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Gaming Evolution
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Gaming Evolution
Gaming Evolution
Published by: Electronic Arts
Developed by: Nihilistic / EA Canada
Genre: Fighting
Players: 1-4
Rated: T (Teen)
Release Date: September 20, 2005
Written by: Alex Sohani

When looked upon, Marvel Nemesis was the perfect formula for an excellent game. Incorporating many familiar faces from the popular comic books, interactive environments, and a great beat-‘em up and fighting style, Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects looked flawless on the outside. When it is picked up though, many obvious flaws are seen from the start, and players will have to bore themselves through the dull, repetitive portions of the game to get the few great things in this title.

The storyline throughout the game begins by introducing Dr. Nigel Van Roker, a strange looking bald scientist, who has mysteriously called an alien invasion on New York City. On top of that, this evil genius is on the verge of creating the ultimate warrior and army, and through his failures he has created the Imperfects, a tough group that even gives the Marvel heroes a hard time. Will Roker meet sweet success, or will his project go up in flames? Its up to the heroes of New York to decide!

In Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects, the storyline is very hard to grasp due to the fact that players will use 10 different heroes, along with a few villain levels, and they cross paths very frequently. Also, the few poorly made cutscenes won’t really explain much of what is going on through the level. The best part of the storyline are the occasional levels where a player will use an Imperfect, and a well made video explaining all about the characters origins will come up.

Throughout the game, the gameplay is very lacking when it comes to the difficult single player mode. While the game has a simple to grasp control system, and very clear objectives, the objectives are ridiculous at times, and obviously repeated several times throughout the game. For instance, with Wolverine a player may be asked to clear all enemies out of an area within a time limit, and with Storm, the same thing may be asked, but the player must throw the enemies into a pit.

The way levels work through the storyline is very interesting. There are 4 different paths that can be chosen from at a time, and each character will have a few levels to play through before you have completed their portion of the story. As well as that, in between levels, there are some required times when an Imperfect mission is played which in most cases is a boss battle. After completing each level, certain things become unlocked, such as various characters for multiplayer, cards, comic books, and more.

The controls are very simple to learn throughout the game using the face buttons a majority of the time and the two triggers for special attacks and powers. As well as triggering special attacks, it also drains a meter that shows the hero’s power. Once it is depleted, players must wait for it to recharge. While the button configuration is simple, a majority of the game is button mashing and using the very interactive environments.

The health meter in the game is unique because it doesn’t function like other games. Players will of course have to attack each other to deplete small chunks off each other’s meters. While this happens, 2 bars will show up. The darker bar shows the characters stamina, and the translucent bar underneath it shows the players potential health. Once the potential health meter goes down, the likelihood that a player will recover becomes slim.

While bashing some alien skulls together, several things can happen throughout the game. One of them is a character becoming angry and going into Rage mode. Once in a rage, the hero will have an unlimited amount of super abilities until the time is up. As well as this, when an opponents stamina meter becomes very low, there is a small time window where a player can activate an instant kill. This triggers a cutscene showing a cool technique done by either player.

Characters are not limited to just attacking their enemies head on. Depending on their strength, the interactive environments can be used to their advantage. Iron Man for instance can throw anything from explosive barrels to tanks at his opponents. This allows for more strategy in the game, due to the fact that there are explosions going off everywhere, walls falling apart, and a lot more going on.

Battling multiple enemies at once isn’t what this game is made for, so it doesn’t work too well in single player mode. There is no lock on system throughout the game, making it hard to line up shots with any one enemy. As well as that, the camera will zoom in to show attacks at the worst times, making it easy for other enemies to come in and attack.

The game is one of the most difficult games out there, just because of the fact that there are so many glitchy moments throughout the game. Sometimes the enemy will receive infinite Rage, and sometimes your character won’t be able to pick up the simplest of items and will just stand in one spot. On top of the already difficult gameplay, this becomes quite frustrating.

Multiplayer is where Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects excels. While players are very limited in terms of courses to play in, there are many different characters to choose from, and every battle is different. Players cans et up their battles against a computer or a buddy, but no matter what is going on, using interactive environments and beating other super powered people is always fun!

Overall, the gameplay in the game is great when it comes to playing multiplayer, but when it comes to single player Marvel Nemesis isn’t so hot. The game has simple controls, some great multiplayer and some cool environments to mess around with, but with many glitches, and a repetitive, difficult storyline, the gameplay throughout the game isn’t at its fullest potential.

