While Marvel's Avengers was met with something of a tepid response, Crystal Dynamic and Square Enix definitely have some longterm plans for the game, including the addition of new characters. Recently, the arrival of Hawkeye was pushed back, but he's among a handful of characters who have been leaked today.
As you can see in the Twitter thread below, artwork and various other assets for the game (including missions and other planned skins) have found their way online.
Black Panther has received an overhaul that should mean he fits well into the aesthetic of Marvel's Avengers, while War Machine looks very similar to his Marvel Cinematic Universe counterpart. That's not overly surprising because while the game doesn't take place in the world, it's clearly inspired by it (right down to the voice performances from some cast members).
The response to the title hasn't been overwhelmingly positive, and its online component definitely hasn't managed to live up to the hype. However, the addition of characters like these should reignite interest in Marvel's Avengers, and freshen up what it feels like to head into action as this team.
Check out the leaked artwork below:
Click on the "Next" button below to find out who we
think could be the villain in the next's Avengers game!
We meet Hank Pym in Marvel's Avengers, but thanks to A.I.M., if he tries to change size, he'll die.
That's bound to have pushed the one-time Ant-Man to the edge, but he's been focusing his efforts on repurposing A.I.M. tech to create a robotic assistant. There aren't any Ultron hints just yet, but it definitely feels like things could head in that direction, with Hank potentially heading down a villainous path.
The advantage to a villain like this, of course, is that Earth's Mightiest Heroes can be pitted against Ultron's robot army, something which should be as much fun as bashing A.I.M.'s forces.
By the time the game reaches its end, S.H.I.E.L.D. has been reformed, but it's clearly going to take some time for the world to put their faith in them following the harrowing events of A-Day.
The emergence of a rival unit like H.A.M.M.E.R. has a tonne of potential, and while we doubt it would be led by Norman Osborn, there are other possible villains who could take his place (maybe even a returning M.O.D.O.K. as we never actually see him die following the final battle).
Regardless of whose in charge, if this leads to the introduction of the Dark Avengers, even better!
8. The Kree
M.O.D.O.K. unexpectedly takes charge of a Kree Sentinel during his final confrontation with The Avengers, and a mid-credits scene shows some sort of probe being shot from that into outer space.
Common sense says that's being used to alert the Kree, something that could very well bring them to Earth...or send Earth's Mightiest Heroes into the cosmos. Either option is massively exciting, especially if it leads to a loose adaptation of the classic Kree/Skrull War from the comic books.
Pitting The Avengers against Kree technology would also be a big upgrade from A.I.M.'s forces.
7. Masters Of Evil
There have been a number of iterations of the Masters of Evil, and Crystal Dynamics could quite literally take their pick when it comes to which comic book villains assemble to take on The Avengers.
Usually, their main motive is to defeat or humiliate Earth's Mightiest Heroes, and past leaders have included both Baron Zemos, Ultron, the Mandarin, Klaw, Doctor Octopus, Egghead, the Crimson Cowl, Machinesmith, Whirlwind, the Hood, Jonas Harrow, Max Fury and Lightmaster. We'd be happy to see any one of them take charge, especially as they could all be reinvented for the game.
Plus, this would be the ideal place for the Abomination to make his return to target The Hulk.
While the world now knows that The Avengers aren't evil, it probably wouldn't take much for the public to root for a superhero team who weren't involved with the catastrophe which took place on A-Day.
That's where the Thunderbolts could come in; introduced as a replacement of sorts for Earth's Mightiest Heroes, players could be given the opportunity to actually take control of them too, only for it to later be revealed that they're villains posing as superheroes (just like in the comic books).
This could actually tie into the aforementioned Masters of Evil perfectly, and make for a fun story.
5. The Inhumans
Terrigen was obviously a massive part of Marvel's Avengers, though its origins were never fully explored. There were certainly hints with that Kree Sentinel appearing, but a sequel has the opportunity to take a deep dive into who and what the Inhumans are and what that means for these heroes.
Arriving on Earth to potentially take their fellow Inhumans "home" to Attilan, Ms. Marvel could find herself stuck in the middle of the two teams, and it would be even better if it means players are able to take control of Black Bolt and company (just imagine being able to unleash his formidable powers).
While we're sure they would eventually team-up, the Inhumans could make great antagonists to start with.
4. Doctor Doom
While Doctor Doom is a Fantastic Four villain, there's no reason to suspect that he would be off limits to Crystal Dynamics for the Marvel's Avengers sequel. Taking the team to Latveria would be a blast, and battling Doombots of varying power would make for a nice substitute for A.I.M.
Beyond that, there's probably a great story which could be told if The Avengers were to invade a sovereign nation, and giving this sequel an even greater international feel really wouldn't hurt.
Doom is one of the Marvel Universe's greatest villains, so it would be great to see him get his due here, especially if it coincides with him making his Marvel Cinematic Universe arrival as well.
3. Kang The Conqueror
Time-travel was mentioned in the mid-credits scene, and if Crystal Dynamics can effectively breathe new life into M.O.D.O.K., then the same could no doubt be the case for Kang the Conqueror too.
The prospect of travelling through time as Earth's Mightiest Heroes is a thrilling one - just picture revisiting World War II as Captain America - and that global "War Table" could be replaced for one that allows players to pick which time period they want to visit for various missions.
Kang is a great villain, and one we haven't seen anywhere near enough of on screen thus far.
2. Black Order
Sent to Earth by Thanos to weaken Earth's Mightiest Heroes, we got to know the Black Order in Avengers: Infinity War, but they didn't receive anywhere near as much screentime as they deserved.
For the most part, they were overlooked in that movie, and so a game like this could really do them justice and flesh out their respective story arcs. Each of them would make for great boss battles too, something the first game definitely would have benefited from utilising more often.
Of course, if we're getting the Black Order, there's a certain someone who should join them...
Yes, we've seen plenty of the Mad Titan on the big screen, but that doesn't mean a new spin couldn't be put on him in a sequel to Marvel's Avengers. After all, there are plenty of stories to pick from to base this game off, and the Infinity Stones are always a fun concept to play around with.
Having to track them down in heist-style missions could be a blast, and a nice way to shake things up in a sequel and potentially move away from some of the concepts introduced in the first game.
There's a reason Thanos is so beloved, and upgrading Earth's Mightiest Heroes with cosmic tech should be epic...particularly if it ends up involving the Infinity Stones in some way, shape, or form.