Captain America & The Avengers

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The game itself is fairly short, similar to the X-Men Arcade game, but in our case it was a good thing because we were popping in quarters until the game was finished. As someone lost all his lives, someone else was cranking them in so we could complete it. ~Matt McKee

Captain America & The Avengers

This review is based on the 1991 Data East arcade game involving the Marvel Comics superhero group.

I was always a huge comic book fan, with Captain America being one of my favorites, and by proxy…The Avengers. Combining my love of comics and games, it seems I would like nothing more than to play a superhero-based game. This game is a traditional side-scrolling beat-em-up that alternates between that and some shooting screens, just enough diversity to make things interesting without taking too much away from the arcadey action.

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I remember (what I think) was the first time I played it. My older brother was away at college and a buddy and I went to visit him for the weekend. While we were there, the three of us and a friend of my brother (another comic geek) went to the the mall arcade. Now, there were a lot of heroes present; A man saving a woman from a giant monkey, another flying his spaceship defending the Earth, a third eating ghosts…Okay, the last one is not really a “hero”, but the point is there was no one around to stop the Red Skull and his lackeys, and they needed stopping…. ’cause as the great sports hero, Mark McGwire, once said, “Nazis….is bad.”

The game itself is fairly short, similar to the X-Men Arcade game, but in our case it was a good thing because we were popping in quarters until the game was finished. As someone lost all his lives, someone else was cranking them in so we could complete it.

Captain_America_&_The_Avengers_gameplay-screenshot
You play as any one of 4 Avengers who have close-up and long-range battle attacks. Captain America slings his mighty shield, Iron Man shoots his repulsor beams, Hawkeye’s bow and arrows, or Vision…with his……visiony-like thing that he does. You’ll fight through lesser villains like Klaw, The Living LaserWhirlwindSentinelsWizard, TheGrim Reaper, The MandarinUltron, and Crossbones. That’s a lot of sweet Marvel-villain action. Fighting through the levels, you will gain assistance from hero friends like NamorWonder Man, and the Wasp, who will drop power-ups, health, and give you moral support.

Graphically, everybody is bright and comic-book perfect. Even when there’s a lot of action going on at once, there’s no slowdown and it easy to see what’s going on amongst the chaos. Some fun, loud, energetic music accompanies the heroes throughout the mission, and is a welcome addition.

The plot of the game is pretty unimportant sadly, but all you need to know is Red Skull is a bad guy, so give me someone to hit.

Although this game is known for the crazy English translations (you have to play it to appreciate it), it’s truly a fun beat-em-up with 4 people using superpowers, and that’ll always get a thumbs-up in my book. I also owned the Sega Genesisversion, and played that to death…a very fine port. But, if you have a chance to play this on MAME, you won’t be disappointed.

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Matt McKee

42 year old gamer, retro and current, that loves to talk and write about it. I'd be honored to be part of your circle.