Category Archives: marvel super hero squad
Okay, so my buddy Ray, in order to indoctrinate me into the highly addictive world of the PS3, lent me a stack of games he thought I might be into. There were a lot of comic book based games in that stack as we are both comic book fanboys. Of course those are the games I gravitated toward first.
I had tried Marvel Super Hero Squad first as I liked the cartoon and Ray had told me it was ridiculously easy. It wasn’t. So I placed a call to my friend to ask how it worked, how I could get through a certain sequence and to bitch at him for saying it was so easy – especially since I couldn’t figure it out. Ray was out, and I gave up quickly on the game.
By the time Ray got a chance to call me back, I had ejected MSHS and put in Batman: Arkham Asylum. Compared to the previous game, B:AA is very realistic, and add to that, it’s also rather frightening. The graphics and the characters are pretty scary here, as an Arkham game probably should be. I should mention that some of the game is also in 3-D so I’m sure it’s even scarier that way. This certainly isn’t the Lego game. The intro is totally crazy town, but exactly what you would expect every time the Batman returns the Joker to Arkham. We get an inside look at something rarely seen in the comics, but we know happens on a fairly regular basis.
This game, should I ever get farther than the intro (which seems unlikely honestly, I’m not too good at this), should be a treat for me as a fan of “Batman: The Animated Series.” This game features one of the last times those voice actors have worked together. Not only does Kevin Conroy reprise Batman, Mark Hamill is the Joker, and Arleen Sorkin as Harley Quinn in a story written by Paul Dini. A treat indeed.
The phone rings, and it’s Ray. Okay, now this is important, picture this: I have put the controller down, I’m chatting with Ray on the phone, and the Batman menu is on and running. The image on the television is a shot of Batman, a close-up shot of Batman, from the neck down, the camera slowly panning up from his boots. As the camera slowly pans up, Batman is breathing heavily and flexing his muscles. No face, only the same visual cruise up his flexing sinewy body, with a bit too much lingering at the groin area. Yeah. Got it?
I look up and notice this. All I can think is “Oh my God, what the hell am I watching?” and then the real hammer hits me, “Oh my God, I’m watching Bat-pr0n!” At least there aren’t any Bat-nipples in this game… that I know of…
My first game purchase for the PlayStation 3 was via Amazon, and the choice was made because of what a big comic geek I am. I bought Marvel Ultimate Alliance at a pretty fair price. And I was thrilled when it arrived in the mail. I was going to get to play some superhero action on this here PS3 thing.
I first learned here something that will continue to haunt me for the rest of my PS3 experience. It’s complicated, and the controllers are nuts with buttons and choices. It came with a sizable instruction book, but I ignored it, as I wanted to play. I popped in the disc and was mesmerized by the graphics. Yar’s Revenge, this was not.
What the instruction manual doesn’t tell you is what the story actually is. This is a sore point for someone like me with a writer’s brain. It’s all about which buttons to push, etc. It doesn’t matter, I like the pretty colors, and hope that the introduction will give me something. It does. Nick Fury, the real one, not the Ultimate version or Samuel J. Jackson, shows up and apparently, we, the four player characters have to find him on the SHIELD Helicarrier which is under attack by what look like Ultrons.
The funny thing is, while Fury is not Ultimate, the player characters are – Captain America, Spider-Man, Wolverine and Thor. Interesting. You get to pick one, and the others are dragged along, until they die, or you switch out to one of them. It’s a lot of smash and guess until then. Wolverine and Thor seem the easiest to play, but in over an hour of play, I was never able to either clear the Helicarrier or find Fury. I will need help with this one. And I found the whole concept of collecting coins, like in Mario Bros., completely hilarious.
When I was tired of Ultimate Alliance I tried Marvel Super Hero Squad: The Infinity Gauntlet. Despite the subtitle which refers to the Jim Starlin Thanos vs. the Marvel Universe comics, this is actually a simpler kids version of the Marvel heroes – based on the hysterical cartoon for kids of all ages, and the strange (strange because I can’t imagine the Punisher or Wolverine ever smiling) action figure line. I thought this would be a better choice. It’s cartoony vs. realistic graphics, but it still looked great.
While it has the fun voices and the wink-wink humor of the cartoon, the controller continues to irritate me, and it’s just not as easy as my buddy Ray has claimed. I seem to remember him saying this took him, like twenty minutes to finish. I think I spent twenty minutes trying to decipher the instructions.
The best part for me was not playing, and letting the characters on screen hold conversations. Come on now, you can’t tell me it’s not funny when Iron Man says to the Hulk, “You’re very green, you know that?” or when Hulk counters with “This ship ugly!” For that alone, this game rocks. I didn’t get far, but at least with this one, I kinda understood what was going on.