Everyone is making Avengers games now
Square Enix’s new Avengers game joins NetEase’s Marvel Super War and Koei Tecmo’s Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3
The biggest names in gaming all want a piece of the franchise that seems like the surest thing in entertainment these days: Marvel superheroes. And nowhere is that happening more than in Asia.
The latest to join the fray is Japanese gaming company Square Enix, which unveiled a new Avengers-themed action-adventure game at this year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo, or E3. But they’re not the only ones to make a game about Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.
The game, titled Marvel’s Avengers, comes from the famed publisher behind iconic franchises such as Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts.
Two other Marvel games have also been getting some buzz recently. NetEase just announced its new MOBA game Marvel Super War two weeks ago. Koei Tecmo’s Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order, a Nintendo exclusive, is slated for release next month.
In fact, six out of the 13 Marvel games made in the past five years are by companies from Asia. These aren’t just any companies, either, but some of the biggest game makers in Japan, South Korea and China.
Japanese companies are focusing on consoles, where they excel. Japan’s Capcom, Koei Tecmo and Square Enix all have their own Marvel-themed console games.
Japanese companies might have a leg up on their Asian competition, though. They have a long history of working with Marvel, with a popular series of fighting games dating back all the way to 1994’s X-Men: Children of the Atom.
But are any of the games from this latest Marvel deluge any good? Well, at least two games have records of success. Capcom’s Marvel vs. Capcom franchise has long been a tournament fixture for fighting game fans. And Netmarble’s Marvel Future Fight has also become widely popular with mobile gamers.
Since the latest Square Enix announcement, gamers have shown mixed feelings online for Marvel’s Avengers. While some are excited by the game, others are not so pleased with the fact that the characters look different from their cinematic counterparts.
In China, where Avengers: Endgame has gobbled up a record-setting US$614 million at the box office, a gamer disappointed by the characters’ new looks wrote, “When your face is slightly ugly, you remember why superheroes wear masks.”
The shadow cast by the huge success of the latest Avengers film isn’t the only reason people feel iffy about the upcoming Marvel games. Some believe that companies are making games only to cash in on the franchise’s popularity without offering anything innovative.
In the case of Super War, one gamer wrote on Weibo, “I think this will be a flop. That’s possibly because I’m already tired of all the MOBA games on mobile.”
However things pan out for NetEase or the companies in South Korea or Japan, it’s a good time to be a gaming Marvel fan. If you’re looking to act out your superhero fantasies, there’s certainly no shortage of Marvel games to help you do it.