Warner Bros announces MultiVersus, an F2P Platform Fighter emphasizing team play

The previously leaked platform fighter project in development at Warner Bros’ games division has finally been revealed officially. MultiVersus is a platform fighter boasting a roster of various comic book, film and TV show characters including Arya Stark, Batman, Finn & Jake and more. Beyond the character selection the game is pitched to have an emphasis on 2-versus-2 team gameplay and high quality online play features. Read on for the trailer and where to learn more.

A first look at MultiVersus

The trailer for MultiVersus opens with game director Tony Huynh (Player First Games) describing it as a “competitive platform fighter” that “removes the pain points”. The first gameplay footage we see reveals the pre-game character display screen with 2 pairs of players going head to head. This is MultiVersus’ core conceit: The “doubles” format is the preferred mode of gameplay over singles, though you can play it that way too if you like he explains. Going back to addressing pain points, MultiVersus’ developer says it strives for “best in class online” and will be a free-to-play, cross-play and cross-progression enabled game.

Confirmed gameplay modes

The trailer skips over the details of alternative game modes but we can confirm 3 game modes at launch: 1v1 (singles), 2v2 (doubles) and 4-player free for all. 2v2 is intended to be the focus here but they are also teasing at adding more modes over time.

This is MultiVersus’ selling point: team based competitive gameplay at the center of the package.

Who’s on the roster?

The initial reveal confirms the following characters for MultiVersus’ roster:

  • Arya Stark
  • Batman
  • Finn
  • Garnet
  • Harley Quinn
  • Jake
  • Reindog
  • Shaggy
  • Steven Universe
  • Superman
  • Tom & Jerry (as a pair)
  • Wonder Woman

Previous leaks showed 2 more characters aside from the above, and the trailer shows two question marks on the character selection screen. Evidently WB Games is not ready to show the entire roster yet. The roster will expand after release through seasons though it’s unknown if characters will be locked behind currency grind or traditional season passes & individual purchases.

Who’s Reindog?

The little green character appearing on the select screen is an original character named Reindog who is appearing for the first time in MultiVersus. The fuzzy guy’s backstory seems to help explain the game’s crossover setting:

Fluffy Guardian of Zanifeer’s royal family and 6th wearer of the gem of power!

The world of Zanifeer was one of the first to fall victim to the Nothing during the great dimensional cataclysm. As far as most people knew, there were no survivors… except one. Reindog is a Royal Guardian – A long-lived protector of the Zanifeer royal family assigned to keep them safe. Although he looks fluffy and sweet, the heart of a warrior beats in his chest and he will do whatever it takes to protect those he loves. With the amazing powers from his gem he hopes that he can even find a way to bring back his beloved family.

The game’s roster page also categorizes Reindog as a “Support” character, where others are Tank, Bruiser, Assassin and Mage.

Netcode & cross play

Player First Games has released an extensive FAQ to go along with the reveal of the game detailing features. Here are notable answers about online play:

Will MultiVersus have rollback netcode?
Yes, MultiVersus will have dedicated server-based rollback netcode to support online gameplay.
Will MultiVersus have cross-play and cross-progression?
Yes, MultiVersus will have full cross-play and cross-progression support across all launch platforms.
The first look trailer also describes a guild system that will allow for guilds to challenge each other in competitive matches with leaderboard rankings. Cross-progression is also a rare feature in fighting games, enabling purchases to carry over between every platform you play on.

Free to play on consoles & PC

MultiVersus is advertised to release on PlayStation 4/5, Xbox One/Series and PC via Steam some time in 2022 as a free to play game though initial trailers have sparse information on how the F2P mechanics will work. The FAQ mentioned above says MultiVersus will be a “free-to-play game with in-game purchases” though it’s not immediately clear how progression works or how it affects gameplay if at all.

“Server-based rollback netcode” certainly sounds appealing but may be an issue for long distance play or regions without official server support nearby. In peer-to-peer connections both players will be impacted more or less equally by the network latency but in a server-based model there may be severe differences in quality for players further away from the server. We’ll just have to wait and see how it shakes out. Let’s talk about release platforms and purchases next.

The character levels, daily missions and premium currency icons are all pretty reminiscent of WB Games’ mobile gacha versions of Injustice and Mortal Kombat.

What is mentioned verbally is that every character has a suite of unique customization choices, but what is shown only in footage and screenshots are character level systems (the trailer shows all characters at level 1) and a perk system with icons for Offense, Defense and Utility. It’s not explained whether or not character progression will be necessary to play competitively. There are also a set of universal cosmetics to purchase such as the announcer character voice. We can see two currency icons that will be the gateway to the microtransactions.

 Releasing in 2022, playtests coming

Player First Games is calling on public testers to get feedback ahead of the 2022 launch. Sign up on the MultiVersus website with your email address to be put on the list. The official MultiVersus Twitter account is now live.

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