Marvel Pinball

What we liked:
+ Four tables, one low price
+ Lush visuals
+ Great ball physics
+ Leaderboards
What we didn't like:
- Iron Man table feels rushed
Rating
9.0
Excellent
DEVELOPER: Zen Studios   |   PUBLISHER: Zen Studios   |   RELEASE: 12/08/2010

Zen sure makes a mean pinball.

When Pinball FX 2 launched last month we all agreed around the office that this was the definitive virtual Pinball game currently available. The ability to add more tables down the line was just icing on an already sweet piece of cake. Little did we know that the new tables would come so fast, and not to mention with so much quality. Marvel Pinball is the first themed pack of tables for FX 2 and their quality is definitely impressive. Regardless of whether you are fan of the comic series or not, there is definitely an impressive amount of content wrapped into this package.

In total there are four tables, each one modeled after a character from the Marvel universe. It is no surprise that these four particular characters are also the four that have their own movies. Wolverine, Spider-Man, Blade and of course everyone’s favorite alcoholic Iron Man. Each table also comes with its own themes, special power-ups and challenges as well as a host of voice over work and other goodies. The fan service is definitely going to get fans of the comics excited, but when you combine that with some truly great pinball action, you get four quality tables that anyone can enjoy.


If you have played the previous version of Pinball FX then you know that attention to detail is one of Zen Studios’ finer aspects. The ball physics and table layout are exquisite to say the least, and you can tell that the studio is definitely a fan of the license. Each table is constructed with such care that fans will be geeking out at every turn. For instance the Spider-Man table is chock full of boss encounters with the likes of Goblin and Doc Ock as well as score bonuses and other goodies featuring the rest of the wall crawler’s crew. This is by far the star of the package, and the one you will likely spend the most time with.

Coming in a close second is Wolverine’s table. This features battles with Sabretooth as well as plenty of adamantium goodness. Small touches such as bonding with the Weapon X tank and showdowns with massive Sentinels definitely up the ante in regards to fan service. Next up is everyone’s favorite half-breed Blade. While not nearly as viable as he once was, this vampire hunter delivers with a unique, if not dark table, which features plenty of ghoulish activities. You will encounter Deacon Frost as well as help from Whistler at times. The final addition is easily the most weak. Iron Man may be Marvel’s hot franchise right now, but this table is easily the least inspired of the bunch. Featuring some of his lesser-known villains and not a whole lot of diversity to the table, it almost feels like it was unfinished when it shipped. Still three out of four is a fantastic ratio, and more than make the package worth the price of admission.


As I mentioned the ball physics and table layouts are definitely stellar, and they are backed up by impressive visuals. All of the tables are lively and colorful making for a generally entertaining experience. The exception might be the Blade table which is fairly dark and sometimes hard to decipher. The extras of Pinball FX 2 are also included in the Xbox 360 version. Here like any other table collection they are integrated into the overall product including leaderboards and rivalries between people on your friends list. The PS3 version is actually a stand-alone product that separates itself from the FX 2 hub. This makes picking a version easy if you have the option as the integration and score comparisons of the overall experience are one of the most addicting things about Pinball FX 2.

When the game released last month I instantly knew Zen had something special on the horizon. If we continue to get quality tables like this in the future, this could easily be the only pinball game you will ever need. As it stands this Marvel collection is fantastic for both fans of the comic, as well as just fans of pinball itself. The quality of the tables will have you playing for months and climbing the leaderboards will have you coming back constantly. Pinball FX 2 is one of the best impulse games on the market. It is great for twenty minute sessions or two hour marathons. If you are a fan of pinball in general, you need to download this impressive collection.

Review copy provided by publisher.

Ken McKown

Ken is the Editor-in-Chief of this hole in the wall and he loves to troll for the fun of it. He also enjoys long walks through Arkham Asylum and the cool air of Shadow Moses Island. His turn-ons include Mortal Kombat, Metal Gear Solid and StarCraft.