Metascore
82

Generally favorable reviews - based on 68 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 59 out of 68
  2. Negative: 0 out of 68
  1. 100
    A fantastic game. It's got everything - easy, varied and interesting combat, a huge roster of superheroes and supervillains, gorgeous visual effects, plus it's easily the most entertaining game I've played online in a long, long time.
  2. The critical path is incredibly long and is joined by bonus comic missions for most of the characters. The teammate AI is very impressive, often getting to baddies before you even see them, but once again, Raven has designed a game that is better through cooperative play.
  3. The game includes tons of gameplay, a plethora of Marvel characters, a great presentation, and successfully balances the action and RPG elements, while letting players choose just how much they want to micromanage.
  4. 90
    What Raven has delivered is a very tight group of popular and unique superheroes that many players will enjoy playing as. Their struggle against the Masters of Evil plays out like a comic geek’s wet dream.
  5. Powers, outfits, gear...everything super about each combatant can be modded, and hot-swapping powers puts the gamut of their abilities at your fingertips. [Dec. 2006, p.82]
  6. A super-powered blast of a game.
  7. If you’ve ever enjoyed an X-men Legends game, MUA is a step above and beyond that. RPG and dungeon crawler fans along with comic-book lovers will find much to love about MUA.
  8. With better focus on what players want, including four (useful!) costumes per character, a plethora of villians and heroes from Marvel lore, better visuals, tighter RPG elements, less of the Chatty-Cathy moments, and FAR more tough boss and mini-boss battles, Marvel Ultimate Alliance could be the geekfest that keeps players wrapped onto whatever platform they chose like a pair of tight blue spandex with a big 4 on the chest.
  9. Sure, the levels and even the gameplay get a bit repetitive at times, but there is always great action and the potential to share that action with your friends, and that is what really make this game rise above its predecessors and a total joy to play.
  10. It's got more Marvel Superheroes and Villans than I knew even existed. It's got the same rock-solid gameplay I've come to expect. And it's got some nice new team focus additions that make the game even better.
  11. 90
    While on the surface it might seem like a mindless brawler, it's surprisingly robust, and is one of few games that really lets you feel like the heroes you're portraying.
  12. Whether you’re a comic book fan, RPG lover, or someone with a passion for multiplayer gaming, Marvel: Ultimate Alliance is exactly what you’re looking for.
  13. 90
    We wish good luck to anyone looking to pry any comic collector they know away from this game long enough to complete a sentence.
  14. Die-hard Marvel fans can adjust the score on Ultimate Alliance about ten points higher. The character dialogue alone will cause numerous geek-outs, chock full of obscure references as it can be. All other comers will find a capable, high quality action RPG that offers a huge amount of customization and a lot of unique characters that are far more than sprite swaps of each other.
  15. 89
    It sets the foundation and future for the franchise on the next-generation. However, if Ultimate Alliance had better playable characters, improved customization and a little more of a challenge in places it would indeed be perfect.
  16. The failings of Marvel Ultimate Alliance, which rob it of achieving videogame immortality, are far outweighed by the novelty of playing a game with so many comic book characters all in one game. It’s addictive fun!
  17. Marvel Ultimate Alliance is a feature-packed game; one of those rare birds that feels like arcade gaming, but with that next-gen edge that helps to justify $400+ dollars of hardware.
  18. 88
    Marvel Ultimate Alliance is the result of two games' worth of experience on Raven Software's part, and it shows.
  19. In the end, Marvel: Ultimate Alliance is a nice refresher from the X-Men Legends series, and a game no comic fan should miss. If you enjoy the arcade-style titles of this nature (such as Gauntlet or the previous Legends titles), you'd also do well to pick the game up.
  20. One of the most enjoyable co-operative games the 360 has seen. Marvel fans should rejoice, this is probably the finest game to use the franchise to date.
  21. A good game with a great longevity factor.
  22. They took the old formula and added some new features making Marvel: Ultimate Alliance one of the most enjoyable experiences I have had on the 360 to date.
  23. A few rough spots, but the "ultimate" in the game's name is no exaggeration.
  24. If you like action-RPGs, superhero games, or both, a smack-tacular adventure awaits. [Holiday 2006, p.82]
  25. Besides just being fun and funny (I found the Pitfall mini-game hilarious for some reason) for Marvel fans, there’s enough here to warrant keeping the game in rotation long after its release.
  26. "X-Men Legends" on steroids. It’s bigger and better.
