The Nintendo DS version of Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2 did not work out well on the handheld gaming system and for fans may be a disappointment to the series.
Graphics & Audio: 15/25,
What works on the larger consoles does not always work well on the smaller handhelds and group action games where teams fight just do not fit on a smaller screen. Action may be close to the original and what was intended by the creators, n-Space, but Ultimate Alliance 2 on the handheld is merely average or so.
Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2 continues the same action role playing game where you play one of four Marvel characters fighting through a foreign country on a mission for SHIELD. While you may not be fully informed of your mission you do have the idea that fighting anything that shoots at you is alright so story is not all that important.
The Nintendo DS version is a bit short on story with very short cut scenes to let you know what the bad guys look like and then it’s into the thick of it. You can switch between one of four characters using the touch screen and also control your Fusion attacks but mostly you’re wandering around fighting.
The main role playing part is being able to level up characters using experience and Fusion power as well as finding power up abilities. This is one of the main features of the game and being able to level up characters means fighting tougher opponents gets better but just finding things is tough on the little handheld screen.
You will be able to switch between characters throughout the game for the most part but just like the other versions you will probably find a few characters you like and stick with them. The game does a good job of getting the idea across of what is going on with the mission but it is a light version with very short cut scenes and almost nonexistent voice acting.
The visuals are pretty good but again not that great, merely average to add to the average effects and levels so there really is not much to brag about in graphics and visuals. The sound is actually better than the graphics with some good music playing while you fight which really adds to the decent effects of the fighting.
The cut scenes are short but very well done in a great cartoon comic book style even with the words like Kapoow and Splat showing on the screen. Between the better cut scenes and the disappointing in game graphics which seem muddled to me the game comes out pretty decent but not much more.
While sound and music is pretty good for the Nintendo DS the gameplay leaves a lot to be desired given the screen size and the fact that this may have been developed for the larger consoles. If the game had been reworked especially for the handheld and not almost ported to the smaller version it could have been different but as it stands on the handheld it leaves a lot to be desired.
Some advantages of the handheld and touch screen are switching between characters is quite easy using the handheld and fusion attacks which use two characters is also very easy. The maps and being able to perform fusion attacks easily on the touch screen works well so the handheld does have some good features.
Some of the more annoying aspects which are built into the core of the game are the terrible AI and getting caught up in scenery a bit too often. Having henchmen to fight alongside you is great but they actually have to fight in order to be valuable, more often than not the fellow characters are lagging behind getting caught up on scenery.
Several times I would also be stuck or trapped in an odd space or behind some objects and had to either jump out of the situation or switch to another character. While this could be forgiven if it happened a few times it happens a bit too often and gets to be annoying.
Marvel Ultimate Alliance on the Nintendo DS would be much better playing with friends as you could do more damage and have fewer problems with others controlling the characters. As it stands playing the game solo and trying to run through the campaign means a lot of repetitive fighting and occasional but too often having to get your character unstuck from the environment.
Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2 on the Nintendo DS is more of a pass game as it just did not work out on the handheld system and is much better on the larger consoles.