Marvel’s Midnight Suns is the latest game from the Marvel universe, developed by 2K and developed by Firaxis Games (XCOM 2) in cooperation with Marvel Games. The game faced a few delays after being announced in 2021, but now it’s finally here! So is Midnight Suns worth your time, and is it a true Marvel experience?
[Note: While I am reviewing this game independently and honestly, it should be noted that a copy has been provided to me by 2K for the purpose of this review. Warning: Light spoilers from Marvel’s Midnight Suns game are below!]
What is Marvel’s Midnight Suns?
Marvel’s Midnight Suns is a tactical RPG that features many well-known characters from the Marvel universe, as well as Easter eggs to make the experience better. Based on the Rise of the Midnight Sons comic saga from the early 1990s, the new game tells the story of Marvel heroes teaming up to stop the true evil Lilith, as the old evil Doctor Faustus of Hydra has used dark magic to resurrect her.
Sensing imminent danger, Doctor Strange and Iron Man ask Johnny Blaze for help, but due to his age and the loss of everyone he ever cared about, he refuses. Meanwhile, Lilith’s dark magic is beginning to infect the world and the heroes must create a secret shield around the Sanctum Sanctorum as the last bastion to protect the realm.
Seeking more allies, their next destination is Magik’s Limbo. Here they meet the all-new Midnight Suns team, which includes Magik, Blade, Robbie Reyes/Ghost Rider, and Nico Minoru/Sister Grimm. The heroes are also joined by Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel.
Some fans have been vocal about the game’s lack of certain fan-favorite characters like Elsa Bloodstone and Moon Knight. However, their absence makes more sense when you consider that this game has been in the works since 2017 before these characters joined the comics Midnight Sons team in Doctor Strange: Damnation. I hope they will be added as DLC characters after the first four that have already been announced.
We meet Sara/Caretaker, who is Lilith’s sister, and they decide to resurrect the Hunter, Lilith’s child, who died when killing Lilith. The Hunter is a character created specifically for the game, and it’s up to the player to decide what they will look like and whether they will play as the light side or the dark side.
Although there is only one ending, your decisions have the power to affect your relationships with other characters, as well as improve your skills. You can interact with characters on game nights, film nights, playing cards, and much more, with every activity boosting character traits and giving you and them experience.
The challenges arise when Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch gets kidnapped by Lilith, preventing the heroes from retrieving all of Hunter’s memories. They also encounter the first fallen demon created by Lilith, which is Venom, who is now a stronger, more brutal, and fully evil version of the deadly symbiote. Although Spider-Man comes to their aid and later joins the Midnight Suns, Venom is not so easily defeated.
After experiencing strange feelings, the Hunter discovers that they are the only one, for the time being, to see the ghost of Agatha Harkness. Instead of being a villain, this version of Agatha was Hunter’s late friend, Wanda’s mentor, and Sara’s close companion. The ghost of Agatha serves as our guide through the story as an NPC figure who helps fill the gaps in the story and pushes the story forward.
Many of the subsequent plot developments are spoilers that may change your reception of the story. The entire story can be around 35-40 hours, and that’s only if you just play the main story missions and don’t focus on character upgrades.
There is also additional playtime from exploring Limbo, the Midnight Suns’ Abbey castle, and the surrounding territory, as well as reading the character diaries to learn more about Hunter, their past with Lilith and Sara, and other backstory. Getting to know these stories allows the player to understand the scale of the entire conflict and the full threat of Lilith.
After all these background adventures and side missions, the main story always comes to the same point. This allows the player to gain experience, unlock more items, and find more Easter eggs without disturbing the narrative.
Marvel’s Midnight Suns is a much better game than you might think
While there are only thirteen characters currently available for use, another four are on the way as DLC, to be released in 2023. The player can easily rotate their team to play as their favorite heroes. Of course, there are times when it is mandatory to use a certain hero for a specific mission, but this isn’t a major problem and helps familiarize the player with each character.
The player can also customize their characters easily by changing how they’ll look while they’re in Limbo or in battle. Customization is available for combat suits, colors, and more. The most customizable character is Hunter, where the player has control over even the smallest cosmetic items like goggles, collars, and masks, to change their look.
Each hero also has a customizable set of cards (with the Hunter having more than thirty abilities to choose from) with different powers, effects, or designs. I’m most excited about the ability to create stronger bonds with any character I want. These friendship bonds not only increase each character’s powers but also our own.
There is no open world per se. Midnight Suns is similar to Mortal Kombat 11 and Marvel’s Avengers limited worlds. You can explore a certain area, choose ingredients for potions/club encounters, and open chests for items, and that’s it.
The most important thing for gamers who don’t know much about the game is that there is no multiplayer in Marvel’s Midnight Suns, as well as no microtransactions to facilitate gameplay or speed up the player’s progress. The only microtransactions that exist are for premium skins for characters. Non-premium skins can be unlocked simply through the game’s main story and side missions.
To be honest, I didn’t have much hype for Marvel’s Midnight Suns before starting the game because it looked similar to the mechanics in Marvel’s mobile games. But I was so wrong. Although this game can be repetitive at times, it’s definitely worth giving it a chance, especially because of the storyline and unique characters.
My rating for this game:
★★★★ / ♥♥♥♥
Marvel’s Midnight Suns is now available to play on Playstation 4, Playstation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S/X and on PC. Have you played this game? What do you think so far? Let us know on social media or The Cosmic Circus Discord!