  27. It’s well put together, there’s plenty of action, nice visuals but most importantly it’s fun to play. Marvel fans themselves will surely be pleased with the amount of content in the game.
  28. A chaotic ride through the Marvel world. Exciting, fun and even moreso when you play with friends.
  29. 85
    If you're looking for an action RPG with and attractive concept and lasting appeal definitely pick this one up.
  30. Undeniably fun, AND has the ability to humble even the biggest self-proclaimed geek, with its staggering amount of characters and references. Its flaws aren't impossible to look past, and with a solid story and improved combat, it's definitely evolved the genre for the better.
  31. Raven improves upon the great work it did with the "X-Men Legends" games, creating a lengthy adventure that touches upon nearly every last corner of the Marvel Universe.
  32. Certain parts need polishing, sure, including AI and level design. But anyone craving superhero action should pick this title up immediately.
  33. Play it in co-op and it's a hoot. A superhero mash-up that's simple but top fun. [Christmas 2006, p.80]
  34. Really, anyone that loved those side-scrolling beat-‘em-ups from arcades past owes it to themself to give Marvel: Ultimate Alliance a spin.
  35. Ultimate Alliance may be schlocky and unrefined, but the endless Dream Team combinations of Marvel super and not-so-super heroes prove irresistible.
  36. The huge cast of characters and unlockable extras helps push it over the top.
  37. 82
    Despite a few welcome wrinkles to combat and character customization, this is pretty much the same game we have seen before. The level design and puzzles are a snooze, lacking any innovation. But who cares? This game is about gathering a few friends and laying the smack down on some villains.
  38. With so many notable faces, the story is long enough to introduce each without problem, while offering plenty of time to augment your team’s dynamic range of statistics.
  39. Marvel Ultimate Alliance is certainly worth picking up. With an adequate campaign and more playable comic book characters than you can shake a stick at, plus bonus side missions for all of them, you’re definitely getting more than what you paid for.
  40. All the Marvel superheroes you ever wanted (except for Hulk) plus more. This is what we were expecting - epic superhero action-adventure with role playing elements. [Jan 2007]
  41. Another solid amazing effort in the Marvel Universe.
  42. Activision ups the ante on action RPG with the whole cast of the Marvel universe. Insanely cool boss fights and solid online support makes this an easy choice for fans.
  43. It's a well-made game that you can try again and again with numerous heroes and their plethora of powers. If you're a comic-book fan, this is probably the most satisfying videogame ever made for you.
  44. If you're a fan of the "X-Men Legends" games that have appeared over the last few years you'll know what to expect from Marvel: Ultimate Alliance, but you'll probably still be surprised at how polished and lengthy the game is.
  45. Boasting the largest collection of Marvel heroes and villains in one title, Marvel Ultimate Alliance is a terrific game for the die-hard fan of Marvel comics.
  46. Boasting the largest cast of Marvel Characters ever assembled into a single game, Marvel Ultimate Alliance is a comic book fans dream game.
  47. 80
    Simply great fun to play. It embodies everything in the Marvel universe, which is a legendary license unto itself, while simultaneously providing an extremely solid Action RPG experience.
  48. If you liked "X-Men Legends," you'll love Marvel Ultimate Alliance, with its roster of two dozen playable heroes from every corner of the Marvel universe. But please, let's see She-Hulk in the sequel, OK?
  49. As a consumer who’s already purchased and played through two X-Men Legends game, I was expecting a bit more of a departure from the safe, established franchise.
  50. Action/RPGs tap into some inherent need to button-mash and kill countless foes, while still strategizing a bit with your party and their attributes so you don't feel brainless -- and this may be the best sci-fi themed entry in the genre to date.
  51. 80
    Where most super-hero games are satisfied with mediocrity, Marvel: Ultimate Alliance aims high and blasts its target into smithereens. 'Nuff said!
  52. 80
    There's a lot of fun to be had with the slew of comic legends at your disposal. If you're a fan of X-Men Legends, then it's safe to say that MUA is right up your alley.
  53. While this game isn’t a must buy, it is a must play for RPG fans, especially those who own the X-Men Legend series of games.
  54. The gameplay could have used some more originality outside of "let's beat everything up", but Ultimate Alliance basically hits the mark with thunderous force.
  55. Though not that pretty to look at, it serves its purpose as a fast, multiplayer friendly old school beat-em up, even if its all been done before.
