The Avengers, X-Men, Fantastic Four, and LEGO. What could go wrong? When LEGO Marvel Super Heroes was announced for practically every console in existence not named the Nintendo Wii, fans were stoked. After all, TT Games had done DC Comics fans proud with LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes. Did they do the same with the more popular (at least commercially) comic brand, known as the “House of Ideas”?
For the most part, yes.
LEGO Marvel Super Heroes puts you in the middle of a storyline that includes practically every great Marvel Comics character – with some exceptions, like Nightcrawler, much to our comic guy Greg’s disdain – as you fight a huge roster of villains for possession of “cosmic bricks” that once made up the Silver Surfer‘s surfboard. You’ll visit many classic Marvel locations like the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier, Latveria, Stark Tower, and an impressively scaled LEGO New York.
Graphically, LEGO Marvel Super Heroes doesn’t look too different from the last couple of LEGO games, but that’s not a bad thing. As far as the gameplay goes, it’s mostly unchanged: you use your powers to break things, build things, and collect things, so you can unlock more characters and powers to do the whole thing all over again. “Complicated” it’s definitely not. Fun it definitely is, and the voice acting works well, with Avengers alum Clark Gregg reprising his role as Agent Phil Coulson, with Stan Lee, Tara Strong, and Nolan North (among others) providing some strong work. Plus, who doesn’t love the prospect of a LEGO version of Howard the Duck?
There are some negatives, of course, chief among them the fact that – for now – PC gamers can’t unlock Steam Achievements. It’s a problem that TT Games is aware of, and they say there’s a patch incoming, but one would think such a simple thing would be ready at launch.
Also, puzzles are rather simplistic and don’t require much thought – true, this is a game that’s probably aimed at the younger set, but it’d be nice to have a bit more of a challenge. The gameplay hasn’t changed much from prior superhero-themed games like LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes, but they seem to have made flying less intuitive than it was in Batman‘s game, as I had more trouble maneuvering Iron Man around than I ever did with Superman. For whatever reason, the open-world segments of LEGO New York don’t feel as cool as LEGO Gotham City, but that may just be me. Finally, and I know this is a nitpick, but some of the jokes – particularly from Captain America, one of my favorite characters, make me roll my eyes and heave a sigh of consternation.
There’s more content already out there for LEGO Marvel Super Heroes, too, as the game launched alongside some DLC based on this November’s Thor: The Dark World. More DLC content will be coming soon.
When all the bricks are down, LEGO Marvel Super Heroes is exactly what it sets out to be: a fun, family-friendly romp through the Marvel Comics universe. It’s not perfect, but it’s definitely not bad.