Marvel’s Midnight Suns is free right now and you should get it (even on Epic)

Enlarge / All of these thugs are targeting Captain America, as shown by the icons above their heads. Good. That’s how he likes it. (No, really, it’s a tank, that’s it.)


I completely understand why people don’t want multiple game launchers on their PC. Steam is the default and good enough for (apparently) most people. It is not your job to impose competition in the market. You want to start and play games you enjoy, like most of us.

So when I tell you that Marvel Midnight Suns is a game worth registering, installing and using Epic Games Launcher, I am choosing my opportunity carefully. For the price of giving Epic your email (or a proxy/relay version, like Duck), or simply logging in again, you can play a fun, fresh, and engaging turn-based strategy game, complete with positioning and deck-building tactics. , for zero dollars. . Even if you feel completely debilitated by Marvel right now, like most of us, I assure you that this slice of Marvel is more like the comics and less like the overexposed current movies. Ask the guy who did it.

Tactical deck building is fun

The game was highly regarded by most critics, but it was not a financial success when it released in December 2022, or at least it was “disappointing.” Why a game succeeds or fails is a combination of many factors, but one of them was probably that the game was trying something new. It wasn’t alone X-COM with Doctor Strange. he had some fire emblem relationship building and base exploration, but he also had cards. The cards are mixed with chain building, positional and turn-based strategy, but some people apparently saw the cards and walked away.

“Before, I’ve never had an experience where people have expressed disappointment before playing,” said Jake Solomon, the now-defunct director of midnight suns and xcom, said Rock Paper Shotgun in an interview. “As we told people from the beginning, it is not an accident, we do not share a single mechanic with xcom. …And so I think when people play it, they understand it, it’s a lot of fun and you can get as addicted to it as possible. xcom. But I also totally get it when people look at the images that come up and say, ‘What the fuck is that?’ Are those… are those cards? Cards!?’ So yeah, I guess I can sympathize with people for that reason.”

Friends, cards are fun. The resources you collect go towards upgrading your cards, which are all your moves in combat. There are strategies inherent to each character, such as chaining attacks, moving enemies through portals, area-of-effect attacks, and the like. But then you can minimize the heroes’ abilities as much as possible, focus on your favorite heroes, and laugh when things go terribly wrong or ridiculously in your favor.

You don’t build a single platform in midnight suns, you build a whole team of small decks. As a designer for deckbuilder cobalt core told Ars, deck building puts you “in this space where no two turns are ever exactly the same, so players can keep discovering new optimal solutions. But while the options are always huge, they’re made up of pretty simple building blocks.” “. , so it’s not overwhelming.”

The other big change since xcom and similar games is a rich use of both a destructible environment and ragdoll enemies. Having Magik set up a portal, then Iron Man throws a thug through it, and then watching that enemy fly through the exit portal into an overcharged battery that explodes, knocking out two more bad guys, is a great feeling.

Even devoted Marvel fans will find some characters they've never delved into before, like Nico Minoru from the Midnight Suns team.

Even devoted Marvel fans will find some characters they’ve never delved into before, like Nico Minoru from the Midnight Suns team.


Marvel comics, not Marvel movie stars

What usually happens between missions is talking. You find and talk to your teammates, you respond to what they say, you go on hikes with them. There comes the point where you can join a book club with Captain America, Blade, Captain Marvel, and, reluctantly, Wolverine.

It may be a bit much, but the dialogue and voice acting are well done in my opinion. In some comic book games, but also movies, the lack of rights to an actor’s face can be difficult to overcome, if you are used to seeing them in that superhero outfit. midnight suns has pretty close approximations of several alternate heroes or faces that didn’t bother me after the first few sightings. And if none of the world-building or making friends stuff is for you, you can hold down a button and move on to more thug-bashing.

Solomon noted in that same RPS interview that he is a “really, really, like a super Marvel Comics nerd.” That’s reflected in how each character is framed, how they interact, and their motivations. There’s still a good bit of Marvel’s modern joke quotient, but it’s passable. Dating friends with the Scarlet Witch may not be something you’re looking for in your turn-based tactics, but give it a try. It gives you a certain motivation to see your heroes succeed and work together.

Epic has the base midnight suns free game until June 13 at 11 a.m. You can add some DLC if you want, with new characters like Storm, Venom, Morbius, and Deadpool (if _really_ you’re okay with joking). You will also see various costumes and in-game currencies available for sale, but none of them are necessary to play and succeed in the game. If you’re enjoying the game and want it to run a little faster, consider disabling the 2K launcher in the Epic Games version.

Many games are released every day and some of them end up being games that I wish I had written about and recommended. midnight suns It has long resided in that headspace for me. For the price of zero dollars, plus any level of commitment required to download the Epic Store, it’s an easy game to recommend.

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