Though it was officially unveiled at D23 Expo, Marvel Powers United VR wasn’t made playable until a few days later at San Diego Comic-Con, and while it’s definitely rough around the edges, there’s a decent action game to be found here.
The teaser trailer at D23 made the game out to be a first-person beat-em-up experience, and that’s actually how it played. Featuring the likes of Rocket Raccoon, the Incredible Hulk, and Captain Marvel, the unveiling at D23 said the game would support up to four players, but strangely, there was no fourth hero shown in the trailer.
Of course, the fourth hero ended up being Deadpool, so it makes sense why he wasn’t shown at D23.
The plot was briefly covered at SDCC’s Marvel Games panel. Apparently the Masters of Evil get a cosmic cube and shatter the realm, so each one of the Masters rules their own domain. Stark Industries and SHIELD then join forces to have you help the inhuman dog Lockjaw teleport you to various, randomized areas to wreak havoc and fight evil.
I ended up using Captain Marvel, who’s more of a mid-range projectile fighter who can fire beams with her fists. Holding the trigger button also allows Captain Marvel do charge her beam, making it even more destructive. Pressing the A button allows you to fly around without the need of a jetpack like Rocket uses.
The shooting felt good, and the game utilizes a combo/streak system to aid in rating your performance at the end of the level. While I wasn’t the biggest help against the level’s boss, Ronan the Accuser, it was definitely fun taking the form of a Marvel hero. I just wish it was one I was more familiar with.
Being used to traditional first-person games like Battlefield and Overwatch, I found myself overly reliant on the right stick to shift my point of view, which really only ends up turning your character 45 degrees. That said, it was annoying having to tilt the stick twice to turn around. I kept forgetting that the most effective way to look around the area was to actually turn my head and look around, but that’s VR for you.
Most of the game’s issues are problems with the VR medium in general. This demo was definitely a lot of fun, but the biggest factor that made it enjoyable was the fact that you can play with other people. We don’t know whether there’ll be support for online play, so for now, it can only be assumed that if you want to play with friends, you’ll need friends who also have both the hardware and software.
Marvel Heroes United VR is being prepped for a 2018 release while the Oculus and Touch will be seeing a price drop which undoubtedly helps everyone, so the game is in the position to make waves. We’ll keep you updated as we learn more.