MultiVersus was the beautiful surprise announcement for the end of 2021. A Smash Bros-Like largely inspired by Nintendo’s Super Smash Bros. The particularity of this MultiVersus is that it will be free-to-play, therefore completely free, offering a few micro-transactions to allow the game to be profitable.
Expected for this year (without further details), we had the chance to access the private beta held in recent days. The opportunity to take charge of the title for several hours, discover the first maps and the first characters. The opportunity also to give you our first opinion on this title which could compete with the untouchable Super Smash Bros. Ultimate on Nintendo Switch.
MultiVersus: the nice surprise?
Let it be said, the Smash Bros-Like are quite unusual and very often, rare are those who manage to achieve with the master. In 2012, Sony had achieved a very nice coup with PlayStation All-Star Battle Royale which managed to pull out of the game by offering some differences and innovations compared to Super Smash Bros.
Ten years later, a new fighter enters the arena with MultiVersus, a title published by Warner Bros. Games and developed by Player First Games. The idea this time is not to make a game exclusive to a platform with all the heroes of the latter. The game will feature many icons that belong to Warner. The DC Comics universe, Scoody-Doo, or the Looney Tunes, MultiVersus is likely to please fans of pop culture!
The particularity of MultiVersus is to offer two-on-two matches as the main game mode. This will be of paramount importance for the gameplay and the course of the game since this cooperation will allow the creation of guilds and the preparation of strategies between players. It will be possible to combine the special abilities of such a character with another to have a major advantage over your opponents. Of course, it will also be possible to play in traditional melee matches where the four players will face each other on their side, or to meet one on one.
With MultiVersus, you can play up to four in local mode on the same console. You will also be able to play two, online, on the same machine. Little more, it is possible to activate the cross-platform to play with players on other media and to activate or deactivate PC players. The game is expected on PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and PC.
In terms of gameplay, we are in a typical Smash Bros-Like. With the square key (X on Xbox), you make basic attacks, which you can direct your blows up, down and to the sides. With the triangle key (Y on Xbox), you make more powerful attacks that you can also direct. The round key (B on Xbox) is used to dodge, while the cross key (A on Xbox) to jump. With the L2 key (LB on Xbox), you can pick up bonuses on the map to throw them at your opponents. The goal of the game is to inflict the most damage on the other players in order to be able to give them the fatal blow and expel them from the map. Characters can accumulate points during the game to trigger a special, more powerful move.
Concretely, in terms of gameplay, it remains simple and effective and some characters are easier to handle than others. Indeed, MultiVersus presents about fifteen fighters including Bugs Bunny, Sammy and Vera from Scooby-Doo, Taz, the Tasmanian Devil, Batman, Superman, Wonder Women or even Harley Queen. The title offers five character classes with sluggers, tanks, mages, assassins and supports.
Each category has its skills. For example, supports will be perfect for designing an effective strategy to combine the abilities of two characters. With the Reindeer Dog, you will be able to create a bond with your teammate and save him when he is sent from the map or is about to fall from it. Thanks to the link, your teammate will be brought back to dry land. The sluggers will have the particularity of being able to chain many blows fairly quickly. While tanks will be slower to hit you, but they will do more damage.
When you use a character, you gain experience points which allow it to level up. You will then unlock emotes, skins, but also and above all skills that will give you advantages during combat. For example, protection with reduced damage when you get hit, or the possibility of increasing the power of your hits.
In terms of maps, we had the opportunity to discover seven arenas in five environments. We had Batman’s Batcave. Scooby-Doo’s haunted mansion, the TROPHY ROOM (with and its platforms), the tree-house and the training room (again with or without a platform).
Overall, the maps are quite well detailed and offer settings faithful to the universes with beautiful references. The appearance of the Batmobile or the bats that fly from time to time during the game are just an example of the interactions that we can have in the Batcave.
MultiVersus: an encouraging first opinion
After a few hours on MultiVersus, our opinion is necessarily positive. What we have seen during this alpha is encouraging and suggests great things when the title is released. The game is quite accessible (more than Super Smash Bros. Ultimate) while offering a bit of technique. The idea of favoring duo fights is a good thing to innovate and create strategies with complementary characters.
We are now waiting to find out how the paid content will be added to the game and if the latter does not unbalance the games with pay-to-win content too much. We also hope that the menus will be improved, because we faced a lot of bugs and latencies. In addition, the menus are a bit too messy. But these are all details at this stage of development.