GotGame’s Top 10 Best Marvel Video Games
Closing out our Month of Marvel, we decided to take a look at the best Marvel games of all time. Marvel games have a rich history, going all the way back to the first Atari 2600 Spider-Man game in 1982. With no signs of slowing down nearly 40 years later, Marvel is still a powerhouse in the games industry. While choosing a list of the best game is definitely subjective, we felt like this list embodies everything that makes a Marvel game great. With upcoming games like Marvel’s Avengers and Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales, we’re expecting even more great things from Marvel. Here is GotGame’s Top 10 Best Marvel Video Games.
Back when the Marvel Cinematic Universe started, Sega and Marvel had a partnership to release various video games based on the first few movies. This included Iron Man, Iron Man 2, The Incredible Hulk, and Captain America: The First Avenger. It also included the first Thor film. While the quality of these games are debatable, one particular one stood out. While Liquid Entertainment and Red Fly Studios made the console versions of Thor: God of Thunder, WayForward Technologies made the Nintendo DS version.
Taking place before the events of the film, the DS version of Thor takes players on a dual screen beat ’em up adventure. While the concept of the game was simple, WayForward does an excellent job showcasing Thor’s abilities. Destroying frost giants and trolls, the game displayed the action on both screens and delivered some excellent sprite work. The game might not be all that difficult, but it’s still a worthy entry for fans of old-school beat ’em ups.
Movie-based games aren’t always good, but when they are, they tend to maintain a legacy. Arguably one of the best game adaptations goes to Treyarch’s Spider-Man 2. Improving upon the previous game in every way, this game gave players an open world for Spider-Man to explore for the first time. Fans especially remember the swinging mechanic, which delivered satisfying gameplay for the wall crawler.
While the game followed the story of the film, it added a lot more to the mix. This includes additional villains like Shocker and Mysterio, and even allies like Black Cat. Spider-Man games have definitely gone through many interpretations, but Spider-Man 2 will always be considered one of the best. It wouldn’t be until Insomniac Games gets their hands on the character that we would see a huge improvement.
When director James Gunn released Guardians of the Galaxy in 2014, he managed to turn B-list heroes into stars. The film made a name for these characters and are now among some of the favorites in the MCU. With the new interpretation of the characters, Telltale Games decided to make a loose interpretation of their own. Guardians of the Galaxy: The Telltale Series takes what we love about the film and puts a new story in our control.
The game uses Telltale’s trademark point and click adventure style, but mixes it up with quick time events and shootouts. Of course, we also have the opportunity to make important choices to affect the story. Not only does this franchise work for Telltale’s gameplay, but it also allows them to deliver their fun sense of humor. With a phenomenal voice cast and fantastic licensed music, this is a game no Guardians of the Galaxy fan should miss. You can check out how we felt about it in our reviews of episode one, two, three, four, and five!
Raven Software’s X-Men Legends in 2004 was one of the first games to really give us a solid team-up Marvel game. Of course, it focused primarily on the X-Men, but that’s practically a universe in itself. The very next year, X-Men Legends 2: Rise of Apocalypse came out. Not only did it build on the formula of the original, but it expands upon it in new ways that make it a fantastic choice for our list.
Rise of Apocalypse brings the X-Men and the Brotherhood of Mutants together to take down a common enemy. Players could select from multiple mutants to build their team of four, leveling up their characters and unlocking new abilities. The style of the game was also unique, delivering a fantastic interpretation of these iconic characters. It also happens to be the first video game appearance of Deadpool. Add that this is the first online multiplayer Marvel game (we’re not counting Marvel Nemesis which released on the same day), and you have one for the history books.
When you think of the Incredible Hulk, you think of him smashing things. No game does that better than Radical Entertainment’s Hulk: Ultimate Destruction in 2005. This is the epitome of Hulk games, giving players the chance to just cut loose and destroy everything in their path. Of course, you don’t have to destroy everything, but where’s the fun in that?
While the game is notable for being a solid open world action game, it also brought us one other gem: Fred Tatasciore. Ever since this game, Tatasciore has voiced the Hulk on numerous occasions, and has done fantastic each time. Taking the fight to the Abomination, Hulk proves he’s the strongest time and time again. With satisfying boss fights and a pretty solid story, we won’t forget this classic gem anytime soon.
