This action-packed exploration of the Marvel Universe will remain a gem to video gaming for decades to come.

User Rating: 9.5 | Marvel: Ultimate Alliance PS2
"Marvel: Ultimate Alliance" is the first installment of a two-part game series chronicling the adventures of S.H.I.E.L.D's assembled superhero alliance. It features an impressively high quantity of heroes, villains and misc. characters to play as and/or converse with.

+ STORY +

Nick Fury starts recruiting every possible ally into the alliance in order to stop the Masters of Evil from completing their plot to enslave the human race. Throughout the story the Masters of Evil unleash their allies onto S.H.I.E.L.D and it's super-team, spanning beyond Earth to Norse realms and hellish demonic dimensions.

+ GAMEPLAY +

Gameplay can be a bit low-quality in terms of visuals in MUA, but all that the game has to offer for players more than makes up for that. Fighting isn't repetitive. You're always facing new forms of different enemies that vary every level, and at the right time you're put to the test with a unique boss who in no way resembles any of the others already encountered in the game. Gameplay is perfectly adapted in all of the environments, e.g. Asgard, Dr. Strange's Mansion, Mephisto's Realm, so large that it would take you a while to explore everything. It's not all beat 'em up, there's information related to the Marvel Universe all over the place. Wherever you go there are secrets to unlock that keep you fixed into the game for a long time after finishing the main story, and these themselves expand what's going on around you and broaden your knowledge when you play the game and listen to some of the things the characters you meet have to say. What's more interesting about the gameplay is the uniqueness of the players. Every character has their own lines during conversations, and special powers of their own that make them lesser or better than their allies, making them advantageous during gameplay. This takes me onto upgrades. You can upgrade your characters at any of the SHIELD logo spots in the levels, meaning that the weaker heroes can soon become the strongest heroes. As well as unlockables, this also persuades you to go on with the game as it makes you work harder to get enough XP to pay for your new abilities.

+ OVERALL SUMMARY +

"Marvel: Ultimate Alliance" is highly addictive overall, and fully immerses you into the messages that are sent through the main story. It blends the adult fandom with the younger fandom, creating a stunning Marvel Universe epic that will be remembered for a long, long time.

RATING: 9.5 - (PS2, Xbox 360, PS3, PC)