As someone who is a longtime fan of Marvel Comics and the Marvel Cinematic Universe, I was quite happy to hear the announcement that Marvel was getting back into video games that weren’t Marvel Vs Capcom. On the PlayStation side of things, Insomniac Games would be releasing Marvel’s Spider-Man, which received critical acclaim on the PS4 and PS4 Pro. Now we have Iron Man VR being developed by Camouflaj LLC for PSVR, and we have Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order being developed by Koei Tecmo’s Team Ninja for the Nintendo Switch. Out of all the titles we know about, there’s still one that fans have been waiting to hear information on … The Avengers Project from Square Enix.
We’ve heard almost nothing on the game since it was announced at E3 in 2017 — until recently. All we know so far is that there’s a “multi-year, multi-game partnership” between Square Enix and Marvel … So The Avengers won’t be the only Marvel game you’ll see from Square Enix then. On top of that, Crystal Dynamics (the studio behind the recent batch of Tomb Raider games) is developing the game. Looking at what I assume is a premature listing for a Marvel’s Avengers panel at E3 Coliseum reveals more about the game than I actually expected … assuming the information is all correct (it’s posted on the official E3 website which tells me that it strongly is). From this, we have learned that the game will be both singleplayer and co-op, with up to four players teaming together, and that it’s considered “the defining Avengers game experience.”
According to the description:
“Embrace your powers and join key members of the development team at Crystal Dynamics and the creative team at Marvel Games as they talk exclusively about the upcoming Marvel’s Avengers. This is the defining Avengers gaming experience: an epic action-adventure that combines cinematic storytelling with continuous single-player and co-operative gameplay. Moderated by Andrea Rene, assemble in teams up to four players, master extraordinary abilities, customize your heroes to fit your playstyle, and combine powers to defend an ever-expanding world under constant threat.”
Square Enix has its own E3 conference again this year on Monday, June 10th at 6 PM PT, and we now know that’s when Marvel’s Avengers game will be fully revealed. The game will also feature at the E3 Coliseum on the following day, according to Geoff Keighley. On the game’s official Twitter account, the name “Marvel’s Avengers” was used which suggests that’s probably the name of the game … unless they unveil a different or sub-name at the show.
With the reveal of the original teaser trailer in 2017, the description said: “More details on The Avengers Project and other games will be announced in 2018.” Start your speculation now on what we’ll see … Gameplay? Release date? A neat CG trailer for a game that’s years away?
Here’s how the story for Marvel’s Avengers was described back in January 2017, as part of the trailer description. “The Avengers Project is being designed for gamers worldwide and will be packed with all the characters, environments, and iconic moments that have thrilled longtime fans of the franchise. Featuring a completely original story, it will introduce a universe gamers can play in for years to come.”
Marvel made a big song and dance on the talent involved with the development of The Avengers game back in 2018, and (again) reiterated the point about “a completely new and original story.” That’s when it was revealed that Shaun Escayg, who worked on Uncharted and The Last of Us games at Naughty Dog, will be the game’s creative director. In the same post, there was some hint towards what the game will actually be about.
“We’re committed to delivering an incredible, completely original Avengers experience to our gamers, and that means we are always looking to add amazing developers to our existing best in class studio talent,” said Scot Amos, Crystal Dynamics’ co-head of the studio at Crystal Dynamics, as part of Marvel’s news blast. “As development progresses, our studio continues to grow. The tremendous progress we’ve made on The Avengers Project further drives us toward our goal of crafting something all Marvel fans will be proud of and will play for years to come. We can’t wait to show you what we mean in the future.”
“Play for years to come” … Could this be another live-service game with online elements? It would make sense to have a multiplayer aspect to The Avengers game. Granted, I’m not a fan of those kind of games but I am willing to give it a try if that’s what the studio is going for.
So, what kind of game will it be? The E3 Coliseum listing tells us a lot on this front: it’s a continuously singleplayer and co-op action-adventure game, with what sounds like a few RPG elements. You will be able to “master extraordinary abilities, customize your heroes to fit your playstyle and combine powers,” which all sound kind of RPG-ish. Mention is also made of an “ever-expanding world under constant threat.” Could this be another entry on the growing list of ‘live-service games? A single player, action-adventure RPG that can be played online with friends? We’ll just have to wait and see when Square Enix takes the stage at E3 in less than two weeks!