  56. It's a bright shiny toy of a game and so many of the heroes are familiar to even the least comic book savvy, that one can't help but enjoy mixing and matching teams and playing with special powers and cool abilities. The boss battles and the level design are derivative of titles we've seen before, and the camera never really pulls us into the action, but my hours spent with the game so far have been button mashing heaven.
  57. 75
    Plays like Raven Software’s love letter to the Marvel Universe and improves on a tiring game formula with more depth and customization. Though not that pretty to look at, it serves its purpose as a fast, multiplayer friendly old school beat-em up, even if its all been done before.
  58. A must for Marvel fans, a good buy for everyone else, Ultimate Alliance is an epic in an old package, kind of like those massy boxes of comics you have hidden away in your attic, gathering ebay value like dust.
  59. Marvel Ultimate Alliance does what few do – it actually improves on the two original games and adds something new to the series.
  60. The backdrops are more diverse, the "God of War"-like quick-time events add some much-needed flavor to boss encounters, and item maintenance is now kept to a minimum. [Jan. 2007, p.102]
  61. With an excellent atmosphere, diverse set of characters, intriguing storyline and endless unlockables it's the sort of game that's essential for comic book obsessives, and great fun for everyone else.
  62. Fans of the Marvel universe will no doubt lap it up.
  63. It's got potential but it needs less linear gameplay. [Issue 14, p.89]
  64. Don't buy it looking for huge innovations, but by all means expect entertainment by the superhero-load. [Issue 18, p.72]
  65. Having such a wide collection of super heroes to choose from certainly lifts this above the likes of X-Men Legends, and it's storyline (and the underlying question of a traitor in the ranks) certainly offers something quite engaging.
  66. 70
    More than enough fun to last through the main story -- especially if you bring a couple friends -- but whether you'll be returning to it again and again over the course of months is dependent largely on your superhero obsession and tolerance for repetition.
  67. The actual action-adventure gameplay and the plot is pretty boring for all but hardcore comic book guys, but it's obscured behind a gloss of heroic RPG add-ons. [Christmas 2006, p.84]
  68. Some locations are dreary trudges through dull space-station corridors, but others show more imagination, such as giant pinball tables and underwater in Atlantis.
User Score
7.3

Mixed or average reviews- based on 96 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 30
  2. Negative: 4 out of 30
  1. Apr 10, 2011
    10
    I felt obligated to review this game after reading the user scores. I bought this game on a used shelf at gamespot, played it for like 10 minutes, then didn't touch it for a long time. Years even. Like most of the bad reviews, at first glance the characters don't seem that different from each other and the perspective seems a little too removed from the combat. The first level (which I never got past at first) seemed almost generic and I thought the whole game was going to be like that. All of that first glance stuff is utterly wrong, and it is a tragedy that players didn't get deeper into it and spread the word. This is one of the most addictive games I have ever played. The music is varied and great, the game is epic long with many pretty locations. The characters follow a basic template, but vary in unique ways that you wouldn't expect from a game that looks like this. Just try using a couple and seeing the differences. Spider man swings from the ceiling, Thor flies, Captain America has his signature homing shield attack teleporters can warp through walls, iceman can cold blast fires out etc. It's more than enough to make the characters fun and not just seem like alternate skins. Especially when you consider that focusing on even just one character is pretty addictive. However a note: I suggest you either pick up the special edition (aka platinum edition), or gold if you can find a good price. You can't download the DLC for this game anymore, so you better get it with the purchase. Alternatively you could get the PC version and mods to let you use other characters including ones from PSP version, and even made up characters.

    Either way you will have a hard time finding online players. Get a friend involved or browse some still active forums for the game at sites like gamefaqs.
