Marvel Heroes would’ve been seven years old today if Gazillion hadn’t imploded

    
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Marvel Heroes would’ve been seven years old today if Gazillion hadn’t imploded

It may not have been a traditional MMORPG, but it’s safe to say that Marvel Heroes was a pet favorite here among the Massively OP staff and readers; we even handed it awards and gave it a dedicated column. And today would’ve been its seventh birthday – if it weren’t dead.

Gazillion’s Marvel game launched in 2013 as what we came to call an MMOARPG – an ARPG akin to Diablo, but with an always-online, mostly open world that put you in large and small maps with other random players on the regular. It was initially helmed by veteran ARPG developer David Brevik, and of course, it was rolling out as part of the increasingly popular Marvel cinematic franchise. It was fast, it was punchy, it was stuffed with your favorite superhero characters and villains, and by rights it should’ve stayed on top of the world.

But it didn’t. Brevik left in 2016, and by 2017, the game edged off the tracks thanks to a console launch and a poorly received PC update that turned the game on its head. By November, we were covering two convergent stories: Gazillion had gone bizarrely silent, with a missed update and several weeks of no communication with players or press; and the new CEO had been publicly accused by former colleagues of inappropriate conduct toward female employees.

After a month of that studio silence, Disney itself announced it had ended its contract with Gazillion and would be shutting down Marvel Heroes. The pain of losing the game was then compounded by the absolute clusterfuck of a sunset dealt by Gazillion, Marvel, and Disney, as the trio bungled announcements, refunds, and even the date of the sunset itself. As we noted at the time, the only people who lifted a finger for the community were laid-off rank-and-file devs who felt a duty to warn the public about what was going on.

Marvel Heroes won another award from us that year: the award for biggest MMO industry disappointment. We called it the “worst-managed MMORPG sunset of all time,” and our readers voted it as the community pick for the biggest MMO industry blunder of 2017 as well.

And yet the game itself was beloved as a superhero MMO-lite. We miss the hell out of it. Happy birthday, Marvel Heroes. You deserved so much better than you got.

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Jiminy Smegit

This game was a huge missed opportunity. The base game was extremely fun, the heroes mostly played in different and interesting ways. It sure had its issues but broadly speaking, the only thing it lacked was new content. If they had focused as much effort on adding new content as they did on adding new heroes to the cash shop, it would have been a decent success. Imagine if they had enough development staff to produce new chunks of real content to tie in with the latest movie release *sigh*

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Luis Chamba

I love Marvel heroes. My favorite hero is Flash Thompson aka agent venom. And andi Benton aka mania.

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Does not check email

How do you throw away a contract with Disney? People would love to break into the gaming industry and they wiped their butt with the fans money and threw it away. The industry loves to crap on its players.

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James Crow

it was a great game and the people behind it know what they doing (h&s aspect)

the story, characters and the combat just was fun, even after they change some things it still was one of my favorite like playing marvel alliance online .

i bought MA3 on the switch but all i got is the feeling to play MH again

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NeoWolf

I miss it, and not just because I spent WAY more money than Ie ver intended to in it, but because it was my “I have 30 minutes to kill game” and now I don’t have one any more :(

The Supers genre has been woefully underutilised as far as the MMO space goes when it comes to MARVEL.

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mysecretid

I miss Marvel Heroes as well.

The one game I am keeping an eye on, however, is Netmarble’s upcoming Marvel Future Revolution, which I’ve actually seen described as a “mobile MMORPG”, at a time when so many games are trying to hide their MMO roots.

If you’re dubious about any mobile game … as I used to be — remember that there are very polished free emulator programs out there (I use Bluestacks, but there are others) which will allow you to play these games with a mouse and keyboard (or a controller) on your PC as usual.

If you want to look into the upcoming Marvel Future Revolution for yourself, they have a website, a Facebook site, and a bunch of promo and preview game videos on YouTube.

It’s not Marvel Heroes 2.0, alas, but it’s as close to it as I’ve seen since that great game crashed and burned.

Early gameplay and in-game footage from March 2020 is linked below.

Cheers,

Secret

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Tazuras

Good game, RIP.

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Jeremy Barnes

Still miss this game

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Montjoy Onew

same

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Jeremy Barnes

an amusing image, but Disney was not behind the failure of the game. This was all on Gazillion.

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Jeremy Barnes

Disney ended it because Gazillion was a mess. Disney canceled the partnership, but that’s like blaming an abused spouse because they were the one who filed for divorce.

Bereman
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Bereman

Yeah…Disney may have been mixed in with the communication confusion at the end of the game’s (and studio’s) life, which I remember drawing an unusually large amount of ire directed at them from this site (which I always found a little weird), but the studio’s issues and failures and a significant portion of the communication issues rest on Gazillion itself, particularly the leadership within that company that let it happen or actively contributed to its downfall.

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Kanbe

Ug. I saw the image, saw Marvel Heroes, and instantly got excited that some sort of revival project must be going on. Then I finished reading the headline =/ I miss that game so much.

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Tazuras

I was thinking about that too. It’s too bad, but I think a revival is pretty unlikely due to licensing and having to work with Disney.

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Kanbe

While I agree, I don’t want to hear that XP