Marvel Pinball quick review
Pinball is awesome. Marvel is awesome. So, obviously, mixing the two should result in awesomeness.
So yeah, this is made by the guys who made Zen Pinball, and I LOVED Zen Pinball. As such, I don’t really feel the need to do a complete review of this, but, instead, I’ll quickly comment on each of the tables available in the package.
So read on and see if they’re fun here!
Developer: Zen Studios
Publisher: Zen Studios
Date of Release: December 14th 2010
Platforms: Playstation 3, Xbox 360 (as DLC for Pinball FX 2) (PS3 version reviewed)
Rated E for Everyone
Actually a fun table. It has that Wolverine vibe to it, with adamantium pumps used to shoot the ball, a big hand with claws that can pop up from the top of the table to shoot the ball, claw marks. It also has ninjas to fight in the middle of the table if you go to the second “launch” area, a “last chance” sort of thing where you have to try to hit a certain ramp if the HEAL things are lit up when you lose your ball, and, of course, having the fight the Sentinel, Silver Samurai and Sabertooth, each with their own “missions” and ways to activate them. Like all the tables in the game, you have 3D versions of various characters on the board, moving around and doing various things. Here, Sentinel serves as a skillshot, Silver Samurai can lock your ball and… I haven’t been able to activate the Sabertooth mission yet (yeah, I suck at pinball). It’s a fun table, and you get a TON of scoring chances here, huge bonuses when you lose you ball, so high scores should be fairly easy for most people and the ramps and targets are generally not too hard to hit.
I really like this table, because there’s actually a lot going on. You can fight Doctor Octopus, Mysterio and the Green Goblin, each has his own gimmicks. Doc Oc if just simply hitting a ramp, but the other 2 are special. Mysterio is also hitting ramps, but, in his case, your flipper controls are reversed (though your ball will constantly be saved and points can be collected REALLY fast here). Green Goblin is also hitting a ramp, but, instead of shooting him with your usual ball, a pumpkin grenade comes on the board and you have to hit him with that, but that’s not easy since he’s always moving around to different ramps. The board looks really nice as well, really having that Spidey feel to it (heck, one of the ramps has the ball coming out of spidey’s wrist, just like his web). Another really fun table. Getting high scores here can sometimes be really easy, since some ramps have given me over a million points in certain conditions.
Iron Man Table
This table isn’t too bad. There’s tons of ramps, each leading to various ways to get points, and, after dropping the 3 targets in front of Tony Stark, you can get in a hole to go to a mission. I’m not 100% sure how the mission is selected, it might have something to do with the targets in front of Whiplash and Mandarin (this board’s vilains), but I really have no idea. I think that, by doing all the missions, Ultimo can pop up in the middle of the board, but I suck at pinball so I didn’t get that yet. There’s some missions that have you shooting cannons not only at targets, but at Whiplash (and maybe Mandarin, I haven’t seen that yet) which is pretty crazy. The vortex mission is particularly awesome, it starts a vortex with 4 balls and shoots them around the board for badass multiball play. I really like this table, nice stuff and some of the animations are really nice.
That’s my least favorite table in the bunch. There’s fewer ramps, not a lot of targets, and some of them are way too hard to aim at. It’s not without its good things though. This one, rather than having some cool animation on the display screen, actually has mini-games on the display screen. You can buy equipment, capture vampires/doppelgangers and choose missions. I’m completely unfamiliar with Blade, but there’s this big demon-like guy that pops up when day turns to night, who you can try to defeat. Overall though, I feel like it’s just… sort of empty. Not a bad table, but definitely not the best Zen Studios have made.
All the tables are quite solid. I find that they’re a bit easier than in Zen Pinball, but they’re also really fun. There’s a few functions here like Hero Score which… I’m not sure what it does, other than giving you a point for every million points you have and multiplying it by the number of tables you’ve played, as well as giving you points for the number of points each of your friends who have played each board. Kinda weird.
A minor annoyance is huge boxes with messages popping up to tell you if you’re close to increasing your hero score or beating your current record, but it doesn’t happen THAT often.
I really like the idea of realistic physics like this in a pinball video game, because it enables you to do things you can’t do in real tables, like having the Green Goblin flying around the board, or Mandarin shooting a flamethrower at Iron Man, and various other things, so it gives them a unique feel. And the prospect of downloadable tables (seems like the next might be Ghost Rider if the voting continues as it is at marvelpinball.com) is awesome.
Bottom line: Zen Pinball was fun, this is basically the same thing but with Marvel characters. Thumbs up!
The Save Factor
The game is 10$ and includes 4 tables. When Zen Studios releases a new table, it’s always 2.50$, which is a great price. Here you get the “base” game and 4 tables for 9.99$, which is the same price as just 4 tables. Good stuff I say. Much better than spending 1000$ on a real pinball table.
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