The Lucky Fighting Game Super Smash Bros. was born with the idea of creating a board game with the most unforgettable characters in the world of video games, but the Kyoto house helped create one of the most iconic, yet sparsely populated, video game genres: we we are of course talking about fighting platform gamewhose Nintendo franchise is still the undisputed leader today.
- PC, PS4, PS5, XONE, XSX
- platforms, fighting games
- Release date :
- Warner Bros.
- Warner Bros.
After all, the idea of seeing your favorite characters fight has always tickled the minds of gamers and combat platforms are one of the genres that best suit this concept, thanks to their accessibility which allows them to attract a wide audience.
However, despite the fact that today this style of play is more popular than ever, thanks to the many records broken by Super Smash Bros Ultimate (which you can find on Amazon), no production has ever managed to really establish itself due not only to not always sufficiently optimized gameplay, but also to alack of truly iconic heroes.
Given this, it seems completely understandable that when Warner Bros. Games announced Multiversetrue free-to-play rival to Bugs Bunny, Batman, Arya Stark and Shaggy in a single fighting game, fan interest was highly inflamed: many thought it might become the first truly credible alternative for PlayStation, Xbox and PC consoles.
In preparation for the upcoming closed alpha which is also about to be released to the general public, we had the opportunity to try it out first hand as a preview to answer the question that many fans arise since the announcement: Multiverse can really become a worthy rival for Super Smash Bros.?
Just a “clone” or something more?
Developped by Play early games, Multiverse has never hidden his ambition not to pass for a simple “clone», but to be able to be a similar platform fighter, but different and accessible also to the general public – even those less accustomed to video games of the genre.
A decision also evident in the style of gameplay adopted which, while meeting several similarities with the most famous of platform fighters, including the use of standard charged attacks and special moves for each direction, also has substantial differences that reach to make it unique.
Commands, for example, they are much more devoted to mobility and push the user never to remain motionless in the same place: it is not possible to activate shields or take hold, but only and exclusively dodging.
To better reflect this approach, players will also have the ability to use dodges, special moves, and mid-air jumps up to two times each: each character is therefore able to easily return to the ground – also thanks to the possibility of wall climbing on the wall, a mechanic replaces the classic grips at the edge of a scenario and which further encourages the aggressiveness of the players, but still encourages creativity.
If you repeat the same movements over and over again, the game will warn you and your opponent that you are inflicting less damage: if this happens, you will necessarily have to review your approach so as not to be caught off guard by counterattacks opponents.
Curiously, however, the developers have decided to reverse the combinations needed to perform neutral and side attacks: at first sight, this is an aspect that could be confusing for those accustomed to the classic style of play, but fortunately controls are highly customizable and even this decision can be “overridden” by activating simple settings.
Fighters are divided into four specific categories, each playing a specific role: Thugs, Sorcerers and Assassins are the characters with the most offensive potential, while Tanks and Healers are heavier and able to take a higher amount of damage.
Of course, there are also clear differences between the different categories: thugs are the quintessentially balanced characters and capable of fulfilling any role perfectly; wizards are extremely similar to rogues, but prefer long-range attacks and item use; assassins are faster, more fragile, and able to use multiple towers at will; Tanks have several options to ward off opponents and protect themselves; finally, healers can apply heals, buff their allies, and apply debuffs.
Multiverse has been repeatedly announced as a game designed to make the most of these roles in 2v2 battles, although it is still possible to continue playing in the traditional 1v1: these statements had left more than a doubt about the real balance, since there could be a real risk that certain characters can only work in synergy with each other and that on their own they are less effective.
From our first impressions, we can say that the developers have given enough thought to the problem and our proof of this is absolutely positive: Play First Games has ingeniously decided to boast special attacks different properties depending on the mode chosen, thus functioning differently in solo combat than in duos.
For example, a movement of a healer that will serve to bring our companion back to the battlefield can therefore be used simply as a trap to inflict a constant amount of damage, or an ability capable of offering shields to our companions can simply be used. to repel an enemy attack.
A decision that will allow you to just choose your favorite character and join the fray in fast and fun games. To underline the nature of a title that is intended to be extremely accessible, the developers have also introduced the possibility of playing as a couple with a friend against the AI and of participating in challenges each for themselves, where four fighters will be able to unleash in utter chaos.
A multiverse of crazy battles
Choosing which platform to play on isn’t a problem either: Multiverse fully supports crossplay and during our tests searching for matches took a maximum of 1.5 minutes. If after this duration the matchmaking still does not assign us worthy opponents, the game will still make us collide with bots: it is possible to immediately understand whether our challenger is a human or not from his nickname, which will usually have an icon next to it, which represents the platform it plays on.
The servers also reacted very well to our tests, remaining constantly online throughout the test and, with a few rare exceptions, without causing lag issues thanks to netcode rollbackwhich can hide possible connection problems.
However, being a free-to-play title, the developers necessarily had to include elements capable of encouraging long-term replayability, as well as ensuring that users continue to invest in the game. Multiverse which will be used for most additional activities.
However, it must be said that, as presented in closed alpha, this is a very generous implementation: credits can indeed be constantly acquired by participating in online matches, although of course there will be higher rewards after a win. The currency can be used not only to unlock characters (Batman, Superman, Steven Universe, Garnet and Arya Stark will cost 2000 credits each during the closed alpha) but also to buy Toast to compliment the opponents and especially to unlock additional advantages .
Any fighter Multiverse it will be able to equip up to four perks, only one of which is exclusive capable of modifying the properties of certain movements: for example, Wonder Woman’s lasso will be able to throw the characters caught, instead of dragging them towards you, in addition to equipping improvements capable of decreasing the cooldown of skills or increase defenses.
We do not hide from you that this is the element that has only raised a doubt for us in view of the final game: each character will in fact be able to unlock different advantages depending on their use, which can however be “inherited” by other fighters using credits, provided they reached at least level 10 first.
We therefore believe that any fear of the possibility of being faced with characters with perhaps excessively powerful advantages is more than justified, although it should be noted that during our test we did not find any improvements particularly excessive and insurmountable.
The Battle Pass could not be missing, now a real must in long-term multiplayer games: users will have the possibility of completing a free version and a premium version, with different cosmetic rewards such as skins, avatar icons, and new taunts.
For this trial version, however, the Battle Pass Premium has been made available to all players, so at the moment we do not yet know how it will actually be implemented, in addition of course to the final cost. If it will be used exclusively for cosmetic items and will not be used to implement features as exclusive benefits, it should still represent a non-invasive bonus for the end user and absolutely not mandatory to take full advantage of the multiplayer battles.
Version tested: Xbox Series S