LEGO Marvel Avengers (Wii U) Review

By Drew Hurley 01.02.2016 4

Review for LEGO Marvel Avengers on Wii U

Traveller's Tales (or TT Games) has been producing LEGO games that have been consistently improving with each release over the course of the last decade. Now, taking both the material from the Marvel comics world, along with the TV shows and movies, the game is full of promise, but can it live up to what has come before, or will the reliance on using existing material instead of an original story result in a weaker product?

The previous Marvel LEGO game, LEGO Marvel Super Heroes, brought a vast roster of Marvel's most famous heroes into a completely original tale, relying on the comics as the source material for the background and characters. This latest title is more focused on the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) with stages based around each of the films directly tied into the Avengers movies, such as Winter Soldier and Iron Man 3, along with, of course, Avengers and Avengers: Age of Ultron as prominent aspects of the adventure. Using movies as the basis for titles has been hit and miss with previous LEGO titles, but, TT has hedged its bets here, focusing on the MCU for the story-based stages, yet still bringing back the comic focused aspect that made the previous title such a success.

Screenshot for LEGO Marvel Avengers on Wii U

The LEGO releases are quite formulaic, but after over 10 years of producing them, the developers have proven their formula works. This iteration in the series combines many of the greatest strengths of the previous entries: taking the massive roster from the previous game and expanding upon it, taking the huge Manhattan Open World and refreshing it, not to mention adding the hub world system from LEGO Batman 3, on top of the story stages and Manhattan.

Being the latest in a long line of LEGO videogames - and Superhero LEGO games - the team has had plenty of time to finely tune every element of the gameplay, resulting in an end product that feels highly polished. A great example of this is the amount of work that has gone into individualising each of the characters on the massive roster - each has its own unique animations and touches to help bring them to life. When left idle, Trevor Slattery's Mandarin pulls out a football to freestyle some tricks in honour of his beloved Liverpool; Ultron Mark 1's walk falters like a puppet wrapped up in strings; and Lou Ferrigno's transformation into the Hulk is more akin to his TV show version than the new Hulk, simply painting himself green and tearing his clothes, instead of changing in size.

Screenshot for LEGO Marvel Avengers on Wii U

The animations for each of the characters, the design of the open world, and the storytelling through each of the stages - this is a superbly crafted product. Even the weakest parts are done well; for example, games based on movies often use audio ripped from the films in question, which results in poor quality. Here, however, it's done well. Background noise is removed and lines are delivered feeling like they were written specifically for the scene.

As good as this all is, however, nothing is flawless and there are some minor issues present. The QTE-style combat can be a little dull - a regular LEGO boss battle would have been preferable, with the most dynamic parts of the fight being left to FMV. The roster will be a point of contention for some players, too, with some key names missing - such as Spider-Man's catalogue of characters, the Fantastic Four and Deadpool. There has been a lot of controversy around these characters over the last few years, with rumours swirling around Marvel burying them due to their movie rights being out of their control. Speaking with the developer, the statement is that the cast is limited to those closely relating to the Avengers, yet some of the most iconic members of the Avengers, such as Spider-Man and numerous X-Men characters, are absent.

Screenshot for LEGO Marvel Avengers on Wii U

While the story levels are great fun and a real joy for fans of the Marvel movie and TV universe, where LEGO Marvel's Avengers gets really special is with the open world elements. Here, the game really comes alive for the comic fans. The open world area of Manhattan from LEGO Marvel Super Heroes returns, but has undergone a massive overhaul, with all new puzzles, races, collectibles, and plenty of other new additions. On top of Manhattan, there are iconic areas acting as mini open world hubs - places like Asgard, South Africa, and Tony Stark's Malibu home. These open areas massively expand the lifespan, with a humongous amount of collectibles and unlockables to acquire, along with random events that can now occur at any time.

During both the story stages and the open world areas, LEGO Marvel's Avengers is absolutely stuffed to the brim with Easter Eggs. There are winks, nods and inside jokes for fans of every aspect of the Marvel's now massive catalogue. The roster alone will have old school comic fans jumping in glee as they get to see some iconic and obscure characters battling alongside Hemsworth's Thor and Downey's Stark. The massive cast was built up not only from the crew at TT - massive fans themselves - but also from the fans. The game's director, Arthur Parsons, is well known for often engaging with the ever-faithful at events and on Twitter, and has delivered exactly what players asked for…. unless it was from a franchise FOX owns the movie rights to, of course!

Screenshot for LEGO Marvel Avengers on Wii U

Cubed3 Rating

9/10
Rated 9 out of 10

Exceptional - Gold Award

Rated 9 out of 10

When it was announced that the next Marvel game was to be based on the MCU, it seemed unlikely it could live up to LEGO Marvel Super Heroes and yet the team has managed to take each aspect of the previous entry and make improvements. This is easily the best LEGO title released so far, and also easily the best Marvel game produced, full stop. It epitomises an element of games that many seem to have forgotten recently: fun. The upcoming Season Pass also brings with it a significant amount of content for a surprisingly low price - a mere £8 for five packs that add new levels and an extra 40 characters.

Developer

TT

Publisher

Warner Bros

Genre

Adventure

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  9/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

Guest 01.02.2016#1

Can i ask if you encountered any crashs during your play time. I got the original game on the wii u and it crashed all the time in multiplayer. The screen would freeze and the wii u would make a horrible noise. Is this game more stable?

Stooball (guest) 04.02.2016#2

Hey I just wanted to mention that the screenshots here are from Lego Marvel Superheroes

Hi Stooball - thanks a lot for pointing that out. Entirely my fault, and it's been fixed now. That's what I get for relying on Google rather than official assets Smilie

As for the question about the Wii U version, there have been no crashes so far, so it looks like things are fine - fingers crossed, anyway!! Smilie

Adam Riley [ Director :: Cubed3 ]

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Guest (guest) 08.02.2016#4

How is the frame rate this time around? The first lego marvel on wii u ran pretty well most of the time, but when i played lego jurassic i found it to have a constant stutter and a horrible drop any time it characters were in different places of the level.

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