New Midnight Suns Gameplay Shows Card System, Synergies, and the Abbey

Developer Firaxis has released the first gameplay trailer for Marvel's Midnight Suns, and shared new details about its combat, story, and hub area.

Developer Firaxis has released the first gameplay trailer for Marvel's Midnight Suns, and shared new details about its combat, story, and hub area.

As promised, the first gameplay for Marvel’s Midnight Suns, the upcoming tactical RPG from developer Firaxis (Civilization, XCOM), was revealed today during a 30-minute IGN-exclusive live stream. Not only was even more extensive gameplay shown during the stream after the trailer, but members of the development team also shed new light on the game’s systems and story. 

First let’s take a look at the shorter trailer, which shows many of the game’s 12 heroes — such as Blade, Dr. Strange, Wolverine, and the player character, The Hunter — that will be available at launch in March 2022. Heroes include a combination of “the Avengers, X-Men, The Runaways, and more.”

The premise is that Lilith, resurrected by Hydra, has brought forth the forces of the underworld to take over and destroy the world — typical superhero stuff.

In response, the Midnight Suns organization, headquartered in the game’s hub, the Abbey, has summoned The Hunter, who just so happens to be Lilith’s progeny and the only hero able to best Lilith in the past. The Hunter is fully customizable, from body type to hair, clothes, and more.

Battle plays out in a turn-based fashion, with the player controlling up The Hunter and two other superheroes in the field of play. The game’s card-based abilities system deals random “superhero abilities,” that players can then choose from and synergize with to create powerful attacks and combined blows. 

But Marvel’s Midnight Suns is about more than just battling demonic forces and iconic villains under the control of Lilith, it’s also about cultivating relationships with other heroes in the Abbey between missions. Players will be able to have choice-based conversations with other heroes and engage in extracurricular activities, such as training with Ghost Rider and taking a walk with Tony Stark. 

Some cards and abilities are even locked behind the relationships built in the Abbey, and Firaxis says that each character has its own likes and dislikes, which players will need to learn as they play. So this “downtime” will be worth every second. 

There are a number of currencies shown off in a brief snippet, and it appears that those can be used, at least in part, to upgrade the Abbey with items that allow players to bring more skills and buffs into battle.

The gameplay breakdown shows a buildable training dummy that, for example, allows hero moves to be used as a “Shove, or apply Knockback, to enemies on the battlefield.” Firaxis later clarified that the game will not have loot boxes.

More Midnight Suns gameplay, simply teased as The Hunter and Wolverine vs. Sabretooth, will be revealed on September 7 at 11:30 a.m. PDT. The game that isn’t like XCOM but looks a lot like XCOM in a superhero suit was revealed during Gamecom 2021 and is set to release in 2022. Platforms haven’t yet been revealed, but there’s still a lot to learn about this one, so stay tuned.

About the author

Jonathan Moore

Jonathan Moore is the Editor-in-Chief of GameSkinny and has been writing about games since 2010. With over 1,200 published articles, he's written about almost every genre, from city builders and ARPGs to third-person shooters and sports titles. While patiently awaiting anything Dino Crisis, he consumes all things Star Wars. He has a BFA in Creative Writing and an MFA in Creative Writing focused on games writing and narrative design. He's previously been a newspaper copy editor, ad writer, and book editor. In his spare time, he enjoys playing music, watching football, and walking his three dogs. He lives on Earth and believes in aliens, thanks to Fox Mulder.