Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 2 – Xbox 360

October 18, 2009 – 9:52 am | by johnsonr


After a long three year wait, it’s finally arrived, Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 2 was released on the 25th September and promised to be a brand new game with an in depth storyline and new characters for us to control; Unfortunately I cannot say that this is entirely true. However, the game does have some fantastic qualities and a storyline that makes it both addictive and enjoyable to a wide audience, not to mention the avid Marvel fans out there. Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 2 combines two recent storylines that some will know well, namely the Civil War and Secret War.
 
The game opens on a mission in Latveria where you control the four characters with a main role – Captain America, Spiderman, Wolverine and of course Iron Man, all of which have been ‘hired’ by SHIELD Colonel Nick Fury to investigate President Lucia Von Bardas who has been supplying Villains with high-tech deadly technology. What Fury does not tell the heroes is that the Government knows nothing about the mission, so when Latveria retaliates at New York people start talking about Hero Registration. This is where the storyline branches in two ways and you get to choose your side, either stick with the likes of Iron Man and go underground as a rogue deciding not to register with the government or you can choose to side with Captain America and register, becoming a government lackey. As you progress through your side of the game you unlock more superheroes, such as ‘Thing’, ’Penance’ and Deadpool’.
 
As in Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 1 you get to control a team of four heroes which you can freely swap out depending on your preference or need and with over 20 heroes you can make a lot of fun combinations. Each Hero starts with two special powers as well as the basic hand-to-hand combat manoeuvres and as you start earning experience points by slaughtering the baddies you level up and earn more powers and abilities. Each hero ends up with a total of four special powers and around five abilities which can lead to a lot of hectic, villain destroying fun whether it’s with SongBirds Sonic Clap or Gambits 52-card pickup. The real fun starts when you earn a Fusion Power Token by, you guessed it, fighting the bad guys. These give you the option to join two heroes together to create one massive attack and annihilate everything in the room (a favourite of mine is the combination of Storm and the Green Goblin, resulting in a controllable bomb fuelled tornado). Every environment is completely destroyable meaning you will find yourself spending about ten minutes perfecting your super attacks on wooden boxes before going anywhere near a villain. This, with the luscious and detailed backgrounds makes the game play fun and constantly changing.
 
There are a few things that I feel drag the game down a bit, for example the dialogue is average at best and when your character tries to talk it seems completely out of sync with the image and the picture seems considerably too dark at the beginning of the game, I found it hard to navigate through levels even with brightness on high. The camera angles can be a bit irritating when you are trying to focus on one thing and the birds-eye aerial view makes it quite difficult. Also I personally thought the game was over too quickly and although you have the chance to restart the game on a harder setting with your upgraded characters ready to play, I felt like there should have been more levels.
 
In closing, I would like to say that this is an enjoyable and addictive game and with the ability of being able to control your favourite superhero and four-way multiplayer for the times you want your friends to help, it is very appealing.  A host of new characters and fun superpowers make Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 2 a good buy but it can sometimes seem too much like the original game. For these reasons I am going to give MUA2  3/5 stars.

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3 stars (out of 5)

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