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NetEase Games reveals free-to-play team shooter Marvel Rivals for Windows PC — and you'll have a chance to try it soon

 Marvel Rivals splash screen.
Marvel Rivals splash screen.

What you need to know

  • Marvel Rivals is a newly-revealed free-to-play 6-versus-6 team shooter being developed by NetEase Games.

  • Players assume the roles of heroes and villains from across different timelines of the Marvel universe, including Black Panther, Iron Man, Loki, Magneto, Peni Parker, and more.

  • Marvel Rivals is currently in development for Windows PC, with a closed alpha test coming in May 2024.


What if...Marvel heroes and villains fought together in a team-based shooter like Overwatch or Paladins?

That's the crux of Marvel Rivals, a free-to-play game being developed by NetEase Games in partnership with Marvel Games. Marvel Rivals lets players step into the roles of Spider-Man, Storm, Rocket Raccoon, and many more, using special abilities and team-up attacks to turn the tide against the enemy team. You can check out the announcement trailer below.

The story setup for the game is that two versions of Doctor Doom have fought until things spiraled out of control, causing multiple versions of the Marvel universe to collide in a "Timestream Entanglement."

Marvel Rivals is currently in development for Windows PC, and will be available via Steam and the Epic Games Store. A closed alpha test is coming in May 2024, which will give select the players the chance to try out an early version of the game with a handful of characters. If you're interested in signing up, you can head to the official website.

Many more Marvel games are coming

Marvel Rivals is the latest in a deluge of properties pulling on different aspects of the Marvel universe to be adapted into video games. Marvel 1943: Rise of Hydra is coming from Skybound Entertainment, and it's slated to arrive next year. Insomniac Games, having released three Spider-Man games over the past six years, continues to work on Marvel's Wolverine and other titles.

Meanwhile, Arkane Lyon, Bethesda, and Xbox recently announced Marvel's Blade, a third-person game based on the infamous Daywalker. Over at Electronic Arts, Cliffhanger Games and Motive Studio are working on a Black Panther game and an Iron Man game, respectively.

Analysis: We'll see how it goes

I don't know what I expected when I first heard the rumors of a team-based Marvel shooter being announced, but Genki Girl Galactus definitely isn't it. Still, the setup here seems fun, and I can definitely see myself trying out Marvel Rivals once it's available.

Being PC only will probably be somewhat limiting, but if this is a success, it's hard to imagine that console ports to Xbox Series X|S and PlayStation 5 won't follow. As with all these types of games, post-launch support will be critical, but there's a plethora of characters to pull from.