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Gazillion Entertainment
MMORPG | Setting:Super-Hero | Status:Cancelled  (est.rel 06/04/13)  | Pub:Gazillion Entertainment
PVP:Yes | Distribution:Download | Retail Price:Free | Pay Type:Free | Monthly Fee:n/a
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Hits and Misses of Advance Pack 2

By Michael Bitton on October 01, 2014 | Columns | Comments

Hits and Misses of Advance Pack 2

Gazillion isn’t really a studio to hold back much when it comes to showing or discussing the future of Marvel Heroes. Sometimes this bites them in the ass and fans are disappointed, but most of the time, fans are literally spoiled with new information on the game just about all the time. Heck, Doomsaw’s got his own spoiler subforums on the Marvel Heroes official forums.

One way these spoilers tie directly into Gazillion’s business model is in the offering of Advance Packs. These packs straight up tell you which heroes/villains (or team-ups) Gazillion plans on adding to the game over the next year and gives players an opportunity to essentially pre-order the whole lot of them (with additional bonuses) at a significant discount. I picked up the original Advance Pack because there was no way I wasn’t going to pick up each and every of the characters on offer individually, so for me, it made perfect sense.

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Advance Pack 2? Well, it's a bit meh. Gazillion recently unveiled Advance Pack 2 for Marvel Heroes; these are characters players can look forward to adding to their roster in 2015. Not only is the 2015 roster a bit underwhelming, but the pack also replaced bonus Fortune Cards with boosts. Not that I don’t love boosts, but Fortune Cards were a nice bonus as you could get lucky and end up with something unique included in the various future Fortune Card sets.

In any case, let’s break down the hits and misses of Advance Pack 2.

HITS

Doctor Doom

Where the original Advance Pack came with numerous villains, Advance Pack 2 only comes with one (for now), but if his ego had anything to say on the matter, he’d easily be enough villain for the whole pack. Doctor Doom is a fan favorite and he’s done his share of good deeds (even if they are ultimately self serving) so it makes sense to add him to the roster. All I know is that there better be a bunch of Hidden Missiles and Foot Diving going on when he eventually drops. 

He should totally get “the chair”, too.

Iceman

Bobby Drake is one of the “coolest” (oh, come on) X-men out there and you’ll find fans clamoring for his inclusion in any Marvel game missing him. Besides being an obvious no brainer to add to the Marvel Heroes roster, there really isn’t anyone like him available in the current roster, so he should offer Gazillion some unique opportunities to flex their creative muscles in power design. Bring on the ice!

 

Blade

Wesley Snipes brought Blade to mainstream audiences in the late 90’s and did a heck of a job at it in the process. Blade is a human-vampire hybrid of sorts and he’s tasked himself with ridding the world of vampires one bloodsucker at a time.  Marvel Heroes is still without a vampire on the roster, and you can keep Jubilee, so Blade is an obvious shoe in here.  I’m excited to see what gadgets Gazillion mixes in with his requisite melee and gun moves.

War Machine

Like Iceman, War Machine is just one of those fan favorite characters that stands out like a sore thumb as missing from the Marvel Heroes roster. I had previously suggested him as a team-up in the interim, but I’m glad to see Gazillion is prepping him for playable sooner rather than later. It looks like Gaz is even planning to incorporate a neat overcharge mechanic into his kit and if done right it could add some real flavor and nuance to his gameplay.

 

Winter Soldier

Returning to prominence in the latest Captain America film, Winter Soldier makes perfect sense to add to the Marvel Heroes roster. Plus, who doesn’t want to play a bionic commando in Marvel Heroes? Mix in some guns with some good ‘ol cybernetic arm punchy-punchy (don’t forget the electric shocks, too) and you’ve got the makings of a pretty fun kit.

 

MISSES

Black Cat

Don’t get me wrong, I love the Black Cat. I’ve even suggested Felicia as team-up in the past. The thing is, Gazillion has been adamant about not adding ‘200 Eternity Splinter’ heroes to Advance Packs and it’s hard for me to see what Black Cat brings to the table that would warrant Gazillion putting in additional work. She’s a fairly simple and straightforward character that would make perfect sense as a 200 ES hero and with so many potential wins Gaz could have had in her place, I can’t help but feel this was a complete miss.

Replace With:  Magik. Bizarrely, I’ve seen Gazillion mention Magik as potentially a 200 ES hero in the past and I’m really not sure why. Magik’s seen a resurgence in comics in recent years and between her awesome Soulsword moves, demon summoning, mouth lasers, stepping disc, and wide array of other abilities, it’s actually hard for me to see her as anything less than a huge 600 ES undertaking.. Magik is an opportunity for some seriously sick VFX work and she deserves nothing less.  

 

Kitty Pryde

Gaz pushed back on adding Kitty as a playable character initially, and they probably should have stuck to their guns. Sure, she’s a fan favorite, and she is particularly popular with the Marvel Heroes fanbase, but taking up priority as an addition to Advance Pack 2 doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me.  Aside from coming with a number of melee moves at her disposal, she doesn’t bring anything unique to the table other than her phasing abilities, and Gazillion has already said that these would be hard to properly represent in Marvel Heroes.  I just don’t see the practicality in her inclusion. This is a fan service character that could have easily been pushed off to 2016 or beyond.

Replace With: Havok.  The Summers family has a deep bench of characters that would be great to see in Marvel Heroes and starting with Cyclops’ brother, Havok, would be awesome. Like Kitty, Havok is a huge fan favorite (he’s on just about every Marvel Heroes fan top 10 list). However, unlike Kitty, Havok’s got an easy to imagine kit with some seriously explosive (har har) potential.

 

She-Hulk

Despite her admittedly awesome personality, I’m not really sure what Jennifer brings to Marvel Heroes as a playable character, at least not enough to warrant the priority of a slot in the game’s second Advance Pack. She’s one of the most plain bruisers in the Marvel universe. It’s hard for me to imagine She-Hulk’s kit consisting of anything but punches and dropkicks. Meh.

Replace With:  Spider-Woman or Nick Fury. Doomsaw’s been teasing the SHIELD Agent summoning ‘Nickromancer’ Nick Fury for a while now and I think he would have made for a perfect fit in Advance Pack 2 as a completely unique experience.

Alternatively, Spider-Woman is a great candidate for inclusion. Jessica’s entertaining personality, bioelectric attacks (Venom Blasts), pheromones (confusion play), and melee prowess would combine well for a kit that certainly brings more to the table than the snooze fest that is She-Hulk.

 

What would your ideal Advance Pack 2 look like? Share your list with us below!

Michael Bitton / Michael began his career at the WarCry Network in 2005 as the site manager for several different WarCry fansite portals. In 2008, Michael worked for the startup magazine Massive Gamer as a columnist and online news editor. In June of 2009, Michael joined MMORPG.com as the site's Community Manager.