Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects PSP Review
Mishandled is the best way to describe what EA's done with the Marvel license. The union was supposed to usher in a new energetic fighting game, and instead we received Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects. Granted, some of the game's ideas look excellent on paper, but the execution is about as flawed as Spider-Man without his web slinging abilities. The console version is a huge disappointment and I assumed that the hand held one would be just as disastrous.
The PSP version takes a slightly different route, however, and manages to be a bit better. It's still not the wonderful brawling effort it could have been (imagine if the Tekken team had worked on this game), but it's manageable and will please comic book fans on-the-go. The plot follows the same story as the console versions in that you have to take several classic Marvel superheroes and battle against a group of Imperfects, created by a mad scientist to wreak havoc. It's not rocket science, but then again, since when is a comic book's narrative ever rocket science?
The cool thing about the handheld version of Marvel Nemesis is it focuses on what's important: fighting. Gone is the lame single player mode where you have to work your way across a number of tiring tasks in order to progress, and in its place is just the brawling aspect.
The gameplay still isn't as solid as I'd like for it to be, as it consists of bland 3-D brawling across a number of arenas, with many destructible elements and the occasional cool move that signifies what a hero can do. I wish the controls were just a bit tighter on this version, and I also wish there was a bit more balance thrown into the picture, as some fighters have an easy advantage over others. However, there is a neat card-based system that gives you power ups after each round, and it pleasantly adds to the mix and the unpredictability of each match.
The game looks alright. It's nothing to write home about but at least the visuals seem a little brighter than the failed console efforts. Animation is pretty good, although some characters animate better than others, and the backdrops look great, although the camera can be a pain in the neck sometimes in terms of trying to see what you're doing. Sound doesn't deliver anything explosive but the game has a decent soundtrack and sound effects, as well as the occasional commentary by your character.
It's kind of odd how a PSP version of a game would manage to be better than one that appears on the consoles, but then again, the DS version is horrible, so I guess there's got to be some kind of balance. Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects isn't a top recommendation for the system, as it suffers from too many flaws that were implemented into the formula to begin with. However, it's still sufficient entertainment for comic book fans, and the ability to fight against your friends via Wi-Fi isn't an entirely bad option.
What's Hot: More fighting and less console garbage.
What's Not: It's still Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects.