I’ve put a little over 5 hours into the Avengers beta and I have very mixed feelings on it. Here’s what I think of it so far.
I’m a huge Marvel Ultimate Alliance fan. The Avengers has a bigger budget, is getting the triple-A treatment, and is supposed to be the best superhero game ever made. It’s not. During my first 3 hours, I crashed 5 times and was kicked back to the main menu 3 times because of connectivity issues. The PC port is almost broken and I don’t care if you’re one of those 5 people not having problems running this game on PC. The majority of us are having issues.
I didn’t hit 60 FPS a single time during my 5 hours of gameplay. This game stayed around the 45 mark for me and dipped as low as 3. This should not be the case. This game does not look that good. Everything from the character models to the world itself is serviceable. Don’t get me wrong certain areas can look really good, but the majority of the time I was left unimpressed and I was hoping the developers would’ve been more creative when designing these iconic characters and locations that they fight in.
Instead, they tried to make the game world look like the movies with a realistic setting that honestly doesn’t fit this style of game. My main issues with the game aren’t really the graphics even though they’re super disappointing. I would’ve preferred a more comic-book style look over super realistic, but it’s not a deal-breaker. The fact that this game plays like a free to play game does.
Avengers played exactly like Destiny 2 and Warframe. You start in your main hub, select a mission, fly to said mission, and complete it. There are even some Warframe objectives in the game. Do you know those Interception missions in Warframe? If you don’t I’ll explain. In Warframe, you’ll be tasked with defending points A, B, C, and D. If you hold all 4 points you get more points over if you only hold 2 of them. It’s the exact same thing in Avengers it’s just not done nearly as well. You also get stupidly short “defense” missions too and, once again, it’s exactly like Warframe. Instead of you playing as Frost or Mesa you’re playing as Black Widow and Iron Man.
The missions in this game are so bare-boned and uninspired and copied from more successful games that it’s sad. If you don’t feel like doing that you can do this game’s version of a strike. It’s a longer/harder mission than everything else that came before it and even has a boss fight at the end. Just like in Destiny 2! Which is also free to play. Add in the future microtransactions and you’ve got yourself a live service superhero game! But instead of it being free to play like Warframe and Destiny 2 it’ll cost you $60.
Ultimate Alliance 3 cost a fraction of what Avengers did to make and has better boss fights based on what I played in the beta. The gear system is also a straight rip from recent looter shooters. It has that dreadful score system that I wish would go away because it’s lazy. All I have to do is equip whatever has a higher number on it to get stronger. There’s no strategy involved whatsoever. The gear I find doesn’t even change my character’s appearance!
So how does the game actually play? Well… it’s all over the place. Iron Man is my favorite character to play because he’s the most versatile, but flying around as him does not feel good. I felt more like Iron Man in Anthem than I did as Iron Man in this game. Hulk is big and slow (when he’s actually pretty damn fast in the comics so that’s weird) so it was very disappointing that he felt so damn slow. As a matter of fact, everyone is too slow. Iron Man and Thor feel like they were only flying at half speed. This game is slow, stiff, and janky. The combat is not good. The lock-on is broken and doesn’t stay locked on to enemies. So I was forced to just run around and punch the wind until I got lucky enough to land a hit on something. The enemy variety is piss poor and I hope there are some surprises in the main game.
The biggest issue is none of the heroes feel strong. In Ultimate Alliance 3 I felt powerful. I felt like a superhero because I was using awesome powers and had synergy with my team. There’s none of that in Avengers and this is supposed to be the “better game”. There’s no team combos or passive bonuses for teaming up certain characters. You only get two powers to use and a third ultimate ability. Is this it?
Add in the fact that this game is getting MTX and is going to be treated as a live service game is something that just doesn’t sit right with me. I’m going to wait and see if it’s cosmetics only or if there’s going to be some pay to win shit thrown in there eventually. And how expensive is the MTX going to be? It’s also pretty dumb that just about all of the content will be locked to Sony’s shitty platform when there are two other ones out there.
Not everything is bad. The story seems like it could be genuinely good and the setpieces are incredible. The problem is I fucking hate Ms. Marvel and her stupid fangirling in almost every piece of dialogue she speaks. And the only great parts of the game are heavily scripted and has nothing to do with the actual gameplay itself. This game will need to do a lot to convince me that it’s not a complete dumpster fire.
This game is just lazy. Everything about it is pure laziness and has been copied/pasted from other successful games that have a live service model. Another thing is the PC port and half-assed ultra-wide support. The gameplay itself displays in ultra-wide resolution while the cutscenes and mission complete screen don’t. It’s really weird and stupid and has better be fixed before launch for those of you that are actually planning to support this shit.
I know what some idiots out there are going to say. “It’s only a beta!” or “the final product could be different!”. Guess what? This game launches on September 4th. How different are you expecting this game to be by then? All they did was give us a slice of the main game to play and I’m honestly glad they did. I know to stay away from this game and if you’re smart you will too.
The Avengers is a big disappointment. This was supposed to be the definitive superhero gaming experience. It’s not. It’s a far cry from that and I hope I’m proven wrong on release day. Maybe when this game drops to $20 a year from now (6 months on PC) I’ll consider it. Until then I’ll patiently wait for Rocksteady’s next game.