LEGO MARVEL SUPER HEROES [Face-Off]: Build, True Believers! Build!
What a week in superhero video games! And thus it begins…now.
“Monsignor” Travis Moody: Why are LEGO games so frustrating? Aren’t these games supposed to be made for kids? Why am I having such a tough time with them? In Arkham City, I could solve every riddle, accomplish every side mission, and learn every tactic. But, when it comes to finding the missing piece or last puzzle of a level in the land of LEGO Marvel Super Heroes, I suck harder than Harley Quinn in a funhouse. (Lollipops, peeps.) Not surprisingly, this game offers the entire Marvel makeover: nearly the entire Marvel Universe (150 characters if you want to count random S.H.I.E.L.D., Hydra, and A.I.M. agents), voice actors ranging from Agent Coulson’s own Clark Gregg to the multi-faceted Troy Baker (Hawkeye and Loki), and even a score resembling music from the films. It’s the closest thing we’re going to get to a Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3, and at this rate, perhaps ever. What’s your take, Rev?
“Reverend” Joe Rivera: Oh, you don’t suck, Moody! At least not at this game…haha.. Call that an Injustice. I mean, yes, these LEGO games do seem to be more geared towards kids, but old chaps like us (and we do look good for our age, don’t we?) can still enjoy these games. Since I look at them more as little interactive spoofs of popular movies and comics, I chiefly play these games for the humor element. And with that being said……
I’ve always enjoyed the LEGO games (Star Wars, Batman), so there was no denying my excitment for a Marvel title. Oh Troy, I love that I can identify his dashing voice right off the bat. So many characters to choose from, even useless ones like Tony Stark as “Regular Man“, (thank you Honest Trailers, hardy har har), and J. Jonah Jameson and his newspaper weapons. And I’m with you, this is probably our MUA3, just ya know…without the extra two players. Would have been nice to have four players at once, but at the same time, that split screen was absolutely annoying. The way the split kept moving was very distracting, especially when you want to aim at targets. Remember? Most of the time I was like “Moody, you’re too far away!”
Moody: That’s what all my ex-girlfriends kept telling me. Hey, I live where… oh… yes, the camera angles in L.M.S.H. are absolutely pathetic. I spent more time fighting the angles than the villains at hand…or The Hand. And, that didn’t matter much because the A.I. in the game wasn’t very good either. Well, the Super-Villains were challenging as far as throwing distractions at you were concerned, such as Doom and Magneto getting their usual mindless henchman and b-listers (the “Master of Minds…Mastermind“) to do the dirty work for them. Wait.. wait just a second! Are we really breaking down a darn LEGO game? What’s wrong with us?
Rev: I know, right?!?! Why are we nitpicking this? It’s a goddamn Lego game, this isn’t Grand Theft Lego V! Can’t really expect much from a puzzle/beat ’em up game. Speaking of GTA, I did enjoy the open world sandbox portion of Marvel Super Heroes. And like GTA, you can steal cars and beat up civilians….though, I thought we were playing as superheroes. Funny thing is, the good people of Manhattan have no problem shedding their vehicle to a man whose destiny is to save the world. Time for this Joe to start suiting up around town and borrow a Maserati or two, but I just don’t think that would cut it in La La Land. Cool thing about this LEGO NYC is that both players can split up and do whatever they like. Silver Surfing around the Statue of Liberty? No problem. Hitting the local coffee shops with Carnage — why not? I thought that Travellers Tales did a wonderful job doing exactly as their surname suggests with this version of the Big Apple.
Moody: See, Rev, I’m actually going to take the opposite approach, and that’s primarily because I enjoyed the heck (see how we’re not using cuss words here) out of GTA V and, at the current moment, my open exploratory sandbox-mind can only be saved for Pirates and Chicago. I know New York City is the home of Spider-Man and all his Amazing Friends, but if I wanna open world, I’d rather have Trevor breaking into Inland Empire saloons than LEGO-racing Toad with Ghost Rider. OK…that last notion actually sounded awesome. But you catch my drift. With that, I do feel Marvel’s less sophisticated heroes (as opposed to DC’s brooding group) make for a far better LEGO experience. Instantly, “Hulk Smash Bricks” is a dime; Thor using his mighty toy Mjolnir to batter everything and anything — in addition to flying and lightning strikes — makes him the perfect LEGO warrior; and watching Reed Richards ever-so-Fantastically form into drills, cranes and anything you can throw a Lego at was a treat. Other than when he turns into an annoying teacup, of course.
