A strategist with superheroes? I’d love that!

Firaxis and Marvel: a videogame pairing that surprised many gamers, especially in the aftermath of the announcement of Marvel’s Midnight Sunsthe strategic RPG that comes to life right inside the world of super-heroic comics par excellence. For those who have turned up their noses at the news, it remains to be understood how fruitful this collaboration between the Marvel giant and the wizards of Firaxis has been, and this review really wants to analyze the results: will it have been a happy marriage?

Marvel’s Midnight Suns inspired by the series Rise of the Midnight Sonsbut instead of slavishly tracing the plot, he derives an independent story while maintaining the main narrative pillars: the resurrection of Lilith, the mother of all demons, and the army of Lilin loyal to her.

Instead, what is new is the protagonist Hunter, who will be brought back to life by the Avengers group as a last resort against this very powerful necromancer, as he is the only person who managed to defeat her centuries ago. The Firaxis guys have intelligently chosen to create a character detached from the Marvel contextand this allowed him to characterize and deepen not only Hunter himself, but also to give a personal reading to heroes like Captain America or Spider-Man who are already widely known to the general public.


Particularly, Marvel’s Midnight Suns gives the player and the fan of the MCU the opportunity to have a point of view of those who totally ignore a world that, in reality, is hyper-represented in the media around the globe. We will often find ourselves able to ask the hero of the moment how he managed to acquire certain powers and what it entailed to have that type of responsibility. Although there is no real psychological insight the dialogue writing leaves just enough to satisfy Hunter’s curiosity, and ours too.

In general, the screenplay is well constructed and skillfully unravels between the need to have a captivating main character, with his own growth path, and having to intertwine his deeds with far more cumbersome colleagues. In this regard, the developers have also included the element of exploring the surroundings of the Abbey, the central hub of the game, which allows the player to experience the character of Hunter intimately.

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Gameplay-wise, Marvel’s Midnight Suns provides for a simplification of the classical structures adopted by Firaxis itself: the developers have decided to eliminate the typical grids, introducing a system of cards to select based on field needs.

This last element represents a facilitation in visual terms, but it offers new strategic horizons not very dissimilar from the dynamics that we can find during a game of checkers or chess. Although the game offers a limited number of moves and the possibility of repechage, the system guarantees the possibility of executing more attacks, thanks to the interaction with scenario elements and the tactical use of some specific cards which grant, for example, ” refunds” of moves or grant additional Courage Points (which allow you to unleash particularly powerful special attacks).

Added to this is a frame system that regulates the affinities between the various characters at our disposaland allows you to chain additional attacks or upgrades of various kinds thanks to the management of “friendships” between the various Heroes.

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More generally, Firaxis has decided to manage the internal dynamics of the clash abandoning its traditional system of error percentage and coverage to favor greater mobility inside the battle arena but, in fact, it has opened the door to a balance aimed more at attack and at trying to find the ideally most effective combinations, guaranteeing a constant sensation of handling a handful of very powerful and fearless Heroes.

Indeed, in Marvel’s Midnight Suns it is possible to build and customize the deck of cards for each character, and we guarantee you that it will be really interesting to spend some time imagining every possible synergy based not only on the deck owned but also on the construction of the teams to be deployed. Furthermore, to prevent more experienced players from breaking the game within a few hours, some missions require the use of certain characters, so we will find ourselves forced to dedicate ourselves to strengthening each individual Hero.

Within this context the management of the hordes of enemies becomes an essential element of the game, but it reverberates on the boss fightswhich are particularly weakened in playful terms, in some ways easier and, in some situations, more banal than ordinary clashes.

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As anticipated, Marvel’s Midnight Suns it has a powerful role-playing component which takes place in moments of leisure and rest inside the Abbey.

Within its walls, the player can devote himself both to managing relationships with other characters and to upgrading and exploring the map, but although these moments are absolutely necessary for gameplay, the narrative conduction is occasionally repetitive and diluted. Having to constantly talk to every single component, with dialogues that often don’t shine in depth, or the activities to do together that remain relegated to very small cutscenes without any kind of interaction, at a certain point begin to weigh and contribute to artificially lengthen a longevity that is already of no small importance in itself.

Even the structuring of the missions does not help in terms of repetitiveness: although the developers have tried to shuffle the cards by diversifying the ways of winning the clashes, this variety diminishes over the hours, together with a variety of enemies that is not particularly brilliant.

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Essentially, Marvel’s Midnight Suns is a turn-based strategy game that only appears to be simplified in appearance, but instead turns out to be a title with solid playful foundationswhich can satisfy both the fan of Marvel adventures unaccustomed to the genre and the enthusiast interested in discovering the fruit of this strange joint venture carried out by Firaxis.

Although we appreciated the title both from the point of view of the narration, which appears to be sufficiently driving, and from that of the gameplay, which lends itself to the dynamics of a real chess game, Marvel’s Midnight Suns lends itself to a repetitiveness born of a not entirely well calculated longevity by the developers.

This doesn’t make us promote it with an even higher grade, but we heartily recommend Marvel’s Midnight Suns to anyone interested in the genre or even the presence of Marvel heroes.