Black Panther, Cyclops, Deadpool, oh my! These characters and more are being brought to life in Gazillion Entertainment’s Marvel Heroes. Taking place in the iconic Marvel Universe, Marvel Heroes brings beloved characters to life with the purpose of stopping Doctor Doom from destroying the world. Players are able to start with one of the five starting heroes and then have the option to purchase their favorite Marvel Hero and additional costumes from the store for real money. With a storyline that keeps close to its comic book core and a combat system that constantly engages the players, Marvel Heroes is definitely a MMO to check out this summer season.
Gameplay and Controls
Marvel Heroes starts out a bit slow at first while you go through the first mission, but it quickly picks up as players progress through the different missions. Before players can start their first mission, they must choose their first hero. Gamers have the option of choosing between Daredevil (acrobatics and enhanced senses), Storm (lighting and hurricane wind powers), Hawkeye (archer with trick arrow shots), Scarlet Witch (magic and hexes), and Thing (brute strength). The first hero is free while additional heroes can either be purchased through the store or can be picked up as a drop.
Some players may find this game somewhat Diabo-esque with Marvel characters thrown in and that is because David Brevik helped develop this game. David Brevik is one of the genius designers behind Blizzard Entertainment’s original “Diablo” which impacted the gaming world with its ingenuity and addictive properties. The combat system in Marvel Heroes is fairly easy and quick since players can attack with both the mouse and the A, S, D, F, G and H keys which can all be set to the skills and actions of choice. Setting these hotkeys are another way that can help in the customization of the characters and play style. Items and experience/health/spirit orbs will drop on the ground after killing an enemy so players will need to make sure they pick them up, especially the orbs as those will fade over time until they disappear. When players do acquire another character and attempt to play them, they will be asked if they would like to start the story over again. This is a helpful quirk of the game because the level and XP of the characters in the player’s roster are not shared, so if the players wishes to have more than one high level character they will need to put time into each one.
Customization continues to play a huge role in Marvel Heroes as Gazillion implemented a three tree power system for each character. This power tree allows the player to select the powers they wish to use for each character, and these trees are different enough that they cater to every person’s playing style. In regards to the loot system, the game presents three options on what to do with all the sweet loot the players pick up. The player can equip the item, sell it, or donate the item to a vendor. Donating the items will help build reputation with the vendor and by doing so the vendor will start to carry better items for purchase. There is also a crafting NPC in the game who can help players forge useful items to help their character as they progress through the game.
Video and Audio
For a free-to-play MMO, Marvel Heroes put forth some extra time to make sure their graphics were polished before release. The game runs really smooth and the details found in the graphics help pull you right into the Marvel Universe. The drop-down camera angle works due to the fact that the programmers took the extra time to make sure that the walls and other structures do not block the game view. However this view can also feel a little restricting at times since it isn’t possible to see past the edges without moving the character over to the location. There are also a few instances of repeating animations and generic graphics found throughout the game. As for the sound, the developers did a great job keeping with the comic book mindset as the music and sound effects are very dramatic and capturing.
All in all this is a good game with great potential to be better in the next few months. Gazillion has done a great job with keeping the game very close to its comic book roots through detailed graphics, entrancing music and sounds, a realistic Marvel storyline, and a plethora of the Marvel characters we all grew up with. And while this game doesn’t quite feel like a homerun smash just yet, Gazillion left themselves with plenty of ways to continue to add to the game to keep players playing for a while to come.