Zen Studios have released a new Marvel themed set of pinball tables, Marvel’s Women of Power, featuring some of the mightiest Super Heroes and Super Villains in the Marvel Universe.
The first of the two has thrusts you into an alternate Soviet-dominated reality in the A-Force table, featuring an original storyline where the destruction of a Cosmic Cube has formed a Soviet-controlled alternate reality. It’s up to you to keep the Cosmic Cube balls alive in the table’s Wizard Mode by directly controlling Black Widow and Madame Masque.
The second table is the Champions table. Here you must defeat Bombshell with Ms. Marvel in an original storyline where players must help Kamala and her friends as they take on Bombshell following a daring bank robbery. Utilize Squirrel Girl’s ‘squirrel army”’ to search for the criminal’s tracks and Spider-Gwen’s webbing to incapacitate your enemies.
Another Marvel movie release of course means another pinball table to add to Zen Pinball on the Xbox platforms. This time it’s Ant-Man, and thanks to unique mechanics and a seldom seen layout, it’s another superb table to add to your collection.
The Ant-Man table focuses its feature in the top half, leaving the bottom peculiarly empty. It results in fast ball movement and the occasional unhittable drops between the flippers, but it does make it a simpler table to fathom, as well as helping you concentrate when multiple balls enter the field. It certainly feels a little odd at first, but it’s a design choice that’s clearly appropriate to the table, and once you’ve experienced more of what’s on offer, this becomes abundantly clear.
The Zen Pinball table standard of integrated mini-games built into the table reveal themselves as you complete objectives by hitting the ball towards the ramp-heavy top and the particle suspended in the upper right. And as expected they’re theme appropriate, fun and intense to play, whether it’s using bumpers to keep the ball active on the table, or shooting the animated, 3D Ant-Man as he shrinks and dashes around. They’re excellent rewards for your skill, dishing out copious amounts of points for you to tackle the leaderboard as well as achieving feats of pinball wizardry a real table never could – such as the empty bottom half peeling back to reveal a mini-game and separate field to play underneath.
The aforementioned particle grants points and shrinks each time you hit it, until it finally reaches ball size and comes loose, brilliantly acting as a second ball. A few well placed shots later and a third ball can enter the mix, ant sized and a nightmare to see, but a great way to rack up even more points. It all comes together to provide ample opportunities to hit the ramps and create combinations to unlock bonuses.
It’s a fast table but one that’s full of easy to reach areas that reward you with tremendous points. The austere lower half aids with ball control, and thanks to its subtle lights, and colour scheme of red, black and blue, it’s an attractive and intuitive table to play. The odd low-tech traditional pinball sound effect sounds a little incongruous with the theme, but believable voice doubles for the film’s cast sells the authenticity nicely. It’s another great marvel table that should definitely be in your collection.