Dev Talk Vol.03丨Designing Super Heroes

Marvel Rivals is the ultimate Super Hero showdown, but creating these larger-than-life Super Heroes and Villains is no small feat. We're talking about characters with more powers of all sorts, from Spider-Man's web-slinging antics to the Hulk's… well, you know what the Hulk does. Each of these characters comes with a laundry list of powers, personality quirks, and 85 years of backstory, especially if you're Namor. Our challenge? To distill all that Marvel magic into playable characters that not only do justice to the originals but also deliver heart-pounding, joy-inducing gameplay that'll leave our players wanting more.

So, how do we turn these beloved icons into virtual powerhouses? It's not an exact science. We start by diving deep into each Super Hero's lore and distilling their core essence. Then we ask ourselves how we can push them while adding a dash of gameplay pizzazz. After that, we blend until we get something that feels just right! Then comes the fun part—finding their perfect fit among our classes (VANGUARD, Duelist, Strategist) pouring in their abilities, personality, nitty-gritty mechanics, and style to create a concoction that'll stand out against all of their other iterations. It's a wild ride, from brainstorming to testing and tweaking (sometimes we even have to start over), but we're committed to giving you the most authentic Marvel experience possible.

Let's take Loki, for instance. We kicked off his design, focusing on capturing his mischievous side. We asked ourselves “How do we push Loki to be the ultimate trickster, outmaneuvering enemies on the battlefield with flair?” So, after some serious brainstorming, we figured, “Forget brute force - Loki's all about using brainpower to help pals and outsmart baddies.”

With his 'core essence' in our back pocket, we cooked up a game plan for Loki that's unlike anything else. We're talking illusions, surprise switcheroos, battlefield vanishing acts, and the best part—shapeshifting into other characters to bamboozle everyone, even fooling his own crew! When Loki goes incognito as a foe, not even the keenest eye can spot the difference. Sneaky, right?

Then there's Hela. As the Asgardian Goddess of Death, she's all about that deadly grace mixed with a hefty dose of aggression. Our big idea for Hela? Picture her as a "ruthless and precise death goddess" who's also a "master of manipulating souls." We wanted every player who put on Hela's crown to feel that precise, soul-snatching power. Inspired by everything from the 2011 Fear Itself comic event (specifically New Mutants #29) to more recent iterations, we armed Hela with a lethal, lightning-fast basic attack, the ability to transform into a storm of crows, and even more so that players could feel the power of this Asgardian menace. Those who meet their end at Hela's hand find their souls harvested, enhancing her abilities. Her ultimate move is pure underworld grandeur; When she unleashes it, she becomes colossal, beefing up in health and dishing out even deadlier attacks, looming over the entire battlefield like... well, like a Goddess of Death.

But it's not all rainbow bridges and cotton candy. We face challenges that would make even Thanos break a sweat. Balancing these powerhouses is like herding cats—except these cats can shoot lasers from their chest. Our Super Heroes and Villains are all about those jaw-dropping moves; picture the Hulk bounding across the city, Storm gliding through the air, and Spider-Man zipping around town with those trusty webs. These powers are what make these characters so special, and of course, we want to serve up that same adrenaline in the game. But hey, let's be real, Marvel Rivals is a competitive shooter. We totally get it—keeping the game fair and balanced is crucial. Nailing that sweet spot between power and gameplay has been one of our biggest ongoing challenges.

We've got a pretty solid vision for our heroes and our goal is to stay true to these heroes. As we previously stated, in Marvel Rivals, shooting isn't about guns. We're not about to have the Hulk lugging around a rifle, Black Panther toting a shotgun, or Iron Man scrapping it out solely on the ground. Diverse combat systems such as Team-Ups and adding a boatload of depth are what make this game special and fun! It's a whole new combat frontier and we're constantly fine-tuning it to keep our hero lineup feeling fresh and fierce. It takes a lot to make sure that all these unique fighting styles work together, but hey, we're up for the challenge.

So, what's next? Well, we want you to dive into the chaos, sling some webs, and smash some things – all while giving us the lowdown on what works and what could use a little more gamma radiation. Marvel Rivals is just getting started, and we're counting on your feedback to keep it on the path to greatness. So, suit up, dive in, and let's make Marvel Rivals the hero shooter game of all our dreams!

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