Like with most Gacha games, the one game mode that truly tests your team in Marvel Strike Force is PvP. Technically, there are a few different ways to challenge other players in MSF, all of which reward you with yummy currencies, new heroes, and gear. But before you get fill your reserves with all kinds of Credit, you must first put together a noteworthy team of characters.
The squads that we’ve included below should give you a rough idea of which heroes you should prioritize for PvP encounters. Since these are the very best teams in the game, it might take some time before you can obtain and fully upgrade the heroes/villains mentioned here. Because of this, we’ve also included a more early-game, F2P-friendly squad for both Offensive and Defensive PvP.
Top 5 Teams for Arena Offense, Alliance War, and Blitz
At first, you’ll likely use the same group of key early-game heroes for both offense and defense (in the Arena). However, this should change as you enter the mid- and late-game, since you will need specialized characters to emerge victorious from increasingly challenging battles.
When you play on the offensive (in the Arena, Alliance War, and Blitz), the essential thing to bear in mind is that you are attacking other player’s teams, but the latter are actually played by the AI. This gives you a significant advantage and allows you to prioritize certain high-DPS heroes for (near-)OTK combos.
X-Men Improved: Colossus, Psylocke, Storm, Ultron, Phoenix
This setup allows you to take full advantage of both Colossus’ unbelievable tankiness and Psylocke’s DPS potential, especially against teams who primarily rely on debuffs. Meanwhile, Storm can slow enemies down and deal up to 550% AoE damage to all enemies when charged properly, Phoenix can provide support, cleanses, and heals, and Ultron can, well, do his thing. If all the AoE doesn’t kill the enemy team on time, Ultron’s ultimate – the hardest hitting single-target ability in the game – will certainly finish the job.
Fantastic Four: Invisible Woman, The Thing, Namor, Mister Fantastic, Human Torch
This squad relies heavily on control abilities and Namor. Although the Fantastic Four do fairly well by themselves, they can become an absolute nightmare when paired with Namor. This hero’s passive increases the damage of his teammates by 20% and their armor by up to 30%. What’s more, he gains a host of additional benefits when used in an Alliance War. In this PvP mode, his ultimate always crits and decreases the speed of enemies, while his passive grants Deflect and Offense Up to his Fantastic Four allies.
Mutants: Juggernaut, Captain Marvel, Magneto, Ultron, Pyro
The Brotherhood of Mutants is a squad where Magneto plays a central role. On his own, this character is only so-and-so, but his traits and abilities work wonders to enable specific allies. For example, both Juggernaut and Pyro gain additional DPS when paired with Magneto, while Magneto’s position-shifting abilities can be used to boost the damage of AoEs such as Juggernaut’s ultimate. At the same time, Captain Marvel is a hard-hitting, self-healing, unstoppable beast, while Ultron can be used to clean up any enemies left standing.
(Honorable Mention/F2P-Friendly) Defenders: Ms. Marvel, Spider-Man, Punisher, Daredevil, Iron Fist
A team of Defenders is most suitable for Arena Defense (which we will look at in just a moment), but can also be used successfully when in order to attack others. Granted, this squad is not as powerful as the ones we’ve mentioned above, but, then again, it is much easier to obtain, which is always a plus. In offensive situations, the team relies mostly on Punisher’s hard-hitting AoE and on Ms. Marvel’s decent synergies with characters that have both the Hero and the Brawler trait.
Top 3 Teams for Arena Defense
You might enjoy attacking other players and punishing the weak AI with powerful, well-placed synergies, but so does everyone else. Unfortunately, the hard truth is that your team is just as silly when it is challenges by others, which makes Arena Defense a bit difficult to plan for. Nevertheless, there are a few teams that even the AI can use to perform consistently better when under attack. These include the following three:
X-Men Improved: Colossus, Psylocke, Captain Marvel, Ultron, Phoenix
X-Men squads have been everywhere since Psylocke was introduced to the game and it doesn’t look like the trend is about to stop. This team is quite similar to its offensive counterpart, but it replaces Storm with Psylocke. The change is mostly due to the fact that Storm is only useful so long as she is charged properly and the AI will usually play her extremely poorly. Captain Marvel, on the other hand, has plenty of self-sustain and is able to deal tremendous amounts of damage even on defense.
SHIELD: Shield Security, Shield Trooper, Nick Fury, Agent Coulson, Shield Medic/Operative
This team might not look like much, since it uses only 2 heroes proper and 3 minions, but appearances are deceiving. Agent Coulson is an absolute beat on Defense, where most of his abilities are enhanced. For example, his passive ability grants 40% additional HP to all allies, as well as immunity to debuffs at the start of combat. At the same time, Nick Fury brings his own significant contribution through consistent support, heals, and extra speed for allies. While Shield Security serves as the tank, Shield Trooper is the main DPS source, and Shield Medic offers additional sustain. Unfortunately, both Nick Fury and Agent Coulson are extremely expensive, albeit for good reason.
(Honorable Mention/F2P-friendly) Defenders: Luke Cage, Punisher, Iron Fist, Jessica Jones, Daredevil
The classic Defender dream-team, this group of heroes can be obtained and upgraded fairly easily during the early-game (especially when compared to other options mentioned here). All of the characters used in this build (and Jessica Jones, especially) are solid all by themselves. Furthermore, Luke Cage gains additional Defense and Iron Fist gets a chance to heal on his passive ability when used together with other Defenders.
Naturally, there are at least a dozen other team compositions that consistently perform well in PvP matches. What we have presented here is a selection based on our experience with the game and on our preferences. Sadly, many of these heroes require intensive farming or buckets of real currency to unlock and upgrade. But there is some good news. If you’re playing Marvel Strike Force on PC with BlueStacks, there are several nifty tools that you can use to make the daily grind a little bit faster. Why not try it out?