SDCC ’19 Marvel Games panel recap: Everything we learned about Marvel’s Avengers, Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3 and more

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The Marvel Games panel at San Diego Comic-Con featured plenty of exciting announcements and reveals. Here are some of the highlights.

Video games, comic books and movies are all pretty much entwined at this point, so it’s no surprise that Marvel Games was a big player at San Diego Comic-Con. But unless you were in Hall H during the panel, you missed out on some pretty exciting stuff, including a first look at gameplay from Marvel’s Avengers. Thankfully, some of the announcements made their way online and recaps of gameplay footage shown were not in short supply.

The panel kicked off with a look at Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order, which is actually available exclusively for the Nintendo Switch as of today. If you were interested in the game, odds are you have already picked it up and are trying to stop Thanos and his Warmasters from gathering the Infinity Stones.

So with Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3 out today, the focus of the panel was to highlight new content coming to the game post-launch. As we already know, MUA3 has an Expansion Pass that promises new content inspired by the Marvel Knights, the Fantastic Four and the X-Men. In addition to the Expansion Pass, though, we will be getting some characters as part of free updates. And it starts on August 30 with the arrival of Cyclops and Colossus, two fan-favorite X-Men.

In addition to revealing these two X-Men, we got a first look at a few characters from the Marvel Knights DLC pack. Blade, Moon Knight, Punisher and Morbius are all slated to arrive as playable characters when it releases later this year.

Also briefly mentioned during the panel was Marvel Contest of Champions, Kabam’s mobile fighting game. The Summoner Showdown will culminate with nine remaining players duking it out at New York Comic-Con in October for the championship.

Then it was time for Marvel’s Iron Man VR, the intriguing new PlayStation VR title that’ll put you in the shoes of the billionaire, playboy, philanthropist. A behind-the-scenes featurette was shown with developers at Camouflaj discussing the flying portion of the game – which is arguably one of the most important aspects of playing as Iron Man.

From the flight itself to the immersive Iron Man HUD to the iconic weapons, the team explains how they nailed each. In doing so, we also get a look at some gameplay.

And finally, Marvel’s Avengers. The upcoming action-adventure game from Crystal Dynamics and Square Enix was easily the main attraction at San Diego Comic-Con with many fans looking forward to learning more about the game after a lackluster E3 showing.

As promised, fans were treated to the first public showing of gameplay, and it didn’t disappoint. Unfortunately, the footage was kept behind closed doors, meaning anyone who wasn’t in attendance for the panel will have to wait until Square Enix releases it. The publisher said after some more polish it will be made public for everyone after Gamescom in August. Until then, you’ll just have to scour the internet for recaps and possibly leaked footage (which I can confirm does exist).

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In any case, the footage shown was of the A-Day disaster, which essentially serves as the basis for the game’s story. We were shown footage of each of the different heroes. It seemed like a pretty straight forward action-adventure game and very on-rails. That’s not necessarily a bad thing though, as it appeared to be a very cinematic experience. And best of all, each of the different characters seemed to play differently with varying combat mechanics. Thor definitely looked like a ton of fun and Captain America looked pretty authentic to how he fights in the movies (despite having no relation to the Marvel Cinematic Universe).

Beyond gameplay, Crystal Dynamics showed off the customization aspect of Marvel’s Avengers. Following the launch of the game, this will be the primary money-maker as post-launch content, including characters, will be completely free. Some alternate outfits shown include Iron Man’s Original Sin Armor, Hulk’s Joe Fixit suit and plenty more inspired by Marvel’s 80-year history.

And because the purpose of the panel was to sell the audience on Marvel’s Avengers, it only makes sense that it ended with the reveal of a Collector’s Edition featuring a stunning (and probably expensive) 12″ statue of Captain America.

Marvel’s Avengers launches on May 15, 2020 for PS4, Xbox One, PC and Google Stadia.