Marvel's Avengers beta contents, heroes, and when you can play

(Image credit: Marvel/Square Enix)

The Marvel's Avengers beta is almost here, and the developers behind the game have shared new details about what it will let you play.

Before we get to the new Marvel's Avengers beta details from the latest War Table Stream, let's address the most important question: when and how can you play? It all depends on what platform you're playing on and whether or not you pre-order, so here's the full breakdown.

Marvel's Avengers beta dates

  • August 7 - PS4 pre-order customers can start playing the beta
  • August 14 - All PS4 owners can start playing the open beta, and PC and Xbox One pre-order customers can start playing the beta
  • August 21 - PC and Xbox One players can join in the open beta as well

Here's how to get your Marvel's Avengers pre-order in if you want to start playing the beta ASAP.

Marvel's Avengers beta content

Once you get into the beta, you'll be able to try out a broad selection of the game's missions and modes. You'll start with the initial Golden Gate Bridge demo, which introduces how a variety of heroes play and leads up to the "A-Day" disaster, kicking off this particular Marvel universe's main plot.

The developers say you should expect to spend about 25 minutes playing through the Golden Gate Bridge demo, and that's just the start. After that, you can follow the story to two new Hero Missions starring Ms. Marvel and the Hulk: one set in a lush forest of the Pacific Northwest, and another where they head to the Russian tundra in search of a secret SHIELD facility.

On top of the single-player Hero Missions, you'll be able to unlock a sampling of stages that are playable in multiplayer (or with an AI-controlled team, if you prefer). Here's a quick breakdown of the Marvel's Avengers beta stages, each of which can be played with Iron Man, Ms. Marvel, Black Widow, and the Hulk.

HARM Rooms: Three wave-based training room exercises that start easy and get very hard. If you complete all the HARM rooms in the beta, you'll be rewarded with a special nameplate that carries over into the full game - as well as a special Hulk Smashers Pickaxe to use in Fortnite (no, really).

War Zones: Five full-length multiplayer-centric missions that send you around the world to take down big threats as part of a team. You can also discover points of interest with puzzles to solve and gear (as well as unlockable comics) to collect.

Drop Zones: Smaller, faster counterparts to War Zones that send you straight into action for one big encounter.

Whatever modes you play, you'll unlock new gear for your heroes and level them up. Each hero will only have the first of their three full skill sheets unlocked for the beta, but that should still give you plenty to explore.

We talked to Crystal Dynamics and Square Enix Montreal about how Marvel's Avengers wants to be the live service superhero game for the next generation - and that starts with adding Hawkeye as the first post-launch hero. 

Connor Sheridan

I got a BA in journalism from Central Michigan University - though the best education I received there was from CM Life, its student-run newspaper. Long before that, I started pursuing my degree in video games by bugging my older brother to let me play Zelda on the Super Nintendo. I've previously been a news intern for GameSpot, a news writer for CVG, and now I'm a staff writer here at GamesRadar.