WELCOME!!! I know, it’s been a minute. Many minutes. A few things transpired here and there, but let’s talk about December 2nd… Many moons ago, ya boy reviewed XCOM 2 for the Xbox One and absolutely loved it. Firaxis turned me into a huge fan of theirs with the first game, XCOM: Enemy Unknown (and its “1.5” follow up, Enemy Within). This is thing “A” that I love.
Thing “B” is Marvel. Just like millions, I’m a massive Marvel geek. The comics, PS5 Spidey, the movies, the shows, the meh Marvel’s Avengers game, and even some of the shitty mobile games drip feed it all into my veins. Disney…
I mention this because the gaming gods and Firaxis are combining A and B to give us Marvel’s Midnight Suns. A card-based strategy game where you take a 3-person squad up against FORCES MOST FOUL!
The game borrows elements from roguelike card strategy stalwarts like Slay the Spire and Monster Train in that you can collect and edit different cards and decks for each character. From there, they can be upgraded as you level up and re-rolled at the forge. You’ll be able to create different decks for different situations, which I can greatly appreciate considering that the developers have confirmed New Game+ and a staggering 8 difficulty levels. It’s also been revealed recently that some mid-level bosses (Crossbones and Sabretooth confirmed so far) can just show up unexpectedly… That shouldn’t be stressful at all.
Also, my nerdy ass will absolutely be making different “armor decks” for Iron Man.
The actual mission layouts will be very familiar to XCOM fans, though movement is a lot less restricted. Gone is the square grid movement that’s so prevalent in the strategy genre. I’m also hoping they’re bringing their knack for ruthless enemy AI at the higher difficulty levels.
An interesting aspect to the game that Firaxis has added is relationship building. In between missions, you get to further your bonds with certain teammates. Spar with Blade, hang out with Nico, study with Dr. Strange; you get the idea. Doing so will level up cards, unlock new perks, mods, etc. You won’t be able to do so with everyone, so you’ll want to put some thought into who you like to use and your team compositions.
In addition to growing closer to your team, you should use the downtime to explore the Abbey (your HQ, not the one in Downtown). Doing so will reward you with lore pieces, certain unlocks, mission items, and Easter eggs. We nerds sure do love our Easter eggs.
I still haven’t mentioned who the Midnight Suns are, have I? Well, you’ve got : Spider-Man, Captain America, Iron Man, Wolverine, Captain Marvel, Dr. Strange, Sister Grimm, Magik, Scarlett Witch, Ghost Rider, and Blade.
There’s also The Hunter, an original hero (the protagonist) that you get to model after yourself. Or Roman Reigns, Conan O’Brien, Billie Eilish, Zendaya? I don’t know. Do you.
DLC will bring an additional four heroes. Each with their own story: Venom, Morbius, Deadpool, and Storm.
As excited as I am, it feels odd to not point out a concern or something that I’m not feeling great about, but thankfully it’s not a lot and one is just visual:
– The actual Midnight Suns team costumes? Kinda hate them. Most of the black and gold getups look gaudy and weird. Highly doubt I’ll touch them all.
– Haven’t seen terrain elevation differences in any of the gameplay footage I’ve seen…at all. I love card roguelikes, so I’m sure I’ll still love it; but as an XCOM guy, it’s a weird thing to see.
– No Moon Knight? Are you serious? For the love of Konshu…
Hope this helps you decide if you want to check it out! One more thing, though. There’s one unannounced hero that’s unlocked after you beat the game… Keep scrolling down to find out who it is, since it’s been leaked (of course).
You sure? SNIKT!
How about we BLAZE it up?
They actually let the monstrous, green cat out of the bag on Twitter this Tuesday… After you beat the game, you get Big Green himself. Thankfully you won’t have to use him with this look.