Marvel’s Avengers – Review
Follow Genre: Action RPG
Developer: Crystal Dynamics
Publisher: Square Enix
Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Tested on: PS4

Marvel’s Avengers – Review

Site Score
4.8
Good: Original story, Certain charm
Bad: Riddled with microtransactions, Bland, Repetitive, Feels off at times
User Score
1.8
(4 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 1.8/10 (4 votes cast)

Disney has been putting the Marvel superheroes on the map again with the cinematic universe they’re creating. It’s hard to imagine that the first Iron Man movie already dates back from 2008 and that things pretty much started off back then. Robert Downey Jr. is now basically the face of said iron-clad hero, and it’s hard to imagine someone else playing the role. This counts for all the different members of the Avengers and even the newer additions already have a certain face you’d link to them. We were quite surprised when the collaboration between Crystal Dynamics and Square Enix announced to us the new Avengers game. We were more surprised when we saw the members of the iconic superhero group have unrecognizable faces in this game release. It took some time getting used to that, only to fall into a very mediocre grind-fest.

Story

The story starts off celebrating the heroes known as the Avengers. In this game, it’s only the core members, Captain America, The Hulk, Black Widow, Iron Man and Thor that are actually representing the superhero troupe. You see Kamala Khan, who won a writing contest and thus was invited to meet the Avengers in person. She is having the time of her life until the party gets crashed by terrorists led by Taskmaster. Many lives are lost, and the Avengers get blamed for endangering the general populace. Heroes become shunned icons of the past, and a new corporation, A.I.M. takes up the mantle of defending the world and is actively hunting down inhumans. These inhumans are just people with superpowers, and they are considered to be ill, and A.I.M. wants to ‘cure’ them.

Five years pass, and you, Kamala, start looking for the Avengers after you discover a certain message on a chat-board. Sadly, this also puts you on A.I.M.’s radar, and make you a hunted target as well. You eventually find Bruce Banner, and uncover certain parts of the truth, that the A-Day tragedy was not caused by the Avengers, or that they should not be blamed for it.

The story progresses at a steady pace, and the game puts you in the shoes of all the heroes available. The original plot is nice, but it stays somewhat superficial for a long time, throwing you in search and locate missions for a long while.

Graphics

We’ll start off with the obvious elephant in the room, and that’s that this iteration of the members of the Avengers does not look like the ones we’ve come to know and love over more than a decade. The faces feel like cheap stand-ins compared to the cast that has now become the standard for the franchise. It doesn’t mean things look bad, but it just feels off. We reckon it was pretty much impossible to pay for the likeness (and voice acting) of the original cast, but even so, it irks you the entire time.

The environments and the overall look of the game make you feel like everything is well done and very detailed. The environments are nicely handled, there are different backdrops, there is a proper amount of clutter, but then after a while, even on a PS4 Pro, you start notice texture popping, reused assets, no environmental damage and camera bugs that start to annoy you greatly. You are playing a game, with explosive superheroes, but only tiny parts of your environment take damage. You run closer to buildings, only to see them pop into place or have walls properly render. You then always see the same scratch marks on walls and structures. This is, of course, to make sure you know you can climb on them, but even so, a bit of variation would have been nice. Last but not least, your camera gets seizures from time to time, making the game spin out of control, and we don’t know why this keeps happening.

Sound

The sound design is fairly okay. The soundtrack is decent, but will not be of heroic proportions. You’ll have the proper backdrop for the cinematics, as well as the repetitive combat the game throws at you. The sound effects sound legit and are in tune with the effects we hear in the movies.

As expected for a rather theatrical game such as this, the characters are properly voiced. Once again, things feel a bit off, simply because we already associate certain people with the roles of the Avengers. This doesn’t mean that the cast doesn’t do a proper job; they manage, especially considering the actors they go up against. The only voice that felt like it wasn’t a proper fit was the one of Thor.

Gameplay

Marvel’s Avengers is classified as an Action RPG, in which you beat up big groups of enemies. The game does not have any real puzzle elements, safe for running a bit back and forth in your headquarters, triggering some switches and using some of the HQ’s infrastructure. Some missions also require you to find switches to open certain things, but for the most part, you’ll be running around with one of the superheroes beating your enemies to a pulp.

The biggest issue with the game is already clear after ten minutes of actual gameplay. You have all these shiny heroes to play with (admittedly they all look a bit gritty at the beginning of the campaign), who are pretty much known to every living soul on the planet. You expect them to have the powers they have in the movies or series, and they do to a certain extent. Sadly, they never pack a punch, or their signature skills don’t really impress or do anything special. As you go, you’ll notice that every hero is basically the same character model over and over again, with a different skin, and the same set of abilities. Each hero has its normal attacks, its ranged attack and some special skills. These all boil down to the same thing, even if some can fly, rather than just walk and jump around.

After the campaign, you can opt to play the actual online mode of the game, which is almost the same as the campaign, without any story value. You can just pick a mission, play it with other people and just grind until you are pleased. There is no real incentive to keep playing, but we reckon this is the developer’s idea of endgame content.

The game is riddled with microtransactions and very expensive ones at that. While these are just cosmetic upgrades, they are very expensive, and will still lure in (younger) gamers to buy stuff they don’t actually need. It would have been more fun to be able to grind for them, rather than to buy them outright. At this point in time, the Iron Man items in the store would cost you an additional 90 Euros, which is absolutely ridiculous. You could then easily spend another 600 Euros on a game that already cost you the price of a triple-A title.

Conclusion

Marvel’s Avengers is a step to mediocrity for the franchise. The game feels like it’s riddled with microtransactions for people to buy their favorite outfits, while at the same time offering you a very barebones action RPG experience. Sure, the game can be somewhat entertaining, and the original story does have some charm, but it never becomes more than that: ‘somewhat entertaining with some charm’. If you can buy this one with a heavy discount, you might have some fun with it, but as a full-priced release, with very expensive microtransactions for fancy costumes, it’s not really worth getting. It’s not extremely bad, but there are many other fun games on the market for you to get first.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 1.8/10 (4 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
Marvel's Avengers - Review, 1.8 out of 10 based on 4 ratings
Ibuki
Ibuki


Aspiring ninja.

No Comments

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.