Deadpool, the classic Merc with a Mouth, how could anyone ever forget you? Your fourth wall breaking antics and your unhinged capabilities for violence easily secure your place on this list. Nolan North’s performance as Deadpool was at its peak in High Moon Studios’ game of the same name. With a pretty diverse combat system and lots of over-the-top action, this was a solid experience.
Of course, the main reason why this one stands out is the sense of humor it has. We get to see Deadpool in his element, long before Ryan Reynolds portrayed the antihero in his 2016 film. Having conversations with his own voice actor, talking to the player, and even blowing the game budget in the second level make for fun standout moments. It might not have done amazing critically, but it was successful enough to warrant a port to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One just before the release of the film.
When Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds was announced, fighting game fans couldn’t contain their excitement. Hearing “Capcom presents” in conjunction with Marvel comics is like music to our ears. When the game launched, it delivered on the spectacle and even provided a pretty solid roster in a great comic-inspired art style. Of course, Capcom wasn’t done there. While originally planned as DLC, Capcom released Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 the very same year as the original.
This version gives an additional 12 characters for the game, alternate costumes, and even new modes. This was the fighting game to introduce many newer Marvel fans to characters like Rocket Raccoon, Nova, and even Deadpool. With it’s X-Factor comeback mechanic and intense aerial combos, this was a fighting game to watch. We still appreciate the fantastic presentation and hope to see a true successor someday (even if we liked Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite).
It really doesn’t get anymore Marvel than Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order. Boasting a large roster of heroes, especially when you purchase the DLC, this Nintendo Switch exclusive lets players build their ultimate team. The Marvel Ultimate Alliance series builds upon the gameplay of X-Men Legends and improves the presentation in the best of ways. We definitely had a blast with it when we reviewed it last year.
Including the Avengers, the X-Men, the Defenders, and even the Guardians of the Galaxy, this is a Marvel fan’s dream. It gets even better when the Fantastic Four join the mix in the Shadow of Doom Epilogue DLC. Players can unlock multiple costumes, voice lines and more for their favorite heroes. They can even take them into various challenges and improve their abilities. The best part? You can do this all with your friends either in local or online co-op.
In the world of fighting games, there’s tons of moments to remember. Some of these moments include important match-ups and incredible comebacks. Sometimes it’s just the simple phrases. One of these phrases is still considered to be iconic to this day: “It’s Mahvel Baybee”! Marvel vs. Capcom 2 made the scene in 2000, and while it wasn’t an instant classic, it’s surpassed cult status and reached the level of legends in tournament play.
While Marvel vs. Capcom 3 delivers a solid fighting experience, there’s a reason why Marvel vs. Capcom 2 still has a strong following. With infinite combos, legendary voice lines, and a large roster of heroes, this 3-on-3 fighter left its mark in history. It wanted to take you for a ride and get your heart pumping. It’s because of this that it’s easily one of the best Marvel games.
This one may come as no surprise, but we were wowed when Insomniac Games unleashed Marvel’s Spider-Man on the world in 2018. With an incredible web swinging system and amazing wall crawling action, this was a marvel of gameplay. Building off of Treyarch’s Spider-Man 2, Insomniac turned things up to eleven, making an impressive open world, fun challenges, and a deep understanding of the iconic Marvel character.
We chose this as our number one pick simply because, while it may focus on one Marvel hero, it ingrains itself into the universe so well. You’ll find the Wakandan embassy, the Avengers tower, and hear all about many of the heroes of the universe. Even with the Spider-Man focus, this is a Marvel game inside and out, and Insomniac delivers on the spirit of what Marvel means to many. Add the incredible presentation, from the voice work to the score, and double down with a spectacular story, and you can see why this would be the best Marvel game.
As we said before, there are many amazing Marvel games and it’s hard to narrow that list down to just a few. While these didn’t make the list, we felt they deserved a moment in the spotlight for showing their fantastic Marvel spirit.
And that’s it! What do you think of our list? Did your favorites make the cut? Any that you felt we were missing? Let us know in the comments below!