The last time I reviewed Marvel Heroes, the Marvel Universe action RPG, I wasn’t impressed. There wasn’t much to hook me to play more and I found a bunch of things that bothered me. There are still a few of these, but 220 hours later, I think I can safely say that I had a great time with this updated version of MH.
Instead of randomly finding heroes and paying real money to unlock them, you now gather Eternity Shards and you can spend these to buy new heroes. You can buy a random hero for 175 or the most expansive ones at 800. I’m a bit bummed that these random hero packs can drop tokens for heroes you already have - it increases their ultimate attack - it feels so disappointing, increase the cost of random heroes a little and make them new heroes only! Even when I bought hero tokens with some real money, I got duplicates twice, bummer. As you go through quests, you get Marks of Odin, which allow you to buy pretty powerful artefact that you have to level up. I love all of this, you still find cool stuff by playing, but you also accumulate currencies which you can use to buy pretty good items, you never feel like you’re getting ‘nothing’.
The game is still a crazy mess when other players roam around you, especially in these multiplayer maps where you’ll sometimes have legendary quests to do. These quests range from killing a number of enemies to completing dungeons and they give Marks of Odin and a ton of experience. During my multiple playthroughs, it wasn’t rare that I just stopped playing the main story once I got to level 20 and instead did legendary quests non-stop. The quests don’t feel balanced between each other; some are very long, some are very annoying, some can be done easily - like the ones asking you to kill 30 blue and yellow enemies. Some of the annoyance comes from the fact that certain enemies just won’t spawn in this big map you’re patrolling, so maybe telling the player where they are on the minimap would help!
You also get synergy for your heroes, you get bonus experience for each hero at level 60 and you get bonus stats for heroes that get to 25 and 50. These synergies help your next hero you play with get to maximum level faster and easier, which lets your next hero go even faster, and so forth. After my tenth hero, I had a few good items, these stacks of relics that give you bonuses, the enchanted very powerful items - there’s even an enchantment called Bowazon - it’s all fun. The only downside with playing that many heroes is how similar they are in the end. I had to go out of my way to use different attacks than the ones I wanted to, because otherwise too many of my heroes would play identically. Heroes could maybe have a tighter moveset with more flavour?
I really enjoyed my second time with Marvel Heroes, and it’s a great free action RPG where Hawkeye and Loki punch Magneto in the head forever. There are some very good ideas in there, ideas that could benefit most games of that genre. Mostly keeping the player interested by trickling rewards constantly instead of leaving all of that to chance for potential disappointment.