After deep dives at E3 2019 and New York Comic-Con 2019, Square Enix made the decision in January 2020 to delay Marvel's Avengers from May to September 2020. Not much was heard about the game after that, but a War Table presentation on June 24, 2020 revealed a lot of new welcome information about the game.
Marvel's Avengers is a result of the deal struck between Marvel and Square Enix back in 2017 — and it will likely be the first of many games to result from this partnership. Reactions to the game's first trailer were mixed, with fans thrown by the voice performances and character design of the Avengers (likely because the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s take on the characters is so ingrained in our minds) and other fans picking apart the art design of the game.
There are many reservations about Square Enix’s Marvel’s Avengers, but the June 24 livestream cleared a lot of details up.
Here's everything we now know about the game.
When is the Marvel’s Avengers release date?
Marvel's Avengers will be released for on September 4, 2020 on current generation hardware and sometime this holiday season for next-generation consoles. This wasn't the original release date though. The game was supposed to come out on May 15, but Square Enix delayed the game.
"At Crystal Dynamics, our ambition has always been to deliver the ultimate Avengers gaming experience. In order to achieve that goal, we have made the difficult decision to move the release date of Marvel’s Avengers to September 4, 2020," a post regarding the delay explained. "We will spend this additional development time focusing on fine-tuning and polishing the game to the high standards our fans expect and deserve."
What is the plot of Marvel’s Avengers?
Marvel’s Avengers lays out a new Avengers-focused story for players. In the near future, an Avengers celebration called “Avengers Day” (A-Day) takes place in San Francisco, allowing the public to connect with the Avengers. A sudden attack on the Golden Gate Bridge forces the heroes to ditch the event and spring into action.
While Iron Man, Thor, Hulk, and Black Widow go to work saving civilians on the bridge, Captain America returns to the Avengers Helicarrier to fight off baddies trying to gain possession of an experimental energy source in the Avengers’ possession. The Avengers watch as the Helicarrier explodes and sinks into the water after Cap tries to get to the reactor powering the airship.
Taking a cue from Captain America: Civil War, it turns out the Avengers have been set up to look like the ones who staged the attack on the bridge and the Helicarrier. This leads to Avengers being outlawed, stripped of any official standing, and shunted off into the shadows, forbidden to use their powers.
Years later, Ms. Marvel is inspired to get them back together in order to stop a nefarious plot by AIM and M.O.D.O.K. to control the world under the guise of curing the Inhumans that the A-Day event spawned. The game will see players saving Inhumans, restoring their honor, and taking down M.O.D.O.K.
Post-launch, more story content will be added for free alongside new characters.
How does Marvel's Avengers play?
Marvel's Avengers finds a unique balance between third-person action games like Batman: Arkham Knight and live service titles like Destiny. Despite their varied powers, controls appear homogenized between all the playable characters, though each has special powers. They also have an in-depth skill tree with a variety of skills for players to customize their characters. Perks will also add various buffs and debuffs to heroes and enemies.
The game is loot- and gear-focused, with menus reminiscent of Destiny. There are a ton of outfits and emotes, many of which are based on classic comics. While there will be linear single-player Hero story, there are also more open-ended War Zone missions that can be played in co-op. When playing in co-op, two heroes can do a special finisher together when enemies are stunned.
What platforms will Marvel's Avengers on?
When the game was first revealed, Square Enix confirmed it would simultaneously be released for PC, PS4, Xbox One, and even Google Stadia. No Nintendo Switch version appears to be planned. On June 22, the publisher also confirmed that the enhanced next-gen version of the game will be released during the 2020 holiday season for those who wait a couple of extra months. Even better, the next-gen versions are free to those that bought it on a current-gen system.
Which heroes and villains are featured in Marvel’s Avengers?
At launch, six playable characters have been front and center: Captain America, Iron Man, Black Widow, The Hulk, Thor, and Ms. Marvel. With the exception of Ms. Marvel, it's a fairly straightforward team setup that MCU fans will recognize. That said, some other characters have been teased in the game's leaks and marketing.
This includes Hank Pym, Abomination, Taskmaster, Captain Marvel, Dum Dum Dugan, Maria Hill, and Nick Fury. There will no doubt be more villains and other characters than these in the game, but right now these are the characters you should expect.
Does Marvel’s Avengers tie into Marvel's Spider-Man?
Fans quickly picked up on the possibility of Marvel’s Avengers and PS4’s Spider-Man existing within the same universe thanks to a bit of key dialogue spoken in the Spider-Man game. During the game, players have the opportunity to take a picture of Stark Tower in Manhattan, prompting Spider-Man to remark, “Avengers Tower, so cool! Too bad they’re never around to use it. They’re on the west coast or something. Probably surfing.”
The fact that the “A-Day” trailer shows all of the Avengers based out of San Francisco suggests this could be a shared video game universe. There has been no official confirmation the games exist in a shared universe and it’s hard to imagine they would if only because the games are created and distributed by different companies. Marvel’s Avengers is the result of a collaboration between Crystal Dynamics, Marvel Entertainment, and Square Enix. Meanwhile, Spider-Man was developed by Insomniac Games and Sony Entertainment.
Even if there’s no official tie-in, it’s certainly interesting to think about, right?
Marvel’s Avengers will be released on Xbox One, PS4, Google Stadia, and PC September 4, 2020.