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Two things that seem like they should go together hand-in-hand are video games and superheroes. Video games remove the limits of the real world, and superheroes push those limits to their max.
But for whatever reason, superhero games have always been pretty hit or miss. The bad ones are incredibly bad and good ones are incredibly good.
Today, we’re going to dig in and look at the ten best superhero games of all time. And not only are we going to pick the ten best, but we’re going to rank them. It’s no easy task, but we’re more than ready for it!
10. The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction
Platform: PlayStation 2, Xbox, and GameCube
Who doesn’t want to smash everything in sight as The Incredible Hulk? That’s exactly what you get to in Ultimate Destruction. The game is an early example of what open-world games were to become, and it’s fantastic. It’s so good, in fact, that it might just make a top-ten list of open-world games.
9. Marvel: Ultimate Alliance
Platform: PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox, Xbox 360, PSP, Wii, PC, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Game Boy Advance
We actually just reviewed the latest game in the Ultimate Alliance franchise, and while it was pretty good, it can’t compare the original. The latest game is more of a beat-em-up, while the original was more like Diablo with the greatest Marvel characters. If you love kicking butt as some of the world’s most powerful superheroes while leveling up and collecting loot, the first M: UA is for you.
8. Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3
Platform: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Vita, PlayStation 4, PC, and Xbox One
Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 is one of the most intense fighting games ever made, and half of the roster just so happens to be made up of Marvel’s best characters. For fans of fighting games and superheroes, UMVC3 scratches all the itches in all the right ways.
7. Spider-Man 2
Platform: Game Boy Advance, GameCube, PC, PlayStation 2, Xbox, N-Gage, Mac, Nintendo DS, and PSP
Spider-Man 2 is one of the most memorable video games of the PS2 generation for a number of reasons. The swinging mechanic mixed with the fact that open-world games were just coming into their own was something special. The fact that it was a great game based on a movie in a time when licensed games were terrible was another impressive feat.
6. Injustice 2
Platform: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, Android, iOS
Injustice 2 takes Mortal Kombat-like gameplay and mixes it with some of the most badass superheroes from the DC universe. The graphics look incredible, the fighting mechanics are fun, and the story is one of the most immersive you’ll ever find in a fighting game.
5. Batman: Arkham Knight
Platform: PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One
Is there a series that defines superhero video games quite like the Arkham series from developer Rocksteady? Arkham Knight was the series’ return to form after the lackluster Arkham Origins. It features villains like Scarecrow, Penguin, Two-Face and Harley Quinn trying to bring down the Batman.
Platform: Arcade (later ported to PS3, Xbox 360, iOS, and Android)
If you want to kick it old school, you can do no better than the X-Men arcade game. It’s a simple side-scrolling beat-em-up that let six players run around and smash the bad guys as Cyclops, Colossus, Wolverine, Storm, Nightcrawler or Dazzler.
3. Batman: Arkham Asylum
Platform: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC, Mac, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One
This is the game that reminded us that superhero games could be good. And it did it in a huge way. I honestly debated putting Arkham Asylum higher on the list, but the game above it just barely beat it out. Still, the things it did to define the superhero genre can’t be understated. The look, the story, and the gameplay all come together to create a game that’s truly a masterpiece.
When a new Spider-Man game was announced, people immediately thought back to the fun they had playing Spider-Man 2 on PlayStation and Xbox. This game had some high expectations, and it actually managed to exceed them all. The open-world is beautiful, the web-swinging feels incredible, the combat is intense, and the story is entertaining. There are really no major flaws.
1. Batman: Arkham City
Platform: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC, Mac, Wii U, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One
And we finally arrive at the greatest superhero video game of all time, and it really was a no-brainer. Arkham City takes everything that made Arkham Asylum great and builds on them. It’s bigger, better, and more badass than the first game. Not only is it the best superhero game ever made, but it’s probably one of the ten best video games of all time, period.