The next step in Marvel Comics agenda was to take the world, or the U.S., by storm with Captain America. So far the film has been proven to be a box office hit and hasn’t done to bad with the critics either. For some odd reason, I am always looking to play games based on properties or movies that I actually care for. A game based on one of Marvel’s superheroes? Pump it in my veins immediately. But Sega hasn’t had much luck with developing good Marvel games before, that is until Captain America: Super Soldier. Lets get it out the way now, this is in no way better than Arkham Asylum but it is a solid fun game.
“[Captain America: Super Soldier] is a solid fun game.
Captain. America: Super Soldier is not a direct movie tie-in. Instead, the story is separate adventure that follows Capt. America to the Bavarian Mountains where The Red Skull’s mad scientist, Armin Zola, is up to no good. His motivations are to steal your blood and create an army of HYDRA super soldiers. You go through the game infiltrating the castle where Zola works out of and of course, beating up his HYDRA soldiers. The castle is somewhat of an open world as it lets you return to previous areas earlier in the game but despite that, it still feels very closed off. It’s not until the very end of the game that you’ll be able to move back to these areas, and even then there’s no real reason to go back other than to search for collectables. Also worth mention that out of the 7 hours it took me to complete the game, the Red Skull was in it for about 5 minutes.
“The combat system is a solid take on the Arkham Asylum formula.
The combat system is where most people will call the game an Arkham Asylum knockoff. In this case that works as somewhat of a compliment. Much like Arkham Asylum, Capt. America focuses on fighting more than one enemy at a time and relying on counter attacks to take them down. The lack of a combo system can make the game feel repetitive at times. The combat consists of pushing one single button for attacks, one for counter attacks, and one for your shield. I would of liked something more robust that encouraged using more than one button moves. But I do understand that asking for that sort of gameplay would result in the game being a clone. The combat system is a solid take on the Arkham Asylum formula.
The platforming controls are without a doubt the weakest part of the gameplay. The platforming feels fully automated and very stiff. Throughout the game you’ll run into various sequences that call for platforming, or pushing A when the game tells you to. Most of it is just you jumping on a ledge, platform, or swinging off a pole to your next obstacle. I’m also not sure why there’s a multiplier for performing these acrobatic moves perfectly but not a multiplier for the combat system. Luckily, the game isn’t filled with many platforming sequences.
Not much to say about Captain America’s visuals. I wouldn’t call this a terrible looking game but it isn’t exactly good looking either. I found the areas to be well designed and appropriate for the World War II era, though the weak textures make things look dull and uninspiring. A good all around polish could have made the game look much smoother. The character model for Capt. America did look better than most of the areas and especially the other characters.
“Despite having the actor from the film to do the voice work, this is where the game feels less like a Captain America game more than anything.
Despite having the actor from the film to do the voice work, this is where the game feels less like a Captain America game more than anything. Chris Evans sounds like he is reading lines off a paper which he is but there’s no sense of direction here. Most of his dialogue is boring exposition with no charismatic features to it. I know Capt. America isn’t a joker but I know he has more personality than a cardboard box. Actress Hayley Atwell reprises her role as Peggy Carter, and I’m not joking when I say her voice is radioed in. At least in the game it is. Her character doesn’t even appear in the game not once. The only way you would know that this is a Capt. America game is that they mention his name and HYDRA.
“Captain America: Super Soldier is the best Marvel superhero game that Sega has produced.
Captain America: Super Soldier is the best Marvel superhero game that Sega has produced thus far. It was an enjoyable game that I genuinely had fun with but I do recognize its various flaws. You could definitely do worse by picking up the Thor or Green Lantern games that just came out. Don’t know if it will happen but I hope we can get a standalone Captain America game that doesn’t have a movie to tie into or doesn’t pressure the developer into having it done by said date. If that ever happened, we could be looking at a serious competitor for the Arkham series.
This review was based on a retail copy of the game for the Xbox 360.