The graphics throughout Marvel Nemesis are average; players are distinct as well as the environments. While they are average, it isn’t amazing quality, which is a disappointment. The majority of the game looks pretty bad with some puny explosions, funky looking cars, and some strange shading used on the characters. The cutscenes improve the graphical output by a long shot, but they still can be choppy depending on what is going on.

As well as the normal cutscenes being an improvement, the introduction cutscene and the cutscenes introducing the Imperfects are extremely well done showing the Gamecube’s great graphical potential. Everything looks very realistic, and at times even short clips are played showing real people acting. This makes the game more interesting showing how real these Imperfects seem.

The characters movement looks great throughout the game. Every character moves just like hardcore comic book fans would imagine, and every characters attack match them well, even with the speedy characters like Spiderman or Elektra. It is also interesting to see how characters execute their attacks with crazy animations that show EA put a lot of attention into the character design.

The animations throughout the game con become laggy if there is a large chain reaction in some of the environments. (Pretty rare occasions) If a pillar falls in an area causing a barrel to blow up, sending a character flying into more barrels, the game is going to lag in most cases, and cause even more errors. This becomes quite frustrating, and makes the game difficult to follow in certain situations.

As well as the game being laggy, the game also is very dark at times, and it makes characters hard to find at times. The heroes tend to blend in with the shaded areas of the game very well making it easy to lose track of them. With the already choppy gameplay, this makes the game pretty frustrating in the fact that the tough and hard to find enemies make this game extremely “cheap”.

The backgrounds in the game are really badly made with no sign of effort put into them. They look very dull, and really looks like something that belongs on the DS. The game seems like it is trying to go for a realistic type look while staying in the comic book world, but it makes the environments look really boring, and low quality.

Overall the graphics are average at the best. While the game can lag on occasions, and may be unclear, the cutscenes use the GCN to its fullest. Each character looks cool in their own way, but they still could use some improvement. With great animations for the characters, but mediocre environments, the game could use some improvement for a 2005 title.

The sound throughout the game isn’t really something that is memorable in gaming. It shows some good music, great voice acting, and much more. It also has its bad qualities such as the so-so sound effects made at times, and the boring catch phrases each super hero says over and over again.

The music in the game fits the super hero theme very well playing some heroic tunes when some baddy butt is being kicked around, and some good fast paced music during big battles against two super humans. It is usually forgotten though, and players will be so sucked into the difficult gameplay that it is hard to notice.

The sound effects in the game are pretty strange because they can be good at times, and very poor at other times. Things like cars exploding and enemies being pummeled sound good, but if a player starts throwing a car or beating up a wall, the game sounds pretty mediocre, and still sound like someone kicking a person around.

The voice acting throughout the game is incredibly done. It is all done by professional voice actors, and every voice fits each personality very well. Although there are a few catch phrases that are repeating too often, each character sounds like they should having a tough personality if needed, or even a robotic tone for characters like Iron Man.

Overall, the sound is done pretty well for a game, with some of the best voice acting around, a well fitting soundtrack with many heroic tunes, and decent sound effects. With some annoying catch phrases, and strange sound effects, the games can seem out of place.

Replay Value is something this game is lacking as well, only having a multiplayer mode for players to have some fun with. While there are cards and comic books to unlock throughout the game, there really isn’t much to do. These features are very simple to achieve, and it takes about 8 hours to get everything in the game.

Multiplayer is something to do after the game is beaten, but with only 7 environments to play with, and 20 characters with similar move sets, it becomes dull pretty fast, unless there are two experts picking up the game. An area to type in codes is pretty enjoyable unlocking a few more features, but there are very few codes for the game, and none affect the gameplay.

The game really doesn’t have much appeal to gamers, especially after beating the game and playing multiplayer a few times. Marvel Nemesis becomes easy to figure out with a repetitive fighting system seen through each character. With very few environments, and simple to unlock extras, there isn’t much to do throughout the game.

All in all, Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects definitely had some potential. With some unique ideas put on the table, and many familiar faces, this game could be a jewel for hero fans. This title definitely needs some improvement, and a one or two months of delay could have fixed a majority of these issues.

With so many other great hero games out there, this game is definitely one that shouldn’t be focused on as much, unless players are looking for a good rent.


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