After a few weeks of hints and rumors, Marvel and Disney Interactive have officially confirmed that the next phase for the hybrid toy/gaming platform is Disney Infinity 2.0: Marvel Super Heroes. Thanks to a press conference full of high-profile guests, we now know that Infinity 2.0 will bring The Avengers and some of their friends (and enemies) to the sandbox universe this fall. But aside from famous comic book heroes and villains, what else will 2.0 bring to the table for gamers?
It’s easy to get swept away in the character reveals (ranging from Captain America to Loki to Groot), but a closer look at the announcement trailer shows off some of the new features and gameplay mechanics that the expansion will introduce, many of which were at the request of players of the original. Consumers who have already sunk significant hours and dollars into the core Disney Infinity game don’t have to worry – executive producer John Vignocchi has already confirmed that all components (bases, power discs, characters and saved content) from the original game will seamlessly carry over to the new world order of 2.0. Come fall, those Disney playable characters will be looking in on some play sets much larger than what we’ve seen so far in the game.
Watching the Avengers knockout grunts on the streets of Infinity’s New York makes it clear that a lot of thought was put into how each character would move, speak, and fight like their comic book inspirations. From the iconic Captain America shield throw to Iron Man’s repulsor beam and Hulk’s smash, all of the classic attacks are there. We didn’t see a whole lot of team superpower synergy in the trailer, which is part of what makes using these characters in Marvel Ultimate Alliance or Lego Marvel Super Heroes so fun, but hopefully those capabilities will come into play at some point.
The Disney Infinity 2.0 starter pack will include the extra-sized Avengers-themed play set, two power discs, and three of the new Marvel characters. Black Widow, Thor, and Iron Man are included in the set, but players who want to assemble the whole team will need to purchase Cap, Hawkeye, and Hulk separately. Disney released a few images showcasing how the iconic comic book heroes’ style and aesthetic were modified to make them more at home in the world of Infinity. The new character models are definitely familiar enough to still feel like their film and comic counterparts, but they do look a little more like something from The Incredibles than what some fans might be used to.
The Marvel Manhattan play set will be roughly four times the game’s original play set. Part of the reason for the drastic increase in size was to compensate for the extraordinary powers of the new characters. Because some characters can now fly, it was important to spread things out and give the heroes (and villains) room to breath. The new flying system will utilize both hovering and a forward flight ability. Players can engage in combat in either of the flying varieties. Some players without the gift of flight will be able to reach similar heights with super jumps and the ability to scale large buildings (Hulk gives a pretty good demo of this in the trailer).
For gamers who prefer to stay on the ground, the new motorcycles (which Captain America puts to use in the trailer) will be a nice change of pace from the usual vehicles, representing the addition of two-wheel vehicles. Cap uses a motorcycle for a major action scene in both of his standalone movies, so it seems like the appropriate mode of transportation for him to explore the extra large new map. According to one of the new Power Discs, it looks like the bad guys will be able to burn rubber too with an unlockable Hydra Motorcycle. Now that motorcycles and Marvel are a part of the Infinity world, comic fans will likely be crossing their fingers that Wolverine and Ghost Rider eventually make an appearance with their own custom bikes.
Much like the core Infinity game, 2.0 will also offer additional characters, vehicles, and items via Power Discs. Over 80 new Power Discs will be released with 2.0, including a new series of Team-Up discs. Team-Ups will allow players to unlock partners for their heroes, such as the Winter Soldier and the Iron Patriot. Fans of of the ABC TV series Agents of SHIELD will be happy to hear that one of the discs even unlocks Agent Coulson’s custom hovercraft, Lola. We had a chance to get a sneak peak at 15 of the upcoming Power Discs and there are definitely plenty of treats coming will make the add-on content hard to resist. From the Avenjet to Falcon’s Wings to more cryptic items like Gamma Rays and the Stark Arc Reactor, it seems like Infinity has done a pretty great job of bringing some of the most iconic Marvel artifacts into the game.
Two of the most exciting previews were World War Hulk-themed Power Discs. One disc is titled World War Hulk and the other World War Hulk Sky. The Marvel event comic, World War Hulk, is all about Bruce Banner returning from intergalactic exile to seek revenge against Stark, Professor X, and the other heroes that sent him away from Earth. The Discs are likely just some kind of power-up for Hulk, but we can always hold out hope that they may give gamers all the pieces to recreate Hulk’s New York gladiator stadium in-game.
The new version of Disney Infinity returns to all of the platforms from before and also makes the jump to PS4 and Xbox One for the first time. All of the toys, discs, and components remain cross-platform compatible and as user-friendly as ever, but the sandbox game’s creation options are being overhauled to provided a faster and easier world-building experience.
The new characters and transportation options are a good start, but we’ve been saying for a long time that Disney Infinity needs to give players more to do in the sandbox if it wants to outlast Skylanders and the other similar toy/gaming platform hybrids. 2.0 aims to deliver improvements lined up to shake things up on that front. The revamped system adds new brushes for the creation of race tracks, dungeons, or whatever else players can dream up. Creators will also be able to incorporate automated builders that will generate worlds which can be edited by the player later. In addition to the world creation options, playable characters will also have in-depth skill trees to add some RPG flare to the game, and better differentiate the characters who often felt or played similar in previous sets.
E3 is just around the corner and it would be a safe bet to assume that more playable characters will be revealed during the event. There are six playable characters unveiled to far – the roster from The Avengers movie – but they confirmed that there are “more than 20 new interactive figures” coming for the Marvel expansion. Who else do you think will be on the roster? Sound off in the comments.
Disney Infinity 2.0: Marvel Super Heroes will arrive this fall.
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Source: Disney Infinity