My experiences with Massively Multiplayer Online (MMO) games are mixed, at best. Some, I have loved dearly, putting far too much time into them than I am willing to admit. Others are sordid affairs where I cannot uninstall the game fast enough. And then there are those that are not bad but nor are they good either. They merely exist on the vast plane of the MMO kingdom, content to live out their lives in mediocrity. Luckily for me, and the throngs of other Marvel fans, Marvel Heroes Omega (MHO) will be an MMO that I will be putting copious amounts of time into.
Marvel Heroes Omega is an MMO that feels more at home alongside the Marvel Ultimate Alliance (MUA) series than it would most other MMOs. The isometric view, easy to use controller scheme, lovely art style and the large roster of heroes all remind me of the MUA series and I could not be any happier. Unlike some MMOs with loose stories that need to be gathered from various bits of lore around the world, MHO has a dedicated story written by Brian Michael Bendis, a veteran comic book writer and artist, with a fully animated CGI opening as well as motion comic style scenes which spans a prologue and nine chapters with each chapter consisting of a couple of missions. But the story isn’t the only thing players can do There are also Operations, Patrols, Trials, and the various Headquarters to visit, including the famed Danger Room.
VIP Account Status – So, there has been an update to the Marvel Heroes Omega system that gives those that purchase bundles or Gs a little bit extra as a way of saying ‘thanks’ and I personally like it. The VIP Account Status is a recent addition that gives people VIP status if they purchase any of the packs or any amount of Gs through the Marketplace or in-game store. VIP Account Status gives a bevy of benefits including: Nightcrawler playable Hero unlocked (A VIP timed exclusive), a permanent +5% bonus experience and bonus credit boost, one Marvelous Loot Box, ten extra storage slots and five Eternity Splinters as a daily log in bonus. Now, this might not seem like much but the five ES every day you long in is a massive boon, giving you thirty five ES every week for just logging on. In a month of play you’ll earn 140 ES which, coupled with those that you earn while playing, can get you much closer to that Tier 2 or 3 character you might be eyeing.
Easy, intuitive controls – As stated earlier in this review, MHO feels a lot like MUA with how easy it is to grasp the controls. The left stick moves the character, clicking LS/L3 toggles travel mode (unlocked at level ten), right stick changes locked target while clicking RS/R3 puts up the map overlay, RT/R2 is the press and hold version of travel mode, RB/R1 toggles target lock, face buttons perform powers with A/X also being the interact button, LT/L2 is the power modifier button which changes the face buttons to the second set of skills when held, LB/L1 heals, and the D-Pad performs a variety of actions. All of this may look overwhelming but MHO offers an unwavering dedication to making the controls as simple as possible. New players and MMO veterans alike can pick up the game and master the controls as quickly as possible.
Large Roster – The roster boasts forty characters to currently choose from and many more still to come. MHO will be receiving everything the PC version has to offer including all of the current 52 characters, all future characters, as well as the playable villains. With a monumental roster of this size, there will be no shortage in variety of play styles or heroes to choose from. For example, Ghost Rider, a melee focused character with ranged abilities is dissimilar to Colossus, a melee focused character with summoning abilities. So finding the hero for you will mostly involve play testing each one. The game also gives you just enough Eternity Splinters to purchase one of the cheaper characters out the gate but, before you buy your first hero, I’d suggest playing with several to get a feel for how each plays.
