Marvel’s Midnight Suns is Firaxis’ next turn-based strategy game, which received its world-premiere CGI reveal last week. Now, the development team behind the massively popular XCOM franchise revealed the game’s full-blown gameplay premiere on Wednesday, framing the upcoming game as the MCU’ take on XCOM. You can watch the six-minute trailer below:
The official extended gameplay trailer to Marvel’s Midnight Suns was dropped on YouTube on Wednesday and featured six minutes of heavily edited gameplay. Besides combat, the trailer explains the upcoming game’s basic narrative, which seems based on the fictional superhero team Midnight Sons. Marvel’s Midnight Suns centers on Lilith, an ancient demon goddess who has been resurrected by Hydra and will stop at nothing to fulfill a prophecy of bringing back her master (supposedly Lucifer, or Mephisto) to Earth. In response to the demonic threat, superheroes reform Midnight Sons, bringing new heroes to the fold – including the Avengers.
With the basic premise of the game explained throughout the trailer, gameplay aspects seem to rely heavily on turn-based combat, with a highly customizable tactical battle system that rewards clever thinking – turning Midnight Suns into a card-battling turn-based combat game. It will feature 12 playable heroes at launch, including the Avengers and X-Men, with more heroes coming after launch, probably through DLCs, expansions, and patches, similar to Marvel’s Avengers video game. Each of these heroes will feature unique proprietary abilities categorized in typical RPG classes, with damage dealers and healers. Additionally, Marvel’s Midnight Suns will allow players to compose three-heroes teams, which could be taken into battle, with the fourth character being the player’s “avatar.”
Besides featuring three player-selected heroes, players will take on the role of a centuries-old hero known as The Hunter – a child of Lilith who has defeated her in the past. The Hunter (no, not the Jimmy Kimmel’s version) will be a fully customizable character that will supposedly act as a healer/damage dealer who channels light power, or an extra damage dealer channeling dark energies which incur a cost on the Hunter and the rest of the player’s team.
Abilities within Marvel’s Midnight Suns manifest as cards, which can be expanded and upgraded through the game – though they are randomly selected at the start of combat. Despite sounding chaotic, this offers a vast array of tactical choices capable of interacting with the environment, e.g., tossing enemies off ledges, or on spikes, etc.
When it comes to the environment, Firaxis used iconic Marvel locations in-game, like the Avengers Tower, Hydra headquarters, Dormamu’s dimension, Doctor Strange’s Sanctum Sanctorum, and many others. Abbey is the new, cathedral-like location that serves as the player’s base of operation and a lounge for the superheroes – many of which can be seen socializing amongst themselves. As per the trailer, the maps in Marvel’s Midnight Suns are smaller than what we’ve seen in the XCOM franchise, with the user interface vanishing to highlight the action sequences.
When it comes to in-game monetization through microtransactions, Firaxis announced cosmetic upgrades only, which won’t affect the gameplay balance in any way. However, we guess they took a hint aimed at Microsoft, Blizzard, Niantic, and others when it comes to microtransactions – parents can now rest easy knowing that Marvel’s Midnight Suns has no loot boxes. The game is set to launch on all prominent gaming platforms, including PlayStation 4 and 5, Xbox One and Series X/S, Nintendo Switch, and PC.