Crystal Dynamics has finally released their flagship game for the year – Marvel’s Avengers after a long wait. Even at its beta stage, the game has garnered both praises and criticisms from the testers. Now that it’s out for PS4, is it really worth the wait and the $60 price tag?
The fight opens with you donning multiple Avenger roles as you’re taken to some of the game’s more cinematic set-pieces. Throughout the experience, Marvel’s Avengers is such a sight to behold. Images and backgrounds pop up if you’re fortunate enough to own an HDR-compatible TV.
The character models deserve applause as well, which showcase just how much time and effort were put into creating this game. Each character can be visually customized using the various costumes you’ll find around as you play. And the roster has enough characters with customization abilities to keep you busy. You may encounter some rare glitches here and there but nothing off-putting.
If there’s one thing that needs addressing in the graphics department of the Marvel’s Avengers for PS4, it’s the framerate. Although it hits the targeted 30 frames-per-second most of the time, you’ll notice some struggle when many elements are being shown simultaneously on the screen. And knowing Marvel’s Avengers, it just won’t be complete without mayhem. If you own the PS4 Pro, framerate slowdowns will be very occasional. Let’s see how the PS5 can do more justice to this game soon.
Once you get the hang of the game’s controls (and there’s no steep learning curve here), you’re treated to hours and hours of globe-trotting campaign that is sufficiently filled with the sort of set-pieces, action, and quips anyone would expect from a typical Marvel flick. Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, Captain America, and Black Widow all get their fair share of the limelight, but the real star of this game is still Kamala Khan. You might find the game having too many apparent coincidences. Nevertheless, this instantly lovable protagonist quickly becomes the main driving force behind almost each story beat as well as the high-octane battles spread across the game. Crystal Dynamics loosely based the game’s story on the comic book plot, and similar to her debut, Ms. Marvel shows that she plays the lead role with sufficient emphasis.
Aside from the laudable characters and their matching personalities, it’s the combat system that will keep you coming back for more. Each character plays differently from one another, and each one has three unique skill trees, which means they can be customized to play different roles in achieving specific goals in the game. Each one also has the standard light, heavy, and ranged attacks but they’re not designed for third-person brawling and no button mashing to expect here. Takedowns are enough to kill enemies, combos are relatively easy to execute, and both damage and support abilities pretty much destroy whatever goes against the team.
Marvel’s Avengers was designed with genuinely deep mechanics that you can explore. It gives players the ability to personalize the build of their chosen superhero or just go crazy with quick-fire action. If you’ve always wanted to play Captain America and watch your shield bounce between enemies while dealing significant damage, this is the game for you. It may not beat the iconic Leviathan Axe of Kratos in the God of War, but it’s a very close second.
Even more impressive is how the people at Crystal Dynamics made each of the superheroes play and feel differently from one another. If you want someone to cover the skies and rain down terror, you have Iron Man with his Repulsors. If you want to go on stealth and take your buddies along, you have Black Widow with her Veil of Shadows ability. And if you need a tank and an army, well, you’ve got The Hulk. Captain America, Thor, and Kamala Khan play amidst these three extremes, and still, there’s enough variation between them to make sure they don’t play and feel the same.
You can only wish they did the same for enemy variety as it indeed was lacking. The AIM forces consist mainly of brainless robots that just seem to run towards untimely and inevitable demise. Some of them come at you with jet packs and some even carry shields as if these gadgets will keep them safe from the likes of Hulk and Thor. Their attacks are also pretty much similar, making them quite predictable.
Like an Avengers movie, this game rocks in the audio department. The top-notch voice work and action-packed soundtrack keep the whole game interesting. The superheroes are given life by very talented voice actors such as Laura Bailey, Troy Baker, and Nolan North, and they all delivered fantastic work.
Troy Baker might sound familiar, and if you’ve played enough games with voice overs, you’ll think he sounds like any other character he has played. Surprisingly, he did an excellent job on Bruce Banner and his bumbling personality. It’s challenging to match Robert Downey’s portrayal of Tony Stark’s stuck-up, witty persona, but Nolan North feels like the right man, or voice, for the job.
It will take the average player around 10 to 15 hours of visually-satisfying gameplay to finish Marvel’s Avengers, but it doesn’t have to end there. Marvel’s Avengers has a lot of replay value since there are at least 40 reward levels for each character, including emotes, costumes, items, and nameplates.
There are also different experiences to be had when you play through the missions using the other characters. You’ll have access to various secrets and areas that are available only to that particular superhero. For example, there’s a wall that only a specific character can break, and there are items to be had behind that obstacle.
The problem with this setup, however, is that it could get boring after some time.
Even if you’re not a fan of the Marvel Universe, Marvel’s Avengers should keep you interested. There are enough eye-candy, witty one-liners, and enemy-smashing to engage you for at least half a day. And if you want more, select another character and start from zero. Rinse and repeat.
Marvel’s Avengers – One Powerful Review
Even if you’re not a fan of the Marvel Universe, Marvel’s Avengers should keep you interested.
Superheroes play and feel differently from one another