Pinball-FX-2:-Marvel-Pinball---Captain-America-Review Pinball FX 2: Marvel Pinball - Captain America Review

   27/06/2011 at 19:58       Chris OToole       2 COMMENTS. - Score 5/5
 - Pinball FX 2, Marvel Pinball - Captain America, Balls, Lycra, Super Heroes

After the critical success of its previous Marvel tables, can Zen Studios keep up its high levels of consistency with this, its latest release in the Marvel series of pinball table Captain America? It'll take an effort worthy of a Superhero to keep this work rate up without faltering, so let's strap up soldier, and check out Captain America!

After the slight disappointment of the Fantastic Four table (not in the way that the table played, but just because the FF are ever so lame as actual characters), here is the table that topped the most wanted poll on Zen Studio's website, which hopefully means it'll be greeted with more rabid enthusiasm than the super-powered Brady bunch.

Wisely, Zen has chosen to set Captain America during the Second World War, shunning all the modern day tosh prevalent in the modern-day comics. And so here in and among the flippers and lights are sandbags, mineshaft ramps and parachute canopy bumpers.

Special mention should be made of the sound-effects. Superb voice acting can be taken as read with Zen tables, but here the bumpers and ramps all emit the sounds of bloody battle. It might even convert a few of the Call of Duty lot, you never know!

But, how does it play? Well for all you people that took my advice about bought the Mars starter table, Captain America is surely your next evolutionary step. The table is fast, but not stupidly so, and its drains aren't the ball-gobbling whores they can be (Rocky & Bullwinkle I'm looking at you). All of which means you really do have that feeling of being in control. Yes of course, great Pinball should have an element of luck, but it should never be downright unfair, and I'm glad to report I never had this problem playing this new table.

Another great idea carried over from the MARS table is they way it saves certain missions for you, so if you complete two elements of it and your ball drains, the frustration is lessened because the next time you manage to activate it you'll carry on from where you left off. It's a life saver sometimes and has saved my dog/child/kitten from being kicked more than once.

The numbers of missions is impressive too, as you have a set each for hitting the Captain America, Baron Zemo and Red Skull targets. They're all varied and fun, and on this table they actually feel very achievable indeed. I even managed to wake the sleeper robot, on one of the later missions while play-testing for this review. I was so startled and excited I quite literally managed  to drop the ball immediately. I'll get it eventually though, oh yes.

Also worthy of mention is the cosmic cube spinning silently at the top of the table. If you manage to unlock it by hitting a few targets and then smash your ball into it, it'll grant you a fair amount of points and then magically work out where you need your ball most. So in those missions where you can't quite hit that last ramp, the cosmic cube can be a God-send. A helping hand can also be found when you recruit a Howling Commando to help you in your fight. Each of them adds their own perks to your arsenal ranging from from extra point scoring opportunities to Bucky's often invaluable 30% chance to save your ball when you drain.

The animation is also fantastic once again, with the good Captain, Red Skull and Baron Zemo making their rounds over the play field, plus a few hidden surprises. I must also give a shout out to whoever animates the dot matrix graphics over at Zen, as they have done another amazing job on an often over-looked element.

This is another belter of a table and while initially it can seem a little disorganised, after a few credits you'll know exactly what to do, and you'll once again be lost in Zen's pinball wizardry.

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