Super Types

March 8, 2012

The Comics Console: Marvel Avengers Alliance

As if I didn’t spend enough time on Facebook already, now in between commenting on status updates and liking posts, I can can level up my custom team of Avengers. It’s really a beautiful thing.

Marvel Avengers Alliance

Developer: Playdom
Released: March 1, 2012
Platform: Facebook

At first glance what really struck me when I first launched Avengers Alliance was how beautifully the animation flowed. The graphics are crisp and the presentation is exciting. Right from the get go you begin customizing your main character, a rookie S.H.I.E.L.D. agent who’s rushed into leading their own team of Avengers after Hydra, Loki, and other top name baddies begin prowling for an element that will make their own powers stronger.

Wonderfully illustrated still frames and text guide you through the opening of the story and into the tutorial where the real meat and potatoes of the game lies: the combat. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect with the game play. Facebook has offered some cute little addicting games before, and I was hoping for something a bit more with this turn based fighter, and much to my surprise, not only did I get a bit more…I got a LOT more. The game is incredibly deep, on par with some of history’s top turn-based combat games, be it 1990’s Final Fantasy or Pokemon.

If you’ve ever played a turn-based combat game then you know exactly what to expect; if not, it’s exactly what it sounds like: your team takes turns fighting against another team. I was elated to see so much depth of strategy. With five classes of fighters, each one balanced against another, and tons of weapons, resources, and supplies to upgrade and utilize against your foes, it’s easy to get lost perfectly sculpting your perfect team and tactics.

At the start of your journey you’re given Iron Man, Black Widow, and of course your own S.H.I.E.L.D. agent, with other characters appearing throughout for an opportunity to experiment with as possible future party members. Characters and items are purchasable with the in-game currency consisting of Silver, S.H.I.E.L.D. Points, Command Points all earned within the game, and Gold which you can only obtain with real life money. And fret not, this isn’t a scam to keep taking your money, like an arcade game asking for more quarters. If you’re serious about the game, then buying Gold, and plenty of it, is well worth your cash.

I’ve been playing the game for at least a few hours a day every day since it released, and I’m still finding myself tweaking combinations of characters, their skills, and how they can fit properly together as a team. Serious players will enjoy the amount of time and work that will go into simply training and developing each character, but non-gamer Marvel fans who just want to try out the free Avengers game can very simply enjoy the experience and hopefully discover the vastness of this little piece of the Marvel Universe.

In addition to the campaign is Player-Versus-Player (PVP) mode, which allows you to compete with other players, be it your own friend list or the world. Not only is it fun, but there are special perks and boosts to be found for your overall game.

I still can’t get over just how damn pretty Avengers Alliance is. When simply selecting your next mission, the cityscape environment is alive with lights shining through building windows, helicopters hovering back and forth, and rain and clouds mixing overhead.

Even with Mass Effect 3 and Street Fighter X Tekken exchanging spots in my Xbox 360’s disc tray, it’s Avengers Alliance I end up spending more time with between games. As far as free games go, the True Believers will have a hard time finding one better than this. Especially one so well put together.

Who’s in your ultimate team of Avengers?

For more of The Comics Console, click here!

Andrew Hurst
andrewhurst@comicattack.net
@andrewEhurst

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