Developer Crystal Dynamics has revealed the improvements coming to Marvel's Avengers with the free PlayStation 5 update and the native next-gen version. The studio formally announced its next-gen plans for the persistent title last week in a War Table breakdown centered around Hawkeye.
Plans were originally in place for Marvel's Avengers' next-gen update to go live in late 2020, but it, along with some post-launch content, received a delay not long after the game hit store shelves. These setbacks and the scarcity of meaningful endgame content contributed to the live service's rapid decline in terms of its player-count. Suffice it to say, Marvel's Avengers suffered mightily, as did Square Enix. Late last year, the publisher reported millions of dollars in losses because of the Avengers title, despite the meteoric success of Final Fantasy VII Remake. Whether or not the advent of Hawkeye's Future Imperfect campaign and the next-gen updates will provide Marvel's Avengers with the boost it needs remains to be seen.
Crystal Dynamics unveiled the improvements that will feature in the PS5's free upgrade and the console's native version of Marvel's Avengers. The upgrade, available via backwards compatibility, will support High-Performance Mode (60 FPS at 1080p) and 4K Mode (30 FPS with checkerboard 4K). Cross-gen matchmaking, cross-gen save file transfers, faster load times, and improved frame rate are also being introduced for the upgrade. As expected, the native version on PS5 is a different beast entirely. It will come packed with all of the above, barring the comparatively faster load times, and boast a suite of other features. The native iteration will take advantage of spatial audio, DualSense's haptic feedback, higher-resolution textures, and improved heroics and armor destruction. In High-Performance Mode, the native version will run 60 FPS at checkerboard 4K, while 4K Mode should run in native 4K. Interestingly, the Xbox versions won't support the two graphics modes.
The graphics modes on PS5 seem fairly standard, and the improvements themselves are rather impressive. Still, there's no telling how all of this will affect Marvel's Avengers as a whole. While it could be step in the right direction, the launch of brand-new content will ultimately determine whether lapsed players and newcomers give the live-service another chance.
Apart from the release of Hawkeye's campaign on March 18, not much else is known about future content for the title. Leaks suggest a Black Panther update may be in the works, but neither Crystal Dynamics nor Square Enix have cofirmed as much. Of course, new information about the roadmap is bound to surface following Future Imperfect's March release.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe has finally returned with the Disney+ premiere of WandaVision. A show tapping into a classic comics story depicting the bizarre and mysterious suburban relationship of Scarlet Witch and Vision, it is undoubtedly a hit with fans of the MCU films and Marvel comics alike. The show's debut has given Wanda a boost in popularity, and fans are eager to dive into the history of the character and see her pop up in other Marvel enterprises. For example, those who stopped playing Marvel's Avengers after finishing the campaign might wonder if the game has taken the opportunity to add Wanda's hex powers to its roster of heroes.
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