Square Enix and Crystal Dynamics have combined to create one of the most enjoyable Super Hero games ever and one of the more enjoyable gaming experiences of 2020. In Marvel’s Avengers; players are introduced to Kamala Khan; a huge Avengers fan who is invited to be a Fan Fiction finalist and VIP at the massive A Day convention in San Francisco.
What starts as a celebration for the famed heroes soon turns tragic and the game picks up five years late in a world where the Avengers and Heroes are no more. A corporation known as AIM has acquired Stark Industries and maintains their version of law and order through specialized forces as robotic Synths. It is revealed that a reactor powered by a new source was to blame for the A Day disaster and it has created Inhumans as a result.
Kamala finds herself able to stretch her body and upon learning that things on A Day were not as the world has been set to believe sets off with AIM hot on her heels to unlock the clues and save the Avengers.
Along the way players will play as several of the iconic characters and will encounter group missions where players may be matched online or assigned A.I. companions.
Each characters has their own unique skills and timed special abilities which recharge after use and can be a game-changer as enemies become more numerous and difficult.
Each character also has their own combat moves and abilities ranging from ranged attacks to close quarters combat. While The Hulk can throw objects; he is better suited to get in close and mix things up. Iron Man while capable of delivering punches is better used flying and hovering and blasting everything he encounters.
Part of the joy of the game aside from the engaging story is learning new ways to defeat enemies including some team based body slams and other enjoyable moves.
Players are based on a Helicarrier and there are plenty of things to explore and naturally numerous cosmetics, upgrades, and such which players can obtain via looting or at many of the vendors they encounter.
Missions are assigned via a War Table and players have the option to select campaign specific missions or to mix in some side missions as well. Upon completion of the main game; players will have the opportunity to play more side and extra missions and can use a Quick Match open to play with other players as well.
There were a few glitches along the way on my PC build but while a bit annoying a first they became less frequent as the game went along. Some people may have issues with the look of the characters as Tony Stark for example looked to me more like a young Ben Affleck than Robert Downey Jr. but with so many interpretations of the characters over the years this is a minor issue as I was enveloped by the gameplay quickly.
Missions are enjoyable and the timed jump sequences are not unreasonable and players looking for a challenge will be able to adjust the game difficulty to a setting that best suits their style of play.
I first played the game at an invite only meeting during PAX West 2019 and after getting some gameplay time; the developers outlined to us some of the long-term plans for the game from new characters and cosmetics and so on. The game sets up further adventures well and I found myself enjoying the game and characters from starts to finish. The game does a great job establishing Kamala and building her character while giving players plenty of time as the classic Avengers and has more than a few nice surprises along the way.
4 stars out of 5
A Stadia Review by Joseph Saulnier
Marvel’s Avengers, which we’ll just call Avengers from here on out, has been out for a couple weeks now, and we’ve now had a chance to digest it. And boy am I suffering from a case of indigestion. There are many things that you have probably seen or heard about over the past few weeks, from crashes to long load times. And they’re all true. At least with my experience of the game on Stadia.
Before I proceed, I find it important to say that I was provided with a free copy of Avengers for the Stadia for the purposes of this review. Stadia is typically not my first console to purchase on, a lot of this has to do with failed promises and limited availability than anything to do with the games themselves. We won’t get into that here, but I was so hyped for the game that I was planning on purchasing for either the PS4 or PC in the future. You can see our own, Gareth Von Kallenbach’s take on the PS4 version of the game here, but unfortunately, we have a different opinion on the game as a whole.
First, the shining piece of the game for me personally was the story line and the game mechanics, but only for some characters. Despite the game itself being inherently doomed, EA’s Anthem has effectively ruined any other game that incorporates flight into an exo-suit. So Iron Man felt clumsy and a little unnatural compared to my experience there. The story follows (mostly) Kamala Khan (aka Miss Marvel) into a bleak landscape after a tragedy happens at A-Day a celebration. AIM, a corporation headed by one of the scientist’s injured on A-Day, have essentially become the governing force as they try to round up victims of the event, known as Inhumans. As you progress through the story and mount an offensive against AIM, you meet iconic Marvel characters from the Avengers along the way, who you will be able to play as through the story, complete with move sets complimentary of their unique powers and backgrounds.
I, along with Gareth, first played the game behind closed doors at PAX West 2019. I was excited about the game. Very. I waited a year in anticipation, only to be disappointed by a game plagued with crashes, artifacts in the graphics, and (possibly isolated to Stadia) bad visuals all around. One thing to note is that while the Stadia touts 4K gaming, what they do not tell you is that this is limited to the Chromecast Ultra. 1080p is the best you will get on a PC, which is very, very noticeable when moving between screens (something that Stadia is supposed to be good for). I kept getting crashes in the first real mission you partake on after setting up a base of operations on the downed carrier from A-Day. For Stadia, the only settings you can adjust for video quality is for the game to focus more on Frames Per Second or Resolution. But there was really no discernable difference between the two.
So crashes, and graphical issues have really soured my taste on the game. I understand a lot of this can be fixed, and I will be returning to the game. Especially since the game is setup to continue beyond the main single player campaign in a “games as a service” model. I have not had the opportunity to explore much of this part of the game yet, and so I will be updating my review in the coming weeks.
2 stars out of 5