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How many Marvel characters can you name off the top of your head? Marvel list 1,368 on their website. So why do we see the same handful over and over again? Spider-Man, The X-Men and the Fantastic Four seem to be the only characters that developers are interested in. Wolverine is cool and all, but how many games can you play with him as the star before claws and heightened senses become boring? Along comes Activision with Marvel: Ultimate Alliance and suddenly we have over 20 playable characters and a cast of more than 140, goodies and baddies including characters seldom seen in games such as Thor, Ghost Rider and Electra.
Ultimate Alliance is an action RPG and plays much the same as the X-Men: Legends games. However, there are a few differences in the way the game plays. For example, characters are advanced by a series of skins, essentially different costumes that impart different abilities to the characters. For example, Spidey's black symbiote uniform increases his strength and speed. The notable attention to detail here is that all of the skins represent stages of the characters' progressions throughout the comic books they have appeared in. Other than progression, you have a great deal of control over the characters in your super team, including naming the team itself and building the roster of heroes to draw on. There are stats bonuses for using teams that exist in the Marvel Universe, but you can also establish new teams that you have always wanted to see fighting together. Only four characters can be active at a time, but your roster can include more.
With 17 locations, a plot by C.B. Cebulski, numerous sub-quests and the fate of the entire Marvel Universe in your hands, Ultimate Alliance will keep Marvel-loving RPG fans playing late into the night.