, the developers offered us to go through several story missions and side activities.
The story begins when the Avengers are urged to stop Taskmaster, who, having seized Tony Stark’s weapon, is attacking New York. However, the heroes do not have time to cope with the task. Half of the city is destroyed, the SHIELD ship is blown up, the Avengers are recognized as dangerous to society and are judged.
At the same time, in New York, a strange gas begins to spray through the streets, giving superpower to the inhabitants of the metropolis inhaling it. Mass hysteria and chaos begins. In order to somehow restore the normal course of life, the AIM corporation appears, which proposes to oppose powerful robots to supermen. However, it does not inspire confidence, since it turns out that it is its representatives who are involved in the gas dispersion.
One of those who gain superpowers is Kamala Khan, today also known as Miss Marvel. Together with Bruce Banner, she decides to reassemble the Avengers team.
Kamala gained the ability of “elasticity”. Stretching and increasing the size of her limbs, she deals powerful blows to enemies. In the introductory version shown to the journalists, the plot is presented mainly on her behalf, although on missions they give to take control of any unlocked characters. Khan in this case can act as a partner.
After the introductory part, where players are introduced to the main heroes of the squad, Thor, Iron Man, Hulk, Black Widow and Captain America, access to the Avengers ship, which becomes the main hub location, opens. From here, the available missions on the map are selected, after which the ship delivers the characters to the desired point.
In addition to story missions, the game has Landing Zones and Military Missions. The former are short races with one single goal, like exterminating the elite AIM fighters or capturing important corporation territory, while the latter are more complex tasks that can take anywhere from ten minutes to two hours of real time in co-op with friends or bots. …
The gameplay of Marvel’s Avengers borrows a formula from the Batman Arkham series and recent Insomniac Games’ Spider-Man. During the battle, combo chains accumulate, which recharge the skills of the heroes, and each character also has a rage mode, which allows him to become invulnerable for a short time and do more damage. A powerful ultimate also fills up periodically.
The strong point of the game is the feeling of the characters. They all have unique abilities and fighting techniques. For example, the Hulk can take opponents in hand and fight with them, Iron Man flies and quickly switches from melee to ranged combat, Thor can throw a hammer, Black Widow has counterattacking moves, and Captain America builds a combo with a shield throw.
Each character in the game has its own branch of skills, where new combos or passive abilities are unlocked. Also, as you progress through the missions, special items are found that are equipped for the heroes. They directly affect the characteristics.
So, in the beta version, a mission in a snowy location was available. Enemies here could freeze heroes with special punches. However, if you put on things with the effect of resistance to cold, then fighting opponents will become much easier.
Items are conventionally divided into categories and can affect the amount of health, damage done, or offer other special qualities. They are also given to pump for the resources collected on tasks.
During missions, the Avengers are asked to complete a variety of tasks. They range from exterminating waves of enemies by capturing a point to finding and destroying special items and battles with mini-bosses. In the beta, we also encountered one story boss – familiar to fans of the universe from the comics. Let’s not spoil, but this battle was remembered for a very spectacular production.
Entertainment in general is one of the strengths of the Marvel’s Avengers beta. The degree of the epic did not fall for a second, the spectacular adrenaline action, reminiscent of blockbuster films, literally constantly continued. Moreover, during battles, and during cutscenes, and during moments with QTE.
Marvel’s Avengers boasts very decent graphics. Of course, the characters are very remotely similar to the actors from the films, but this is perhaps the only “minus” of the visual component of the game. The rest of the picture is juicy and modern, the special effects look very impressive.
The sound design is also at a high level, each of the characters is distinguished by some trait. Playing as the Hulk, we constantly hear his frantic roar, the gameplay for Thor stands out with a characteristic roar from the hammer blow, and the passage for Iron Man is emphasized by the sounds of shooting from blasters built into his armor.
During our acquaintance with the beta, we also got the impression that the developers managed to involve in the voice acting some actors who gave their voices to the characters in the films in Russian dubbing. In any case, Thor and Captain America in this regard were very similar to their counterparts from the films, which cannot be said about Iron Man and Black Widow.
Square Enix continues to emphasize that co-op multiplayer is a cornerstone of Marvel’s Avengers. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to play online – we were playing missions with bots, which seemed to be very adequate helpers in battle.
In beta, the game leaves positive emotions. There are minor bugs that should be fixed for the release, but already now the project is being played normally and pleasantly surprises with the setting. We spent several hours behind the new “Avengers” and we were not tired, but still the developers presented only a very small part of the content for review, so questions remain, especially given that Marvel’s Avengers are going to support for a long time. Will Crystal Dynamics and Eidos Montréal be able to diversify the side activities as much as possible so that the gameplay does not get boring and is able to keep the players’ attention for a long time? How interesting will the story be? We will be able to find out only after the release.
Author: Alexey Sarafanov (ASarafanov)
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