Worst & Best Comic Book Games
Marvel vs. Capcom 2: New Age of Heroes (Dreamcast, PS2, Xbox)
Marvel vs. Capcom 2 is only half comic book-inspired; the other half is made up of classic video game characters we all know and love. But with Capcom at the helm, this fighter truly shined, offering tournament-quality fighting goodness that’s still a ton of fun a decade later. It offered so many playable characters that MvC3’s 36 characters (38 if you buy the DLC) seem meager in comparison.
This game was so great that it deserves a spot on this list, even if it’s only half a comic book game. Besides, how many game franchises can you think of that allow you to Hadoken Spider-Man in the face?
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Arcade)
Everyone’s favorite turtles did their time on the comic book scene before becoming a megahit show in the 1980s that spawned the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles megahit arcade game. It was a side-scrolling beat ’em up that got pretty much everything right.
Of course, we were horrified when TMNT finally arrived on NES and it was a completely different game. This was rectified with TMNT2, but the NES wasn’t exactly powerful enough to handle all the frenetic turtle power. Or maybe it was all the pizza.
< p class=”editorial-p”> Anyone old enough to remember the arcades of the early 1990s will most likely also remember happily losing fistfuls of quarters to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction (PS2, Xbox, Gamecube)
Unlike the other Hulk game on this list, this one got the smashing thing right. And that’s all we’ll ever need from a Hulk game. Enough said.
Scott Pilgrim vs. the World: The Game (PSN, XBLA)
A downloadable game riding the hype train of a comic book-based movie sounds like it should be awful. However, the Scott Pilgrim game took the source material’s fascination with video games and used that to its advantage. It pays homage to the entire history of gaming, with a retro aesthetic and countless references to much-loved games like Mario and Guitar Hero.
It comes packed with 2D beat ’em up gameplay reminiscent of TMNT2, Battletoads, and Streets of Rage. Add perhaps one of the best 8-bit soundtracks since Mega Man 3 and this is one game that made old school gamers weep pixilated tears of joy.
This was more than a comic book game; it was a love letter to gaming.
Batman: Arkham Asylum (PS3, Xbox 360, PC)
It’s hard to deny that Batman: Arkham Asylum raised the bar drastically for the comic book game. Its success was largely due to the fact that it took Batman’s definitive skill set—gadgetry, detective skills, and stealth—and based its gameplay around that, rather than trying to cram the Dark Knight into whatever genre was popular at the time.
Exploring Arkham Asylum, hunting down Joker, being taunted by the sexy Harley Quinn, and solving the Riddler’s puzzles kept us busy for hours upon hours. And the from-above takedown that let us hang Arkham inmates upside-down was among the best moves in the history of stealth gaming. The icing on the cake, though, was a great story penned by Paul Dini, who has written enough Batman comics in his day to know how to provide a Batman tale that feels exactly like a good Batman tale should.
Arkham Asylum was a great game all around, and Arkham City, the upcoming sequel, is sure to be another megahit.
I’m sure there are personal favorites and least favorites which failed to make this list, so, by all means, use the comments section below to plead the case for your entry, or to reopen the wounds of a horrid game worth of an extra dash of salt.
By Joshua Wirtanen
CCC Editor / Contributing Writer
*The views expressed within this article are solely the opinion of the author and do not express the views held by Cheat Code Central.*