With the final downloadable content complete for the Super Smash Bros. franchise, at least for the foreseeable future, the competition for mascot fighters has opened up to some unexpected franchises trying to fill that space. There have always been Smash clones, but none with the same polish and roster of iconic characters that Nintendo could offer. The most recent attempt that had a lot of potential was the bad, but fun, Nickelodeon: Brawl of the Stars, which featured a list of Nick’s most beloved characters going head-to-head. However, a new challenger has stepped in with an even more impressive, if not ridiculous, roster ready to rumble.
MultiVersus is Warner Bros.’ effort to tap into its huge catalog of characters, from comics to anime and movies, and create a platform fighter to take on Smash. While the final product will have to speak for itself, based on what we’ve been shown so far, there’s a good chance this fighter could, at the very least, be a fun alternative for anyone who has already immersed dozens of hours in Smash. . If you want to know everything about this crossover fighting game, here is all the data we could collect on the next one MultiVersus.
There is no specific release date for MultiVersus for now, only that it will arrive in 2022. However, we do know that an open beta will take place in July 2022, hopefully signaling that the game will be ready soon after.
MultiVersus will hit most major platforms, current and next-gen, when it launches, including: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X and S, as well as PC. The only players left out, ironically enough, are Switch players.
The official cinematic trailer that introduced the world MultiVersus is just as crazy as the concept demands. We open to Batman in his Batcave before “strange energy” teleports him to a stage with a statue of Wonder Woman behind him. Shaggy, sandwich in hand, then appears behind him and jumps into his arms in fear. From there, Bugs Bunny warps, followed by Arya Stark from Game of thrones. The two pairs start fighting, throwing Batarangs and pies, resulting in Shaggy bringing the meme to life and becoming Ultra Instinct.
As their fight escalates, we cut to another ongoing brawl between Taz, Harley Quinn, Jake the Dog, and Garnet from Steven Universe. Tom and Jerry also rush in, playing their usual game of cat and mouse. All of the fighters eventually collide in a huge cloud of dust as none other than Superman descends from the sky. He is joined by the iron giant of all characters and flies to join the battle.
Now, the problem that most Smash clones have always had is straying too far from the formula that this game defined, aka PlayStation All Stars: Battle Royale. With MultiVersus, however, the developers seem to be trying to make the game as mechanically close to Smash as possible. You’ll attack your enemies to increase the number below them, causing subsequent hits to send them further and further away from the stage until they can’t come back or hit a barrier and are eliminated. The main difference aside from the roster is that the default mode will be a 2v2 brawl. It was a central goal from the start, and the whole game was seemingly built with teamwork in mind.
Game Director Tony Huynh said:MultiVersus emphasizes teamwork and social play with an ever-expanding cast of characters you know and love… Each character has unique moves that focus on team play, whether a smoke bomb or Batman to cover your team’s movements. Steven shields his ally for extra defense. Save someone with a lasso. However, the game supports other modes, including free-for-all 1v1 and four-player matches.
A full list of moves isn’t published, but it looks like there will be pretty much everything you’d expect in a Smash clone, like double jumps, different types of attacks, projectiles, shields, dodges and charging energy. Combat feels fast, if a little slippery, and each character will have their own strengths and moves to learn depending on what class they belong to:
In addition to their classes, you can also customize your characters in many ways. The costumes are the most obvious, a few being Black Lantern Superman and “Bruce Lee” Shaggy, but each character also has an in-depth perk system. There are perks for offensive, defensive, utility, and unique abilities. These can be redeemed to hone your character as desired, but the unlock process, if any, for them has yet to be shared.
The current roster has 16 characters revealed so far, with more to be revealed soon. The current lineup, with their voice actor, is:
- Batman (DC) – voiced by Kevin Conroy
- Superman (DC) – voiced by George Newbern
- wonder woman (DC) – voiced by Abby Trott
- harley quinn (DC) – voiced by Tara Strong
- Shaggy (scooby-doo) – voiced by Matthew Lillard
- insect rabbit (looney tunes) – voiced by Eric Bauza
- Arya Stark (game of thrones) – voiced by Maisie Williams
- Jacques the dog (adventure time) – voiced by John DiMaggio
- Finn the human (adventure time) – voiced by Jeremy Shada
- Steven Universe (Steven Universe) – voiced by Daniel DiVenere
- Garnet (Steven Universe) – voiced by Estelle
- Tom and Jerry – voiced by Eric Bauza
- Reindog (an extraordinary original creature)
- Velma (scooby-doo) – voiced by Kate Mucucci
- Tasmanian Devil, aka Taz (looney tunes) – voiced by Jim Cummings
- iron giant (The iron giant) – voiced by Jon Lipow
In terms of stages, we know we can fight in the Bat Cave, Jake and Finn’s Treefort, and Themyscira so far. Some stages will also have hazards and destructible items to watch out for.
Fighting game fans will also be pleased to hear that MultiVersus won’t suffer from the same online issues as Smash. Not only will the game have dedicated servers, but they will also feature the vastly superior rollback netcode as opposed to lag-based, which causes a lot more desync issues in fighting games. On top of that, matches will be easy to get because it’s fully cross-play, and it will also have cross-progression if you want to move between platforms.
In alpha testing, we were extremely pleased with the quality of the game when we got our hands on it. The most exciting aspects are how the game differs from its obvious inspirations, such as the previously mentioned classes, and the characters having specially designed moves to be used to support their teammates.
The developers obviously have a lot of love for the hardware, as evidenced by the embrace of meme culture surrounding these characters, like face-stealing Ultra Instinct Shaggy and Arya Stark.
The big question here is how much content in MultiVersus is not multiplayer. We’ve already stated that the game is designed for 2v2, but also allows 1v1 and four players free for all, but no specific modes outside of the norm were shown. We know there will at least be ranked playlists for those looking to take the game more seriously, but for now, that’s all we know.
DLC, or at least microtransactions, are certainly in store for MultiVersus since it is a free game. We already know that the game will launch with two forms of currency: some type of gold and gems. Gold coins are earned in-game by playing, and we assume gems are the paid premium type of currency. This is exactly what we suspect, however, and no word has been given on what these currencies actually are, what they are used for, or how to earn them.
Again, looking at the beta, as long as things didn’t differ too much, the battle pass progression seemed fair enough. Of course, things like this can always change before or even after launch.
As for what would happen in the future, that’s easy: more characters, scenes and costumes. There are a ton of WB characters that aren’t represented here yet, and they’ve shown they’re not afraid to bring in characters from tonally clashing franchises. We’re ready for characters like Harry Potter and Frodo to hopefully join the roster in the future.
MultiVersus is free to play. There’s no need to pre-order, but we’ll let you know about the announced release date anyway, so you can be ready to download the game when it’s fully available.
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