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Marvel recruits Blade, Ghost Rider & some Avengers for new RPG 'Midnight Suns,' from the creators of XCOM

By Justin Carter
Marvel Midnight Suns

The last few years have seen a slew of Marvel games for consoles, largely focused on heavy hitters like Spider-Man and the Avengers. Another game that'll soon make its way among that illustrious lineup is Marvel's Midnight Suns, a tactical-RPG that brings in some lesser known Marvel heroes....and also some Avengers.

The game's reveal came earlier today during Gamescom with a CG trailer, which features heroes like Blade and the Robbie Reyes incarnation of Ghost Rider slicing up demons alongside Captain Marvel and Captain America. If the heroes wearing black and gold armor aren't metal enough for you, the trailer is set to a cover of Metallica's "Enter Sandman" that's plenty moody and foreboding.

Check out the announcement trailer below:

Unlike Insomniac's Spider-Man sandbox games or the loot-RPG that is Marvel's Avengers, Midnight Suns is a tactical RPG from Firaxis, best known for the recent XCOM games. Its director, Jake Solomon, revealed to Polygon that the studio was contacted by Marvel shortly after the release of 2016's XCOM 2. "There was an executive vice president from Marvel on the call and they had very specific feedback about XCOM 2's final mission," Solomon recalled. "I was like, well, these guys ... actually really are big fans. Right away, they understood the kind of games we make.” 

The Midnight Sons are a team of Marvel anti-heroes who first came together in 1992, consisting of weirdos like Blade, Doctor Strange, and Johnny Blaze to defeat Lilith, Mother of Demons. That same premise carries over to the Midnight Suns game, and players will take on the role of an original character dubbed the Hunter who will lead a squad of three other heroes into turn-based battle.

Solomon promised over 40 superpowers available to the player to make their version of the Hunter, and in between missions, you'll be able to bond with the other heroes in your home base, the Abbey. A baker's dozen of heroes are expected, and most of them are in the trailer itself: along with the Captains, Blade, and Ghost Rider, your crew will consist of Doctor Strange, Wolverine, Nico Minoru from the Runaways, Magik, and Iron Man. 

While Firaxis' first two XCOM games were known and lauded for having permadeath –– as in, if a squad mate dies, they are permanently dead unless you reload to an earlier save –– this is a mechanic that'll be absent in Midnight Suns. While this likely comes from Marvel not wanting such big name characters to be easily killed off in a game, Solomon thinks it also plays to the power fantasy of the game. "XCOM is the fantasy of soldiers holding on for dear life against a superior enemy. And in Midnight Suns very, very quickly — early on — I realized that the superior enemy in this game is the superheroes. So instead the bad guys are terrified of you.” 

Marvel's Midnight Suns will hit PlayStation, Xbox, PC, and Switch in March 2022. A full gameplay reveal is expected to hit next week on Sept. 1.