2K and Firaxis launched a short teaser of Marvel’s Midnight Suns earlier in the week. Today, we have a much bigger chunk of gameplay showing how the cards and battle system work, along with hints about the campaign structure.
The almost-seven minute long deep dive shows a good amount of what most of the superheroes available can do, what upgrades are available and some of the narrative choices that you’ll have. There’s a little look at your customisable hero too. It’s a bit threadbare, but you typically don’t get any customisations with Marvel games, and there’s plenty of opportunity for more options to be added in between now and March next year.
The Hunter — that’s you — is the only dark power known to have ever defeated Lilith. That’s part of why you’ll have all the cosmetic customisations, but you’ll also get plenty of X-Men, runaways, Avengers and other heroes to mess around with.
The trailer also gave us a clearer look at the card-based battling system. You select a crew of three heroes before each mission, and those heroes will randomly be given a set of abilities each turn. You’ll be able to upgrade skills throughout the course of the game, and characters’ equipment can be upgraded between missions through Midnight Suns‘ hub area. You can also manage your deck of cards for your heroes before launching, as well as any combo cards you might have from your particular crew.
Shots of the UI show that players can play a certain amount of cards per turn, while also having access to a single move, items (if available or equipped) and a certain amount of card redraws. The tactical combat focuses heavily on the environment, with a lot of attacks having radius, chain or knockback effects that can be used to minimise, debuff, damage or eliminate foes on the field.
You’ll be able to unlock combos between certain heroes, indicating that Midnight Suns might favour some compositions over others. You’ll also have an in-game credits currency that can purchase upgrades, like a T.H.R.E.A.T. training room that lets you “launch endless combat missions” to farm XP and toy with hero skills and combinations.
There’s a war room table — not unlike Marvel’s Avengers or Dragon Age: Inquisition — and what appears to be crafting materials in the form of heroic, attack and skill essences. One mission showed from the war table offered an artifact and what looked like materials as an award.
Interestingly, there also appears to be the option to have Midnight Suns simulate the result of a mission, according to this UI prompt:
You can watch the trailer in full below. Firaxis are some of the best in the business — hell, they set the benchmark really — when it comes to tactical combat. So I’m not surprised that everything about Midnight Suns looks really well thought out. I’m curious to know what their ideas are for post-game or end-game content are, especially in a universe as expandable as Marvel. Hydra might be done and dusted by the time Midnight Suns is over, but what would some XCOM style battles against Thanos be like?
Marvel’s Midnight Suns launches in March 22 for PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox, and Xbox Series X/S consoles.