    Full Review »
  2. Aug 1, 2014
    0
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. Ok I had really high hopes for this game after all the positive feedback it's received from here and actual critics. But I was sadly disappointed. I have played both Xmen Legends games and loved them both, even with the occasional flaw. This game started out ok, but didn't last. I decided just for fun to unlock all the playable characters. This left me feeling really disappointed. There were a total of maybe 12. Marvel has a huge world of characters yet the character list was shorter than a 10 year olds attention span. Secondly, the DLC is no longer for sale so the characters that are DLC only are no longer able to be reached. Now lets hit some of the characters, Wolverine and Deadpool both are mutants with a healing factor, so ideally it would be part of the character, but nope, it's part of costumes you can unlock. Another major flaw is the super attack you eventually unlock for every character, if you do yours everyone on your team that has it available follows suit, wasting possible 1 to 3 super finishers. Thirdly stairs.... Stairs in this game are so terrible that when you land on them while jumping you slide down them. Last on my list is Deadpools teleport ability instead of a double jump. While sometimes you could do it through doors others wouldn't allow you to, yet hitting a certain spot on the door and poof you're through. Then at a point you need to double jump to make a set of 3 gaps where dragon statues breath fire, Deadpool just sticks in mid air and swings his Katana's. All in all i payed 6 bucks for this game used in a bundle with Forza 2 and wish i hadn't. do not play this game!!!! Full Review »
  3. Jan 16, 2014
    9
    Marvel:Ultimate Alliance is a gem that should be bought by anyone who has a love for Marvel or any of it's characters. Before this game, Comic book characters were werent getting games that made gamers more interested into reading the fiction that the characters were based off of. X-men was garnering the attention of the common folk with their successful movies and its beloved and greatly played X-men Legends,along with its sequel,Rise Of Apocalypse. But who knew those two games would be the foundation for what was known for the only game featuring the most characters ever represented from Marvel in any video game ever? sure,about 24 or so characters were playable,and thats still alot of characters,but with every character you interact with fully voiced, it was still a sight to behold that the spectrum of villains and heroes,from known staples like Wolverine and Spider-Man,to lesser known characters like Vision and Winter Solider,were represented and depicted the way they have and should be. but i digress. the story here starts with the now widely known S.H.I.E.L.D Hellecarrier being attacked by Dr.Doom,forcing Nick Fury to call upon the collective team of Spider-man,Captain America,Thor,and Wolverine to step in and save the day.as the story progresses you will be taken to worlds like Asgard and Atlantica to the Skrull world and Latveria. one of the things this game does right is give you levels that take place in worlds respectfully designed and created depicting their known locales long enough to admire the scenery,but not so long as to overstay their welcome. one level will never feel too much like the last one before it. the story,although not entirely boring or original,does its job into justifying why and where you're going to where the game takes you. it serves it's purpose into keeping you involved or interested,if not anything else, reason to continue playing just to see where it takes you next. this game has also been released on virtually every platform,so accessibility to enjoying it is hardly a issue for anyone(except the GBA version,which is a colossal mess of a game).the graphics,no matter what version you pick up,is serviceable. while the Xbox360 is the best looking and the preferred console to play it on, the PS2,Xbox,and PSP renditions go down this Comic Book look and color,which works perfectly for the game,while the 360 shoots for a more realistic,detailed design. the gameplay should be familiar to anyone whos played the X-men Legends titles or a Diablo game. it sports an over-the-top view of a team of 4 super heroes you put together,unlocking more characters to play as you go on. while everyones powers arent completely distinct from one another,visually they depict the superhero well,and visually thats all you could ask for.it doesn't bring the game down,but it is somewhat of a disappointment,if not expected game design,seeing how they've crammed so much into one game alone. the gameplay is where this game is either made or broke. luckily,that is something that makes this game fun and involving. every character has powers showcasing the super in superhero.and as the game progresses they learn new powers through an RPG-like system of leveling up,so if you decide to play with the same superheroes throughout your adventure,you still wouldn't feel bored of playing this game. sure,the critics can complain about the game being repetitive, but i would reply by asking "wouldn't all games be repetitive?" in first person shooters,you're always firing at something. in RPG games,you follow a set structure to achieve the same goal. in Racing games,you're always going for first place.but then why doesn't it feel that way for those genres? same reason i would tell you for this game:it's because of the little details and the variation of the goals themselves and how they are depicted. sure,you'll be fighing one clone enemy after another,to which visually they differ from level to level,but are generally fought the same,sometimes they have shields you need to either remove or attack around,sometimes they have health regeneration that revive fallen enemies and continue healing themselves,and other times they have resistance to psychic abilities or elemtal attacks like ice and fire.then come the villains,who you will have to fight multiple times in a level. not the same villain,mind you,but for example, in the first level on the hellecarrier,you come across Scorpion. after him,you will then later on come across Nuclear Man and Winter Soldier. then you will come across Fing Fang Foom. so just when you get tired of fighting clone after clone,here comes a challenging and interesting cameo from a villain of the large world of Marvel to come and stop you in your goal. some people may say this is repetition cause in the most general sense this never changes level to level,but like i said,its the small details that make it feel different. the sound is servicable,but not oscar winning by any means. youll love MUA Full Review »