A week ago, Square Enix and Eidos Montreal showed off Guardians of the Galaxy at E3. While the combat seemed questionable at first, the game looks impressive and is a worthy addition to the Marvel series. The game appears to be designed primarily for single players, allowing many gamers to play it alone.
It is not unknown for Marvel games to offer only a single-player experience. Marvel's Spider-Man is a fantastic single-player game. Yet there's too much proof that this will be the case for Guardians of the Galaxy as well.
Why Guardians of the Galaxy is single-player only
In this game, the players take control of Star-Lord leading the Guardians of the Galaxy. At first glance, this game may appear similar to Marvel's Avengers, but its gameplay is very different. This was a tactical battle in which Star-Lord observed the situation, acted, and issued commands accordingly.
I don't think the combat was designed to switch characters or control other characters. There seems to be a proper leadership role for Star-Lord in the game. Eidos Montreal explained this to IGN in an interview.
To quote Guardians of the Galaxy’s Senior Creative Director, Jean-François Dugas:
"We started to discuss different opportunities like multiplayer or co-op. But we were really looking at what Guardians of the Galaxy is, and it's all about those characters. It's all about colourful personalities clashing with each other, and sometimes getting along. It's a mix of all these things, their qualities, their flaws. And we thought 'It would be freaking awesome if you could be one of the Guardians, and put you at the centre of that to be surrounded by those characters'. And this is how it came to be… You're not leading them officially, and sometimes the Guardians will make decisions on their own," he explained. "But we talk about this kind of ecosystem in which [the other Guardians of the Galaxy] can be characters on their own, make their own decisions, have their own reactions. And you, as the so-called leader, as the player, decide how to react to those things. We thought the purpose of that was really really exciting, so we dived into that to explore what it would mean for the game."
The decision is brilliant and exciting. Many superhero games allow the player to control a superhero team and do whatever he or she wants. None have explored the behavior and issues associated with working together.
As a result, Guardians of the Galaxy is a single-player action game starring Star-Lord instead of a cooperative game with a selection of heroes.
Eidos Montreal wanted to make all characters revolve around one central character. Star-Lord is the "team leader" with this system and can issue orders to his characterful, AI-controlled teammates. Even though Star-Lord is the leader, Dugas notes that the other Guardians may not always respect him. Having followed this game from the announcement, we'll keep you informed as updates come in.