LEGO Marvel’s Avengers review

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The absolutely stunning Avengers film hit the silver screen in 2012 with immense critical success. What was surprising is that TT Games didn’t follow up the film’s release with their special brand of LEGO humour, instead we saw LEGO Marvel Super Heroes the following year.

One thing I love most about the LEGO games (besides the fact it’s LEGO) is the awesome humour – taking iconic scenes from the films they are based on and having fun with them. This was lost in LEGO Marvel Super Heroes. Without that anchor point I didn’t enjoy the game as much. LEGO Marvel’s Avengers set this to rights by going back to what the series has done best – focusing around the films.

The game follows the story arc of the Avengers films, kicking things off with the opening scene of Age of Ultron before flashing back to the first film. Scenes from Captain America’s films are beautifully woven in making the game feel like a new story while still centering on the Avengers cinematic story – it’s a shame that TT Games couldn’t weave in more moments like this, instead opting to bring in scenes from Iron Man 3, Thor the Dark World and Captain America The Winter Soldier as extra missions accessible via the world map. Just like the many Marvel films, Stan Lee gets some great cameos throughout the game, and there are LEGO versions of the end credit extra scenes.

MalibuLMA

Before you embark on a story mission, there’s a smaller hub area to play in – some of which are available to explore further when in between missions. These serve as small introductions to each story, either tasking you with building a useful item or getting the team ready for the challenge that waits. Further exploration in these hub worlds when in between missions includes the usual gold brick and extra character collection, plus the option to play several side missions, some of which are as entertaining as the main game’s levels.

Levels are perfectly pitched. They’re not too long and stay creative enough to keep my interest – it’s a shame I couldn’t have said the same for LEGO Marvel Super Heroes. The hub worlds are excellent and it was fun exploring Tony Stark’s Malibu Island or flying around Asgard. LEGO Manhattan returns and while it feels a little too familiar, new challenges and side missions await – and damn there’s a lot to do.

Combat is fluid if a little tiresome with the incessant bashing of the attack button – a team-up move does help to alleviate this slightly, which can be pulled off once a meter is filled. Classic team combination moves from the films are recreated, as well as new combination moves from the main Avengers team – perfect for instakills when you get surrounded.

DinoLMA

The roster has seen an overhaul too. Removing Spiderman, X-Men, The Fantastic Four, and The Guardians of the Galaxy, and their many allies and villains – a shame – but in their place is a whole new roster of the lesser-known Marvel characters plucked straight from the comics. Great for fans of paper, but not so much for those only familiar with the star-studded line up of the cinematic world of Marvel.

LEGO Marvel’s Avengers isn’t all Hollywood glitz. Boss battles are disappointing button prompt mashes and the sound mix is rather iffy. Character lines have been sampled directly from the movies and sounds muffled, when these are delivered against the new sound effects and one liners, it sounds pretty terrible.

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LEGO Marvel’s Avengers does exactly what you might expect from a LEGO game. There’s a ton of characters to unlock, lots of things to collect and a whole world of cinematic Marvel to laugh at – but it doesn’t offer anything particularly new, retreading old LEGO ground in Marvel’s boots. However, the film to LEGO humour is spot on with interesting levels that are pitched at the right length. I’ll certainly be mopping up all side quests, collectibles and rescuing Stan Lee to 100% this one!

Thanks to Xbox and Stature PR for their support

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I've been gaming for longer than I care to remember and spent four years writing for another XCN website leading a 10 strong team. Now I'm in charge of TiX alongside Dave Moran – I hope you enjoy what we do!