LEGO Marvel’s Avengers – Review

Title   LEGO Marvel's Avengers
Developer  Traveller's Tales
Publisher  Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
Platform  Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4 (reviewed), Xbox One, PS Vita, Wii U, Xbox 360, Nintendo 3DS, PS3
Genre  Action Adventure
Release Date  January 29th, 2016
Official Site

legoavengersrev1While some people steer away from LEGO games like they’re plague-bearing clowns, others can’t help but embrace them, with the fun, family-friendly gameplay often delivering a more easy-going gaming experience amidst the shooty bang-bang stuff or the weird, surreal, or shit-scary titles out there. This time, LEGO Marvel’s Avengers steps up to the plate, but as much as the swing is good, there’s a fair amount of miss in there too.

Covering a wide section of the Marvel film universe, the game first drops players into the opening scene of Avengers: Age of Ultron, before taking a more unusual approach to the story. Rather than do what LEGO Jurassic World and others have, and simply present the films’ stories intact, LEGO Marvel’s Avengers sees you flit about between a number of the films, including The Avengers, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Captain America: The First Avenger, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Iron Man 3, and Thor: The Dark Word. That may seem like a lot, however, we only get a few pieces from most in order to pad out the story and pay out some backstory and context… for the most part you’ll be working your way through The Avengers and Age of Ultron. So you’d better like combat.


The usual LEGO gameplay is in force, with little tinkering. While the lack of a real shake up to the formula may cause the usual groans, it should come as no real surprise by now, in all honesty. You know what you’re signing up for. And though it may be a source of frustration or tedium for some, with familiarity indeed breeding contempt, that same familiarity can be a boon, with the game being remarkably easy to slip into. If you’ve played one, you can pretty much play them all, and it can make sinking into the action that much simpler when you know what to expect and what you’re likely to need to do.

legoavengersrev3Exploration, destruction, and construction are the name of the game, as usual – you’ll be breaking, building, exploding, pausing for witty dialogue or slapstick moments, snoring through QTEs, and solving puzzles. The usual environmental puzzles are to be found here, such as switches, clearing paths using explosives or lasers, opening doors, and using the environment to take down bad guys. Each team member has a few special moves, such as Captain America using his shield to put out fires or open switches, or Black Widow being able to stealth herself in order to sneak past security cameras, although some of the moves are fiddly and more than a touch tedious. Trying to get in the right position to use Stark’s new laser-cutting ability is one example, and the endless fucking scanning/console manipulation/general tech faffing was supremely irritating.

The Quinjet scene stood out for me as a pain in the neck – not only were there the usual LEGO camera-induced depth-perception issues, but throw in the battle ‘screen shake’, near insta-death fire, and pain-in-the-arse re-spawning enemies who crowd you at busy moments, and you’ve recipe for frustration that would have even Delia melting down in tears. But hey, with all that going on, let’s scan some more stuff or play a match-pairs mini-game in order to progress – that won’t be annoying.


General combat – and you’ll be seeing a great deal of that – is pretty much the same as in past games, although team combos have been introduced and make good use of the dynamic between the characters. Cap and Thor can team up together, for example, with Thor using his hammer on Cap’s shield to send out a devastating shockwave. Characters can pull off special takedown moves too, with button prompts appearing above enemies’ heads, although these take a surprising time to play out to the point where I stopped bothering pretty early on. The perma-nags for them were somewhat irritating, and when you have a crowd of enemies around you the button prompts can obscure the action.

legoavengersrev5The bigger set pieces and boss fights are pretty spectacular looking and cover what we’d expect from the films, such as everyone facing off against Loki, the three way scrap between Cap, Iron Man and Thor, and Iron Man and his Hulkbuster armour against Hulk. These scenes are interspersed with moments of classic LEGO humour, which is a good thing, since they are pretty bloody dull. Too many boss fights seem to descend into seemingly unending QTEs, in which player involvement is at a minimum. Too often I found myself wanting them to end so that I could get on with the damn game, which is a shame.

As far as the humour goes, it’s the usual slapstick LEGO stuff: sight gags, prat-falls, wildlife, and … Stan Lee everywhere. Sadly, we don’t get to appreciate the films’ one liners as much as we could have because of the uneven audio. Some of the voice work lifted from the films is just fine, while other sections are tinny or muffled. Visually, however, the game is lovely, with the non-LEGO surroundings detailed and gorgeous if you take a break from the block-smashing action for a few moments and appreciate them. As for the rest, the graphics are crisp and colourful and the characters (of which there are a wealth to unlock) are well presented.


A key part of the LEGO games are the hub worlds, and here we have a treat, with many on offer from the films, including Manhattan, Asgard, Barton’s Farm, S.H.I.E.L.D. Base, and more. Barton Farm is a gorgeous standout and a welcome break from the cities and tech-riddled ships, bases, and palces we play through, while Manhattan is a sprawling playground – you’ll need a vehicle, though, as it is massive. This can mean that boredom sets in pretty quickly when you’re trying to get somewhere specific in the city, but on the upside there is much to explore and uncover.

While not the best entry in the LEGO series, it’s a decent enough one, although there are too many points where boredom and frustration set in. As ever, it comes down to what floats your boat, as a big slice of the enjoyment of any LEGO game is often dependant on how much you enjoy the franchise it is aping.

  • A lot of content here, with not only the two Avengers films but elements of many of the other Marvel films
  • Team combos and good co-op opportunities
  • Large roster of characters
  • Many hub worlds to explore
  • Typical LEGO humour is always enjoyable
  • Stan Lee
  • Stan Lee
  • Too many QTEs…
  • Which drag on far too long
  • Combo prompts got in the way and were annoying
  • Some audio issues
  • Over reliance on the tech skills resulted in frustration and boredom
  • Lots of little irritations soon stack up

LEGO takes on the Marvel cinematic universe and the results are as one would expect: action packed, filled with one-liners and characters we know and love. The typical LEGO gameplay is present, with a few additions, and the familiarity allows players to slip back into the action with ease. However, the game suffers from a number of issues, including some uneven audio, too many QTEs (which drag on far too long), and over reliance on tech skills, to name but a few.

The result is a just about above-average game that descends a touch too often into tedium or annoyance. However, if the Marvel films are your thing you’ll likely be able to overlook or forgive the various moments of irritation because, after all, the skin of a LEGO game can often go a long way towards how enjoyable it is.

If you want to see a LEGO Tony Stark struggling to get into his suit, Thor boogying beside a grand piano, or have the chance to smash Stan Lee into a dozen pieces, then this one’s for you.

Our review policy

Last five articles by Lorna


One Comment

  1. Rook says:

    To cross Manhattan in free roam I always chose Iron Man and fly wherever I needed to go. The thing I didn’t like about this game was the unending string of enemies attacking you when all you want to is push/pull/build and instead another enemy moves in so you hit them instead.

Leave a Comment