Sunday, March 6, 2016

The Leaden Finger Gamer’s Review – Lego Marvel’s Avengers

Lego Marvel’s Avengers’ is the second video game to feature Marvel Comics’ superheroes as Lego figures. I liked playing it overall, but it had its frustrations. For some of its puzzles, that need to be solved to progress, it wasn’t particularly clear what to do. I looked up how to open a gate on the first level. I looked up how to beat Loki on the second level. I definitely had to look up how the hell I got out of Manhattan. I never figured out what exactly the floating ‘A’ logos were for, or how to use them. And then there were a couple of times when I got stuck in exactly the wrong spot and repeatedly died until I must have tilted my controller just enough to escape the endless death loop.
The story that I played was mainly a condensed version of Marvel’s first Avengers movie, but spliced with other scenes. The first scene replays the Avengers’ assault on the HYDRA Fortress from ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’. A few levels in, after Captain America meets Nick Fury, there is a solo Cap and Bucky level which is a flashback to the World War II scenes of ‘Captain America: The First Avenger’. Then we see the various heroes join up, but wait … I thought they’d already met? And after the first movie’s scenes had ended the game credits rolled, even though there looks to be several more scenes from the second movie – but that’s where I left it.
As a long-time Avengers fan I hoped that the game may actually draw upon my much-loved Avengers comic universe, and we would see lots of these Avengers, and Kang the Conqueror, and that type of stuff. The game though is set firmly in Marvel’s Cinematic Universe. Lego’s first Marvel super heroes game – ‘Lego Marvel Super Heroes’ – turns out to have been more the game for the comic book fans.  
While the cut scenes are basically straight replays of Marvel’s movies there are a few funny touches that the game puts on them. The best is the first meeting between the Black Widow and Bruce Banner/the Hulk, in which the Widow assures Banner that she is alone, despite far more evidence than the movie to the contrary. Loki is also far less subtle than in the movie about his intentions for the Hulk when he is brought on to the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier. And there are the omnipresent shakes.
In summary: ‘Lego Marvel Super Heroes’ is better, but it would take a fair bit to go wrong for me not to like an Avengers video game.

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