Lance Paul “The Apostle”: Tag me in boss! Tag me in! As the resident aficionado of all things LEGO (least when it comes to gaming, ha), I have to say I really enjoyed this game. It took everything I love about Marvel and Lego’s and mashed them up quite perfectly. Sure the camera angles were as janky as playing Spider-Man 2, but once you got into the action the scenarios made up for any downsides. Who hasn’t wanted to play as the Fantastic Four and face a rather popular flying Green Osborn, or revisit your early comic-reading childhood past and see 90’s Jean and Scott again?
Now, I will admit due to having this pesky problem called jet lag I was forced to jump in halfway, so I didn’t get the pleasure of the meaningless beginning levels like Jose (don’t call me Mrs. Baker) Rivera did. Thanks again for starting the game for me, Rev, and leaving before all the fun episodes. As someone who just came off the rehashing adventures of LEGO Lord of the Rings, I knew what I was getting myself into. Though I was a bit surprised by the sandbox approach at first, the Marvel Apostle came to enjoy the feature as it made the game more interactive. At least this way, I felt like I was in the Marvel Lego world at all times. I also enjoyed the different locales and mass of characters to interact with and play as. Who hasn’t wished for a Thor, Wolverine, Capt. America and Human Torch movie combo? I have, and I played the hell out of that! Wolverine is flame retardant thanks to his adamantium bones! It was the best part of the level seeing Barebones-Wolvie kick ass!
Moody: So…Chris Hemsworth, Hugh Jackman, Chris Evans, and…Chris Evans?
Apostle: So true! Well if all the rumors are true we will soon see our first Black Human Torch. I am not opposed as I’m sure Johhny and Sue’s Mom didn’t think that one night stand with Luke Cage would have such lasting effects. Who am I to judge! I’m guessing they had as much fun as our True Believers did turning themselves into a Mr. Fantastic tea kettle. I’m sure Mrs. Storm just loves this effect on date night!
Rev: Out of all the things Mr. Richards can turn into, we get a bleeping TEA KETTLE!?!? Who’s idea was that? Marvel? Lego? One question……why? This is worse than a Bat-credit card! Though, you just know if Troy voiced the tea kettle, then I could deal with it. In fact, he was the primarily reason I preferred to play as Hawkeye most of the time, in addition to blowing up silver Lego’s with exploding arrows. Jeremy who?
Oh, did anyone else notice some of the glitches in this game? Characters would get stuck in walls or run around without moving. Found myself restarting. Let’s not forget the controls, with a lot of button mashing was involved; when it came to taking out enemies, the action felt a bit slow and unresponsive. Jumping to the graphics, they were a treat. Like the rest of the Lego games, you really felt like you were controlling little shiny plastic toys. Other than that, it still brought me back to my childhood because LMSH had my two favorite things: Lego’s and Deadpool! The Brick With the Blowhole? I’m trying! Thank you, Nolan North. Troy, don’t get jealous.
Moody: I blame Stan for the Kettle. A “Kiddie” Pool — that’s definitely where a strong creative mind comes in handy. And Traveller’s Tales def proved a robust creative streak with many of these games, and nothing could have been cooler than conjuring up their own interactive M.U. — seeing how we’re not allowed thus yet to see them hang together at the silverscreen. Glitches and bugs def take precedence once again in a LEGO game, as the restart level option will sooner or later end up your only pal, especially when peeps like the cooler than cool Iceman get stuck…in a glacier of ice. Yup, the hell. Controlling these little buggers is actually smoother than Lego Batman 2, though they still haven’t rid of the clunky flying mechanics.
