A LEGO game to marvel at?
DC or Marvel. As a child of the 90's, it wasn't as big of a battle with kids my age which one was better as, say, Nintendo or Sega. However, the struggle, as some say, was indeed real. While I loved Batman and still do to this day, the collection of superheroes that Marvel Comics has established over the years always appealed to me more.
LEGO has had multiple successes taking both DC's and Marvel's characters and putting them into game form. Now, LEGO has returned with another chapter in its Marvel line of games with LEGO Marvel's Avengers. As someone who hasn't seen any of the Marvel Cinematic Universe films yet, I was understandably confused by the organization of the plot of the game. LEGO Marvel's Avengers's main source for providing the story elements for the game itself come from the two Avengers movies. The slight bouncing around between Marvel's Avengers and Age of Ultron was a bit perplexing, but now after reading more about the movies, I know that the game starts with the opening of Age of Ultron before delving into a flashback from Captain America: The First Avenger, then goes to a more orderly structure, going from the first Avengers movie to Age of Ultron.
|Looks like the gang is all here and ready to rock and roll.|
Most LEGO games released in the past few years have taken on a fully explore-able hub, filled with usually simple environmental puzzles (e.g. have Thor use his lightning to charge a panel which then opens a chest revealing your prize) or a series of environmental puzzles that unlock Gold Bricks. LEGO Marvel's Avengers has more than a handful of these instead of just one overworld hub. However, while there are different vistas and locales to visit, such as Asgard, Tony Stark's mansion in Malibu, Washington D.C., and more, Manhattan still remains the largest hub with the most things to do.
|A relief to me was that the flight controls for characters like Iron Man are vastly improved over the last LEGO Marvel game. Makes jetting around this game's hubs much more enjoyable.|
The aforementioned fifteen levels that LEGO Marvel's Avengers possesses are nothing new to anyone who has played a post-2005 LEGO game. You move around contained stages, essentially destroying every object in the area with your Marvel character's fists or other form of weaponry, using specific broken LEGO pieces to form new structures to solve environmentally based puzzles. In the first run of a level, you won't be able to collect everything it has to offer. This encourages replaying levels through Free Play, which allows you to call in any unlocked Marvel superhero, villain, or other character to interact with level elements that your original characters weren't able to do on your first run of the level.
|Careful, Iron Man, this ain't no jolly green giant you're dealing with.|
|Not one to run from a fight, Captain America simply lost his sense of direction here.|
|Perform two-character combat moves to slightly alleviate the otherwise boring fighting in this game.|
There are 250 Gold Bricks to find-- many gained from discovering them through solving simple puzzles around the various hubs of LEGO Marvel's Avengers, while others come from completing the story missions, collecting enough LEGO studs in a given level, finding all 10 mini-kits in a level, and helping to rescue Stan Lee from some sort of perilous and compromising position. Then, there are the Red Bricks to find, 15 of them, that unlock bonus cheats, as well as all of the characters and vehicles you can unlock. If you're a fan of collecting stuff, and doing so in a fun way, you'll find a lot to love and enjoy with LEGO Marvel's Avengers-- just like any other LEGO game, really.
LEGO Marvel's Avengers might seem a step back compared to the innovative and fresh new things the developer's own LEGO Dimensions is doing, but if you're looking for the gaming equivalent of comfort food which is good for the whole family, then take out a controller and have a healthy helping of LEGO goodness.
[SPC Says: B-]