Review by darthjulian
"Even among the many bad licensed games, this one stinks"
In a certain way, video games based on well-known comic books share some crucial aspect with movie adaptations: there are lots of them due to their sheer popularity, and most of the times, they end up being bland and unimaginative titles, or simply half baked clones of other, more successful gameplay concepts. The same goes for "Captain America and the Avengers" for the Super Nintendo, a cheap Final Fight rip-off that tries to exploit the popularity of one America´s cheesiest superheroes, and this game ends up being one of the worst of them all.
I can already say that in terms of gameplay, you should not expect anything original from "Captain America and the Avengers". It´s one of the most basic street brawlers you could possibly find out there, and it utterly fails being even remotely as enjoyable as the games it´s trying to copy, like "Final Fight", for that matter. Before you start playing, you can choose from one of the four playable main characters, those being Vision, Hawkeye, Iron Man and Captain America himself. Each of them has his own advantages and abilities, but it actually won´t affect the course of the game that much, honestly. And after that, the game already begins, and from then on, you´ll have to fight your way through several locations against some standard bad guys, and that´s essentially all you can do. There is absolutely no variety whatsoever to this main concept of battling the the same foes over and over again, not even in terms of different moves and combos, and there are only FEW changes from the main formula, like riding on a vehicle in level 2. Okay, now variety isn´t exactly one of the most important aspects about side scroll beat´em ups, granted, but there´s an almost shocking lack of substance and ingenuity in "Captain America" that is almost embarrassing for a 16-Bit game. Even worse are the controls. They´re probably the most sluggish and inexact ones you can find in any video game, and even walking around with one of your heroes becomes a complete chore, just like fighting your enemies. Which brings me to the collision detection in this game, since this seems to be a feature the developers at Mindscape obviously never heard of before. Just try punching your enemies, and on several occasions, you will notice how difficult this can be. The game is made even tougher by some really unfair passages and enemy moves. For example, if you punch an enemy, it can happen that he´ll IMMEDIATELY punch back, only micro seconds later. That´s not a sign of a good A.I., but much rather of poor game design, so it does not exactly matter anymore that for example Captain America´s secondary weapon, his famous shield, is also quite slow and difficult to control. This title isn´t very long, either, and experts should be able to breeze through this one pretty quickly, but I have my doubts about anyone being willing to actually play through this extremely weak rip-off. Before I forget, there´s also a storyline, even though it´s an extremely simple plot, driven forward by almost laughably cheesy dialogues
The graphics are at least not as horrible as the main gameplay, but not really a showcase of the SNES abilities, either. The main characters themselves are at least modeled in a way that they resemble their comic book counterparts, having enough details and colors to satisfy fans of the original story at least partially. However, the animations are very wooden and stiff, and the enemy designs are very unimaginative and lack any sense of creativity. The only villains that actually have some personality or "charm" are the ones taken out of the comic books, so it´s not really an achievement of the developers. Mediocre might be the best term to describe the graphics.
The music, on the other, is utterly horrendous. The music, for example, is a complete mess that consists of nearly endless loops of uninspired and dreadful themes, and there´s definitely nothing "heroic" about the score, instead it was more of a cringe-worthy experience for me. And believe it or not, there are even a few voice samples in this game, and most of the times you can hear the voice of a "narrator" (I´ll use that term loosely...) spouting completely cheesy sentences like "America still needs your help!", or of course the title of the game. One could say it even fits the atmosphere of the story, but it was rather annoying for me instead. Oh, and by the way, if you want to hear the most awful and braindead villainous laughter ever, then just wait for the boss of level 1...oh boy, what were they thinking? It makes the villains seem ridiculous instead of threatening, and it´s just another piece in the puzzle that makes the audio in "Captain America" a botched up affair.
As you can see, there´s hardly anything positive to say about "Captain America and the Avengers", and in my humble opinion, this one definitely deserves a spot among the worst Super Nintendo games ever. Especially fans of the comic books should stay away from this disastrous title, since it marks an insult to beloved heroes such as Captain America or Iron Man.
Reviewer's Score: 2/10 | Originally Posted: 12/11/06
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