LMSHis also a pretty enough game on the 360, making me wonder why the rush for next-gen. Even with the new hardware, I can’t imagine LEGO’s looking any better than this.
Apostle: Even through all these glitches and rushed game flaw, LMSH appealed to my inner child apostle. The offhand 20-year old comic remarks, or the reappearance of an obscure character from Marvel’s rich lore (H.E.R.B.I.E.?) made this game a keeper. I agree with you though, Minister Moods, the glitches and bugs also made me…moody. Once you control any of the flying characters you will notice the haphazard flight patterns your begotten lil Lego will take. Gentleman (and I use that loosely), what was your favorite character and your least favorite Lego hero to use?
Moody: Thor was definitely my fav…but though we’ve yet to witness the DLC packages with our press copy of the game, I’m going to say Rocket Raccoon…RIGHT? But it was great fun symbiote-suplexing LEGO village hipsters into stumbling bricks with the likes of Venom. I thought Black Widow having a Lego gun was funny, but I got bored with Captain America’s “we didn’t start the fire” shield protection — and I don’t mean the agency. I also can’t wait to ride along the Hudson on a bicycle with…Galactus.
Apostle: Oh man, spending money on some DLC is going to be tempting with the Guardians of the Galaxy’s Rocket! My favorite, believe it or not, was Spider-Man. The little I played with him was so much fun swinging around the invisible Lego walls and being a pest.
Overall, your favorite Apostle would give LEGO Marvel Super Heroes a 3.5 on the 5-Bible scale. When you delve into a Lego game, you know what you are getting your self into: mindless button mashing, age appropriate puzzles mixed with your favorite pop culture (in this case, super) heroes, questionable camera placement, etc. Be it Indiana Jones swinging from Lego to Lego, or Luke Skywalker battling dark side imbued bricks. We buy them and we will continue to buy them, no matter the glitches. Because at the end of the day, we play Lego games to escape “the real world” games like GTA that suck several violent hours of our time up. The beauty of a Lego game is you can jump in, play a level and go about your day. You escape into a mindless Lego terrain, and, this time, full of your favorite Marvel Super Heroes like Aunt May and Stan Lee! Uh.. here just hoping that “LEGO Titanic” comes out soon!
Rev: Well, okay I know I nitpicked this game, but it was hella fun to play, had amazing graphics, and much like you, Apostle, it appealed to my inner-child, as well. LEGO Marvel offers a ton of replay value with the huge variety of characters, and going back into certain levels to unlock secrets in which you couldn’t do with the previous. So, because of this, I was going to knock off one and a half-bibles, but instead I’m putting that half bible back. The Rev will give LMSH 4 Bibles.
And to answer your question, Lance, I’m going to go with Hawkeye for, not only Mr. Baker, but for his usefulness of the bunch. LEGO Barton has a good combo of melee and range attacks, can shoot ropes, shoot arrows for swinging, and his exploding arrows will surely come in handy when it comes to those annoying silver boulders. I don’t particularly like Hawkeye as a character, so that says a lot.
Moody: Then your hipster ass is clearly not reading Matt Fraction’s Hawkeye! I promise that would be your favorite comic…ever (watches Jose run and stumble on his way to Meltdown Comics…). To wrap, as much as I was dying to play this LEGO Marvel.. I can’t help but feel a haunting, hallowed breeze whisking over my shoulder from a little happy place we call Gotham. That “inner-child” you’re both referring to must have died when the Thomas and Martha perished, despite the bliss of present day Jean ‘n Scott working side by side once again. I just had too many problems with a game that covers the previous LEGO entities, even with a stupendous Marvel skin. With that said, this is the perfect game to pick up and play with your child (niece, nephew, immature grandmom). Here’s to hoping your very own lil Merry Marvel Marching Society responds to it the same way we did when we read our first comic book event. 3 Bibles (rounding the final score to a satisfying 3.5 outta 5). Excelsior, gentleman!
LEGO Marvel Super Heroes for the Xbox 360, PS3, Wii-U, PS Vita, Nintendo DS and PC is available now. Xbox One and PS4 editions available at system launch.