Zen Pinball 2 might be a free download, but the tables aren’t. The question is: How do you decide which is worth buying and which isn’t? We’re going to put together a series of reviews which might just help.
Let’s kick things off with movie-licensed table, Marvel’s Avengers Assemble.
Version Tested: Wii U
Release: Out Now
This table is inspired by Marvel’s box-office smashing movie release, Avenger’s Assemble and features rather-lame actor likenesses of all the cast, including Captain America, Hawkeye and The Incredible Hulk. Chris Hemsworth has never looked so … not like Chris Hemsworth.
Fortunately, the rest of the experience is pretty darn solid. Players must choose an Avenger themed pinball, coloured and styled to look like their human counterpart. To support this, each one has attributes appropriate to the Avenger its meant to represent.
Captain America is a specialist at combos, but also ball saving. Meanwhile, Hawkeye is great for skillshots and kickbacks. Hulk is a powerball and gains extra emphasis on the bumpers, slings and, of course, power shots.
Iron Man is a lot more tactical and uses a shield to deflect anomolies. Iron Man also accumulates bonus multipliers much easier than the others.
Thor wields the power of Odin Force which is great at moving around the table, and also spinner, which allows the ball to gain a ton more momentum when being flicked back and for.
Finally, Black Widow is all about the mission and not only gains extra points for following instruction, but also gets a Quinjet bonus when that is activated on the table.
The mission itself is to save the day and defeat the crazed god, Loki from overthrowing Earth. Of course it is.
Zen Studios have done a great job in giving each ball identity, making the experience unique and engaging each and every time. Ultimately, this has a beneficial impact on the table as a whole, and adds a wealth of replayability.
The table itself seems basic on the whole, though mission objectives such as the Avenger’s ship coming under attack and decks getting set on fire add some nice tense, fast-paced moments, throwing extra balls into the mix, as well as increasing the speed at which they head towards the bumpers. Using the various attributes of the pinballs to bypass the different obstacles means players constantly have to keep on their toes. It makes the Avengers Assemble table especially dynamic and interesting.
The table’s sweet spot can be found in the top right, in-between the bumpers. Here, players can rack up a nice set of points. On the whole though, the table is well-structured and points can be gathered from anywhere.
Even when you zip around the table, Loki will throw taunts in your direction, making comments such as ’What did you manage to avenge today?’
This isn’t just a standard movie-themed table. Zen have done a fantastic job keeping it authentic, but also keeping it interesting for many, many playthroughs. Highly recomended.
On the outside, it’s just another movie cash-in. On the inside, its a deep, fulfiling and very rewarding experience. Genuine pinball fun to be had here.