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Preview

Lego Marvel Super Heroes Preview

Hulk SMASH!

From the very first Lego Star Wars game eight years ago, the series immediately nailed its playfully irreverent, slapstick humour. It’s an aspect which has very much been at the core of all the games since then, and something which is evolving that little bit further with Lego Marvel Super Heroes.

This comes mainly through the use of voices, something which has been practically unused until this point. On occasion it has been added during cutscenes, but for this game it has really been spread liberally into the gameplay as well. You’ll now have a little bit of banter between heroes mixed in with villains taunting you, and it just gives that extra little element to the humour.

The plot of the game sees the Silver Surfer returning to Earth, but when he is mysteriously shot down his board shatters into hundreds of pieces, and a big tussle between the heroes and villains sparks up as everyone tries to secure the cosmic bricks for themselves.

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Spider senses tingle near climbable areas.

The first level sees Sandman and Abomination taking over New York’s Grand Central Station, with Iron Man and Hulk arriving on the scene. Iron Man manages to get half way through explaining their plan of attack when Hulk gets bored and charges off up the road. A road which you may well recognise from the climactic battle sequence of The Avengers movie. In keeping with the quip-filled script of that film, you have Iron Man wondering “Didn’t we clean this road up last month?” as you take control of Hulk, and bash cars into hundreds of little Lego bricks. He makes quite the mess.

But it wouldn’t be the Hulk if he was regular sized, so a new twist here is the ‘BIG-fig’ models, and with Hulk and Abomination both in this first level you can get a taste of how these new characters will play out. Very much a tailored character, Hulk towers over Iron Man, can pick up large objects and toss them around, even pull blocks out of the ground to throw. He’s generally as smash happy as you’d imagine, but even the Hulk will need a helping hand every once in a while.

Sometimes you’ll need to transform back to being Bruce Banner, to do something a little more intellectual than kicking things, but in this level switching to Iron Man will give you a totally different style of gameplay. He’s a much more nimble looking character, shooting little beams from his hands and charging up for a chest arc reactor shot as his main attacks, or skipping up into the air to hover above the foes to rain down missiles. He can also use those missiles to blow up specific elements on the map, such as a hole into the side of a truck which is blocking the way, letting you then create some handles for Hulk to grab on to.

With a cast of 100 characters, good and bad, and with all of them playable with powers and abilities faithful to their comics, there’s a lot of potential in the level design to mix things up with different styles of play, and co-operative puzzle solving. There is, of course, the return of two player split-screen co-op, so this is perfect.

With such a vast catalogue of characters too, it’s given Traveller’s Tales such a wealth of potential to play around with the various match ups. The Hulk vs. Abomination match up early in the level I saw was a perfect blend of QTEs and humour, in an homage to the classic comic book stories involving these two. But for every rematch, there’s a new pairing which will be less familiar or iconic, such as having Wolverine and Captain America teaming up for the second level.

When Spider-Man gets pulled into the mix later in the level, you’ll be able to use his web slinging to get to areas and interact with items only he can web and pull with a mighty tug on an impromptu rope. Likewise, there are little patches where his spider sense will tingle, not because he’s about to be attacked, but because there’s a wall that he can climb or something to interact with.

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Hulk’s going to need a little backup.

It’s another sign of the freedom which the team have had in creating this game, picking and choosing who and what they want to include, and what will be fun for people to play. So that means they’ve been able to pick a pre-Avengers Spider-Man from his youth, and one which most people will instantly recognise, whilst the hub world of Manhattan is stuffed with classic Marvel universe settings. You can run and explore plenty of key locations from the Marvel universe, such as the X-Mansion and Asgard, and you’ll be let loose in a large playground.

There have been improvements to the underlying engine, allowing them to get a lot more out of it and really fulfill their level design. It’s quite nicely demonstrated by the simplest of things, where Hulk pounds on the ground, making the hundreds of little bricks which have been strewn around by his whirlwind of destruction jump up into the air. At the end of the level too, when Hulk, Iron Man and Spider-Man are all facing off against Sandman together. Except at this point he’s made up of hundreds if not thousands of these little Lego pieces swirling around in the form of a gigantic Lego man. It’s really quite a cool sight to see amidst a perfected art style, with dunes of sand absolutely everywhere as you battle through Grand Central Station, or the giant ‘A’ from Stark Tower blocking your path, neatly juxtaposed with the lego objects.

The scale is grander and more detailed, but for all that, it comes back to the tiniest of moments: back to the sense of humour. With Sandman defeated Hulk is told to help Damage Control clean up the mess which he made. Seeing him butt into Iron Man and Nick Fury’s discussion, brandishing a tiny dustpan and brush for the sand had me chuckling alongside the Damage Control guys in the game.

Lego Marvel Super Heroes is set for release on PS3, Xbox 360, Wii U, DS, 3DS, PS Vita and PC some time in Autumn 2013. 

25 Comments
  1. Peter Chapman
    Team TSA: Editor
    Since: Forever

    The Lego games have never really ‘clicked’ with me but this sounds brilliant. It doesn’t hurt that they all look so cute.

    Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 15:08.
    • Joshua Hood
      Small briefcase w*nker
      Since: Forever

      Have you tried them co-op? Don’t think they really work solo, maybe that’s just me.

      Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 15:15.
    • kjkg
      Member
      Since: Apr 2010

      Lego pieces don’t click. It’s more of a sliding action they do….
      I’ll get my coat.

      Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 15:17.
    • bunimomike
      Member
      Since: Jul 2009

      Same here. I really feel like they’re starting to enter the particular world of gaming that interests me. Looking forward to seeing how this pans out.

      Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 15:26.
    • teflon
      Community Team
      Since: May 2009

      They are some of the most adorable things. You really have to see Lego Iron Man in motion to appreciate some of the fantastic animation work that has gone into it all, too. They’ve perfectly captured the way that there’s the slight wobble and constantly adjusting stabilisation at work when he’s hovering, exactly like there is in the recent films.

      It’s so damn good.

      Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 15:28.
      • blackredyellow
        Member
        Since: Mar 2009

        It’s funny how LEGO can look so good. But it does.

        Last week I played through PotC – Jack Sparrows animations where bang on the money.

        Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 15:45.
      • Youles
        Member
        Since: Feb 2011

        I really liked Robin’s acrobatics in Lego Batman 2.

        I’ve never purchased a Lego game yet but have been tempted with each new game…this could be my first!

        Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 15:59.
    • Airiaen
      Member
      Since: Aug 2009

      its looks wonderful but I’d be more interested if it had a its own level editor or something.

      Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 17:00.
      • Joshua Hood
        Small briefcase w*nker
        Since: Forever

        Both of the Lego Harry Potter games had level editors at least, can’t speak for the more recent ones though.

        Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 21:31.
  2. Eldave0
    andUandU
    Since: Aug 2008

    Great games but I wish they would spread them out a bit. The games are fun to complete 100% but one game every six months is proving tricky to keep up with.

    Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 15:10.
    • Forrest_01
      Member
      Since: Jun 2009

      Aww, come on – I have played & completed every Lego game thus far & they are always hugely enjoyable & easy enough to get through. Certainly within 6 months anyway!

      That said, i tend to have them as a ‘late night’ game as they don’t take a lot of concentration & that way i can play something a little more engaging whilst i am still awake whilst still chipping away at the 100% later in the evening.

      I can’t get enough Lego & this sounds right up my street. Might even be a day one!

      Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 16:26.
  3. Joshua Hood
    Small briefcase w*nker
    Since: Forever

    Aw, no PS4 release? This is pretty much my most anticipated game of 2013, can’t wait for it to come out. The co-op in the Lego games is really enjoyable.

    Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 15:14.
  4. blackredyellow
    Member
    Since: Mar 2009

    Only recently got into the LEGO games and they’re really good fun.

    Echoing what’s above too, co-op (as always) makes the games infinitely more enjoyable.

    Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 15:26.
  5. jimmy-google
    Member
    Since: Feb 2009

    Really looking forward to this, think I’ve platinumed every Lego game.

    Disney love licensing out their IPs for Lego games. Really wish they’d do a Toy Story or Pixar Lego game. They’re released plenty of Disney Lego/Duplo toys.

    Back to the Future Lego trilogy would be good too – especially as they’re releasing a BTTF Lego kit of the Delorean, Marty and the Doc.

    Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 15:46.
    • Joshua Hood
      Small briefcase w*nker
      Since: Forever

      Doubt you’ll see many more Lego Disney games. The POTC etc games were before TT were purchased by Warner. Apparently the only reason they’re doing Marvel is because it was the number one thing the team have wanted to make for years.

      Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 15:58.
      • jimmy-google
        Member
        Since: Feb 2009

        With the way Disney are planning on running Lucas Arts and internally focusing on mobile and social games you’d think they want some Disney IP console games released beyond just Infinity.

        Bob Iger said late last year they will use a licensing model “opportunistically” on console games. I can;t image they’ll abandon Disney console games.

        Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 16:28.
      • teflon
        Community Team
        Since: May 2009

        TT were bought by Warner in 2007, actually. Since then they’ve been more than happy to produce games based of properties from other companies. The only real limitations are based around whether there’s a Lego set which they can run alongside.

        The legal wrangling doesn’t really seem to get in the way at all. In fact, it looks to me that WB take a back seat on occasion, and let other companies handle the publishing. Lego City was published by Nintendo, PoTC by Disney etc. etc.

        Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 17:06.
      • Joshua Hood
        Small briefcase w*nker
        Since: Forever

        Fair enough – the way the devs talked on the announcement dev diary sounded like it was a real effort to get to do this game. My bad!

        Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 21:33.
  6. Kennykazey
    Member
    Since: Mar 2010

    Lego LoTR was truly awesome, I think I’ll get this one as well.

    Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 16:14.
  7. Forrest_01
    Member
    Since: Jun 2009

    All Lego games are great. I doubt this will be any different & i personally can’t wait.

    Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 16:26.
    • R1MJAW
      Member
      Since: May 2010

      Totally agree. I’m a huge fan of the Lego games. Hopefully more of the characters are actually worth using (unlike Lego Batman 2 where 95% of the cast were pointless as you could do pretty much everything with a handful of characters).

      Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 17:21.
      • Forrest_01
        Member
        Since: Jun 2009

        Yeah, that’s true – Also to a certain extent with LotR one you had a large number of the mithril items.

        Fortunately, i think each of the marvel characters are different enough to be able to bring something different to the gameplay. At least i hope. :)

        Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 17:32.
  8. CR8ZYH0RSE
    Member
    Since: Sep 2012

    I’m just about purchase lpotc off the store.Coincidence or something more sinister?
    Anyway i’ll look forward to this.

    Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 17:16.
  9. Foxhound_Solid
    Is a smart cookie.
    Since: Dec 2009

    Sounds great.

    Comment posted on 04/04/2013 at 21:37.
  10. RudeAwakening
    Member
    Since: Jan 2011

    Everything looks so much more awesome when turned into lego! This game looks really great.

    Comment posted on 05/04/2013 at 19:43.

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