The cost of characters in both Eternity Splinters and Gs along with their tiers are as follows:
Tier 1: 200 Eternity Splinters / 450 Gs
Angela, Black Widow, Captain Marvel, Hawkeye, Hulk, Kitty Pryde, Nova, and Squirrel Girl
Tier 2: 500 Eternity Splinters / 900 Gs
Ant-Man, Beast, Black Panther, Blade, Captain America, Colossus, Cyclops, Gambit, Iceman, Luke Cage, Magik, Moon Knight, Psylocke, Punisher, Scarlet Witch, She-Hulk, Star-Lord, Storm, and Thor
Tier 3: 750 Eternity Splinters / 1,350 Gs
Deadpool, Doctor Strange, Ghost Rider, Iron Man, Jean Grey, Rocket Raccoon, Spider-Man, and Wolverine
Pack Exclusive: Black Cat, War Machine
VIP Exclusive: Nightcrawler
“Hardcore” Exclusive: Iron Fist
Furthermore, each character has a set of powers, talents, and an ultimate that is unique to who they are. Not only do the characters play differently but they are all aesthetically individualistic too. Additionally, there are synergies. You have ten slots to fill with synergies which allows the player to apply synergy effects to characters with other characters who have reached at least level 25. The synergies effects vary per character meaning that certain characters are better when teamed up with certain other characters. Using characters with the “claw”, “melee”, and “cool-down” synergy powers are more useful to someone like Wolverine than they would be to Punisher. Beyond that is the Infinity System which, sadly, has not been unlocked at the time of this review. A roster this varied in both aesthetics and mechanics provides a source of fresh air to what would otherwise be a game that only requires the spamming of the attack button.
Bundles/Packs/Gs Are Exorbitant –This is a bit of an understatement.There are a myriad of bundles which start from $17 (as of the time of writing this) to a whopping $60. Noteworthy bundles include X-Men, the Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy, Spider-Man and Deadpool. Depending on the pack, the player will receive the corresponding characters, bonus costumes for those characters based on a certain universes or comic series (including the Marvel Cinematic Universe), boosts and G (MHO’s premium currency). Most of the extra items like hero costumes, consumables, upgrades to storage/inventory/ultimate power, and Marvelous loot boxes (which can hold loot box exclusive costumes for some heroes) can only be purchased though Gs which, as of right now, can only be acquired though the marketplace. Prices vary between five dollars for five hundred G all the way up to a one hundred dollar option which gives the player around eleven thousand five hundred G. But this is not the worst part of the bundles systems.
“Committed, hardcore players” – This is the worst part of the bundles system. The exact quote reads “Committed, hardcore players who purchase all five of the Marvel Heroes Omega Packs will receive a tremendous dedicated fan bonus that includes:
- Timed Exclusive Symbiote Spider-Man Costume
- Timed Exclusive Hero Iron Fist”
So, as of right now, the only way to get the exclusive hero and costume is to purchase around two hundred dollars worth of bundles.
Area Loading – Area loading is not the worst I have seen but is still a rather exasperating issue that seems to creep up here and there when dropping into new areas or quickly traversing from one area to the next on some of the larger maps. As the player approaches an area that is not loaded in, they slow to a crawl, cannot really escape from the sluggish movement that comes with the area loading, and can be injured by enemies that are not physically there. With the latest update this has been worked on a bit but, as of right now, it is still an issue which needs a permanent fix.
I will be honest here, some of the recent changes to Marvel Heroes Omega formula, as well as a few other choices made by the development team, I am not overly fond of. However, on the whole, they are not the types of changes that would discourage me from recommending this game to others. There are a few personal wishes I have for the game that I really, really, REALLY want but they in no way affect the scores for not being there. That includes an ever growing roster of members from groups such as the Inhumans, the Howling Commandos of S.H.I.E.L.D., Alpha Flight, and A.I.M. (Avengers Ideas Mechanics) to name a few. I would also like to be able to play as some of Marvel’s newer heroes like Agent Venom, White Tiger, and Silk, but even without these things, I really enjoyed my time with Marvel Heroes Omega and would recommend it to just about anyone, Marvel fan or not.
- Graphics - 78%78%
- Gameplay - 89%89%
- Controls - 93%93%
- Sound - 68%68%
- Replay Value - 72%72%
Marvel Heroes Omega was developed and published by Gazillion Entertainment. The game released on Xbox One [reviewed], PlayStation 4 and PC via Steam on June 30th, 2017. A press review copy was provided for The Hidden Levels. Many studios submit copies for site review but this is in no way factored into our review scores. Games are scored on their individual merits and our rating system is explained here.
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