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Pinball FX 2: Fantastic Four Reviewed by Cyril Lachel on . While not as bad as the movies, Fantastic Four proves to be the worst of the Marvel Pinball tables. The colorful graphics and unique missions aren't enough to overcome the disappointing level design and weird bonus games. Hopefully everybody involved can learn from the slight misstep! Rating: 64%
Pinball FX 2: Fantastic Four
Pinball FX 2: Fantastic Four Pinball FX 2: Fantastic Four Pinball FX 2: Fantastic Four Pinball FX 2: Fantastic Four
  • Review Score:

  • B-
Although it may have sounded strange at first, Pinball FX 2: Marvel Pinball was the perfect marriage of licensed property and traditional flipper action. Given its success, I knew it was only a matter of time before another superhero stepped up with their own unique pinball table. But who would it be?

The obvious choice would be to go with Thor, who is currently being seen hammering the competition at the box office. Perhaps a better choice would be Captain America, who is on deck to steal some of Thor's thunder. Or maybe they could go with a lesser known Avenger, such as Nick Fury, Black Widow or Hawkeye. Sadly the developers decided to go another direction, giving us a brand new table dedicated to the Fantastic Four.

Pinball FX 2: Fantastic Four (XBLA)

Even if the selection feels like it came out of left field, there's no denying that this Fantastic Four table has a lot to offer. The design is busy, full of ramps and obstacles. You'll find all four characters cluttering up the surroundings, each ready to take on Doctor Doom, the arch-nemesis who sits patiently waiting on the top edge of the table. And like any good Fantastic Four story, your only hope rests in using the strengths of each one of these beloved heroes.

The table consists of several unique missions, each taking into account the Four's special abilities. Mister Fantastic, for example, stretches his arm to snag your pinball. On the other hand, The Thing literally punches the ball all over the table and the Human Torch catches your ball on fire. From time to time these four heroes will have to go up against Doctor Doom and his Doombots, forcing players to aim their balls carefully.

Pinball FX 2: Fantastic Four (XBLA)

Although the download has all the hallmarks of the other Marvel tables, I found myself constantly frustrated by a placement of ramps and obstacles. I was annoyed that so many of my deaths felt unavoidable; it often seemed like I had very little control over my fate. I found that I was having to tilt the table more than usual, which is different from how I normally play Pinball FX 2.

The score discrepancy is also disappointing. You either score extremely low or earn a record-breaking high score, there's very little middle ground. Once you have completed some of the missions it becomes strangely difficult to lose, giving players a lot of opportunities to earn millions of points. The swing from painfully difficult to insanely easy a bit jarring, suggesting that there is far too much emphasis on completing these ho-hum missions.

Pinball FX 2: Fantastic Four (XBLA)

Visually the table holds its own, thanks in large part to the vibrant colors and constant action happening on screen. The artwork that adorns the table is also fetching, though I suspect it has something to do with Sue Storm. The character models look good and this fits in perfectly with the other four Marvel tables. Still, there's nothing about this table that stands out, especially when compared to the stellar Blade table.

Even with my reservations, this Fantastic Four table is cheap enough to warrant the purchase. It may not be as solid as Marvel Pinball or the recent Mars table, but I like the direction Zen Studios is taking this series. There are some good ideas in Pinball FX 2: Fantastic Four, too bad they are obstructed by the disappointing level design.
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