Back in 2013, TT Games partnered with LEGO to release their first major foray into the Marvel license with LEGO Marvel Super Heroes. Over four years later, they’ve released the sequel, hoping to hit the same chords that made the original such a hit (spoiler alert, they do). LEGO Marvel Super Heroes 2 picks up right after the events of the first game. Kang the Conqueror is snatching up Marvel’s famous cities and locations and merging them all into one super hub-world called Chronopolis. This causes a bunch of heroes to be ripped from their homes and thrown into Chronopolis where they must work together to put an end to Kang’s dastardly deeds.
It comes as no surprise that this game is full of that TT Games branded humor. The humor is so formulaic now that it’s just something I expect and boy they have not let me down. There are some jokes there for everyone sure, but the ones for the comic fans are the ones that make me chuckle. There’s a bunch of great physical comedy thrown in for good measure as well, such as Star-Lord throwing on his headphones and rocking out to a simplified ‘Mr. Blue Sky’ and shooting down all the bad guys with his signature rad blasters. I won’t spoil too much because finding these small details is part of the greater fun of it all.
Being a comic reader myself I love it when games throw out nods and winks about certain things or characters, especially if they’re super obscure! Like who has heard of Hit Monkey? I’m sure about three of you put your hands up. That’s ok though because he’s super obscure, but he’s definitely in this game. There’s obviously a lot of love and care put into this game by people who are passionate about what they’re creating, or we wouldn’t have Hit Monkey in a LEGO game!
A GREAT cast of characters, over 200 of them spanning all reaches of the Marvel Universe from fan-favorite movie characters like Ant-Man, Wong, and Yondu to obscure characters such as N’Kantu The Living Mummy, Karnak, and Hellcow! Unfortunately, the X-Men and Fantastic Four weren’t able to make appearances this time around, I think we all know why, but that just allows room for new characters. Like in place of Wolverine, we get Cap Wolf! Yup, that’s what it sounds like, and it’s great. I feel like one of the LEGO games’ biggest asset is being able to expose people to these lesser known characters that they might not have known about otherwise.
The side missions are both one of the best things and one of the more annoying things about the game. Throughout the open-world hub, you’ll encounter a plethora of side missions that can be completed to unlock those cool and obscure characters you may have heard you grandfather rambling about from his comic heyday. The problem with these is that there are so many, it must have been a lot of work making unique missions and therefore they will get repetitive. But as long as you take breaks and do other things it shouldn’t be too bad. There’s also the Gwenpool missions that feature an intro from Gwenpool herself (in lieu of Deadpool) and these have yet to get repetitive. They’re zany and wacky, and fun, and one of them even features one of my favorite femme fatales, Squirrel Girl!
These happen so often, unfortunately, that it seems almost redundant to keep mentioning them. But for the sake of this review, I will let the good people (that’s you) know just what kind of hiccups they may encounter along their LEGO Marvel journey. This game seems to be missing that layer of polish that most other LEGO games have these days. Too often have I had to restart from the checkpoint due to bugs halting my process whether it be getting stuck in a falling loop, getting stuck in a wall or corner, or even the character selector failing to go away. It’d be nice not to have these in my game, but that’ll never happen so we might as well learn to live with it.
LEGO Marvel Superheroes 2 is a great entry into TT Games’ legacy of brick-building video games. It’s not my favorite mind you (I’m a Star Wars guy), but it’s great and is definitely a step forward. It has the advantage of being more of a household name than say LEGO Ninjago, a game that came earlier this year and therefore will easily snatch up all the attention (not that it doesn’t deserve it). It does suffer from some pretty big bugs and lack of polish this time around which could have made things a lot worse but I’m glad it didn’t. The game acts as a great entry point for people wanting to get into the expansive world of comics as it gives them small tastes of over 200 characters. I know, personally, I’m going to grab some Inhumans stories after playing the game (and not because of the TV show). TT Games has been making LEGO games long enough now for most people to know they’re pretty damn good at what they do, you know you’re going to pick this one up if you’re a fan.
Note: I did have some big issues with more than a couple of the voice performances but I decided to not bring it up as it is not, in fact, the game developers fault. The development of the game occurred during the recent major Voice Actor strike meaning most of the cast from the first game weren’t able to return for the game, therefore, they had to look to ‘lesser trained’ voices. That being said, Peter Serafinowicz has done a great job as Kang, and Greg Miller of youtube fame lends his chops to Howard the Duck and does a brilliant job.