All eyes are on Square-Enix’s ambitious service-based Avengers. We are only one month away from its official release. The Beta this weekend finally gave people a feeling for how it plays. Some of their business practices have also been shrouded in controversies. No matter where one stands on the issue, it still will be a game to keep an eye out for. If the developers can keep their promises, we could see a game with an ever-growing roster of iconic characters. Even before the official launch, they confirmed that Hawkeye would appear as their first DLC character post-launch. No exact info is given but there is an interesting visual tease of what we can expect. In the July War Table, they confirmed the DLC concept to be titled the “Avengers Initiative” that would take continue beyond the “Reassemble” storyline of the game. Keen eyes will notice that they have added four distinctive placeholders for the icons.
The odd thing is, Hawkeye is described as the first DLC release but is placed as the second. So, the obvious reason could be that Spider-Man will be the first official post-launch character. He is exclusive to the PlayStation and the deal wasn’t official at the time. Still hoping that there is a chance it is a timed exclusive, as it would be a waste not to share this experience with everyone. Hopefully, we get a bit more information on those plans shortly before launch. Now, the only question remains who are the other characters? There might be a chance that this was already spoiled back in April through the leak of the Lego sets for the game.
SPOILER ALERT: Four upcoming characters and one villain for Marvel's Avengers have leaked through LEGO sets.
Loki, Black Panther, War Machine, Captain Marvel, and Hawkeye.
— James Sigfield (@Jsig212James) April 28, 2020
Lego sets haven’t always been the most reliable source. Many might remember the Iron Man 3 set that had the Mandarin shooting at our titular hero in a scorpion wagon. Naturally, this never took place in the film but the characters were always the common link between the sets and films. What captures our attention is that two months before the M.O.D.O.K. reveal, we see him included in one of the sets alongside our first DLC character. So, the characters that stand out as potential future inclusions would be War Machine, Captain Marvel, and Black Panther. There is also just a good chance they have brief cameos in the story. and there are no definite plans for now. Well, that was until a recent data mining leak from the Avengers Beta was posted on Reddit.
This leak showcases the data set-up for the characters “hero card”. Those that played the Beta might know that each character has a unique season pass. It lets you unlock costumes or goodies throughout the game. Every one of the main six is present in this list alongside some other additions. If you look closely the list contains Hawkeye titled “Clint Barton” rather than his superhero moniker. Alongside him, there are also the following characters that have not officially been revealed yet:
- Kate Bishop
- War Machine
At first, one could just assume these are character-specific cards for the user profiles. Yet, the first line in the programming reveals that there is a War Machine specific Emote. Thinking back at the Lego set, he is also present alongside M.O.D.O.K. as a character. Also, why is Clint included not as Hawkeye but by his actual name? The only reason would be to include a secondary character that shares the same moniker and logo to avoid confusion.
Going by this, there is a good chance we will see these characters in a way that resembles the Super Smash Bros. echo fighters. Iron Man and War Machine are very similar in their basic design and attacks. So, instead of creating him from scratch, they can easily add him as a clone character. His skill tree can be pretty similar with a few new additions that fit the character. War Machine has his shoulder turret, which is included in the Lego set, that is used in a special attack. Personally, this is a great idea to round out the cast and keep a consistent stream of updates. Not every character can be unique so why not just use what is available. The hero card would confirm it’s not just an extra reskin, as these characters deserve some attention.
The additional point is that it could verify the Lego set as a reliable source for the DLC. This would point to Captain Marvel and Black Panther as the last two teased additions to the game. There is only one loose end that feels like it was forgotten. At E3 2019, there was a tease of the inclusion of Ant-Man. It seemed like he would be the first DLC character in how it was built-up. We know he is included in the game’s story but that was it. He also didn’t get a big logo reveal like the Hawkeye trailer. Perhaps he was initially going to be included but was postponed for some unknown reason. He could also be the reason why he is only placed second. Fan-demand for Barton was huge so they postponed Ant-Man’s inclusion. Whatever it may end up being, this is the fun aspect of this game. It includes references to Daisy Johnson and Spider-Man, so who knows how far in advance they mapped it out. Here’s hoping we some kind of confirmation or, as I point out in my Beta deep dive, a roadmap of where this game is heading. The above overview could be used as a template to offer some more details. Well see if this gets confirmed but it is quite exciting to think how much will be added in the future.