Impressions: MultiVersus Closed Alpha

How is Warner Bros and the Multitude of Madness looking?

Last weekend the Closed Alpha for MultiVersus ended and it’s time to look back and see if its more than a Smash Bros clone. First of all, let’s take a look at what characters were available for playing…

Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, and Harley Quinn (DC); Shaggy (Scooby-Doo); Bugs Bunny (Looney Tunes); Arya Stark (Game of Thrones); Jake the Dog and Finn the Human (Adventure Time); Steven Universe and Garnet (Steven Universe); Tom & Jerry; and an original creature named Reindog.

Now we know that other fighters are planned, and some are already confirmed that didn’t appear in the Closed Alpha like The Iron Giant so we know that the Open Beta coming in July will no doubt have other fighters and other arenas to battle in. It was a bit frustrating that you had to earn enough in-game currency to unlock a few of the characters in the roster but it did give me a chance to go through the other characters and find out what sets it apart from Smash Bros.

Maps consisted of The Batcave (DC), Tree Fort (Adventure Time), Scooby’s Haunted Mansion (Scooby-Doo), Trophy’s E.D.G.E., Trophy’s E.D.G.E. 2, Classic 3 Platform, and Training Room. It was pretty fun to see these classic areas turned into battle arenas and its not simply visual as the arenas will change based on what happens in them, for instance the Batmobiles parked will fall off if hit too many times.

Combat itself is typical of Smash, but it does have some key differences like if you are playing in a Team then you can essentially help each other out with abilities, depending on what type of fighter you have. This can vary from shielding your teammate with Reindog to using Wonder Woman’s whip to reel them in from a fall.

Each character also has 3 slots for Perks, which work like Smash Bros Ultimate’s Spirits, and this is where it will take a while to unlock them, as they seem to be randomly generated on which you get. Also, each character needs individually levelling up too and there are variants of each character that can also be unlocked.

The visuals are cartoon-ish by design and it works well, even with bizarre characters like Arya Stark joining the fray (no pun intended, honest!) and it seemed to run at a consistent framerate which is impressive for a closed alpha.

Overall, I was impressed with the quality of the closed alpha and while it clearly takes its props from Smash Bros, it does manage to feel just unique enough to call itself its own game. I’m looking forward to seeing the rest of the roster and to see if MultiVersus has what it takes to compete with Smash. Time will tell, but I’m cautiously optimistic…