The world of Marvel has a long and historic association with videogames. The first Spider-Man game adaptation appeared in 1982 for the Atari 2600. It was a basic affair, with its attempt at web-swinging less much the same. This was followed by a series of text-based adventures named Questprobe, featuring The Hulk and The Fantastic Four.
Games have come a long way since the early days, with The Avengers, Spider-Man, The X-Men, and Hulk racking up an impressive number of titles. However, every hero needs supporting characters. Villains and cast members need to be included to prop up the action. Very often, these characters are not the ones you would expect.
10 Norimaro (Marvel Super Heroes Vs. Street Fighter)
Norimaro appeared in the Japanese version of Marvel Super Heroes Vs. Street Fighter. However, he did not belong on any roster. Instead, he was a character collaboration by the studio and Japanese comedian, Noritake Kinashi.
His appearance is that of an old, typical Japanese otaku, dressed in a school uniform. He does not fight at all, but instead makes contact using comedy moves like tripping and slipping. He throws projectiles from his school bag that include stationery and cuddly toys. The character and his existence in the game was baffling, to say the least.
9 Boomerang (The Uncanny X-Men)
Boomerang is, unsurprisingly, an Australian supervillain who utilizes his namesake weapon to assault his enemies. He has appeared as the enemy of many heroes in his time. Most notably he has been a minor henchman for the Kingpin, battling Daredevil and Spider-Man. This makes it all the more confusing as to why he appeared in a game featuring the X-Men.
That game, The Uncanny X-Men, was released on the NES in 1989. It is regarded as one of the worst games ever released on the console, which is really saying something. Amongst stalwarts such as Juggernaut, Magneto, and Sabretooth, it is hard to fathom why the character was included at all.
8 Doctor Minerva (Avengers In Galactic Storm)
Doctor Minerva appeared in the arcade fighting game Avengers in Galactic Storm. In fact, she was part of a roster that reduced heavy hitters like Iron Man and Thor to supporting characters. Instead, you could select the underwhelming Shatterax, Supremor, and Doctor Minerva herself.
Doctor Minerva is a Kree geneticist. She originally appeared in Captain Marvel comics as a scientist who was aiming to create a new Kree breed. She would later appear in Operation Galactic Storm, the comic crossover the game was based on. Appearances since have been very sporadic. However, she did make her MCU debut in the recent Captain Marvel movie.
7 Typhoid Mary (Spider-Man Vs. The Kingpin)
Typhoid Mary had a very fleeting moment in the world of video games. Primarily a character from the Daredevil comics, she is a highly-skilled martial artist. In addition, she has the power of telekinesis and pyrokinesis. Mary has multiple personality disorder, two of which are extremely violent and dangerous.
Typhoid Mary was included in the updated Sega CD version of the Spiderman vs. The Kingpin game originally released for the Sega Genesis/Mega Drive. Players would have to face off against her and Bullseye before reaching the finale.
6 Howard The Duck (Howard The Duck: Adventure On Volcano Island)
What could be stranger than Howard the Duck appearing in over six videogames? The fact that one of them was actually his own. Marvel’s satirical comedy character once even had his own movie. It was the tie in game to that notorious box office flop that resulted in his own title.
Subtitled “Adventure On Volcano Island,” the game was released on a host of home computers including the Commodore 64 and ZX Spectrum and had less than favorable reviews. The game allowed players to take on the role of Howard who had just been parachuted onto the island. Its “exciting” objective was to try and save his friends by locating a missing backpack.
5 Reptyl (Silver Surfer)
Reptyl was another obscure character featuring in a Marvel game for the NES. He appeared in the only game to date based on/starring the Silver Surfer. He was the first boss fight in the game, sticking close to his comic book origins as a space pirate.
The game follows the Silver Surfer as he pilots his board across the universe. His aim is to defeat a loose cabal of intergalactic despots. One of these is, unexplainably, the mystical demon Mephisto, and another alludes to be a very loose version of the X-Men villain Mr. Sinister. Silver Surfer was met with largely negative reviews, though it has received praise for its surprisingly excellent soundtrack.
4 Siena Blaze (X-Men: Gamesmaster’s Legacy)
Siena Blaze has an obscure Marvel history. She appeared as a villainous member of The Upstarts in the X-Men comics. Later, she would be absorbed into the short-lived Ultraverse by Malibu comics, where she would become a hero.
X-Men: Gamesmasters Legacy for the Game Gear was the second X-Men game for Sega’s underrated handheld console. As Siena Blaze was linked to the villain Gamesmaster him in the comics, she was given a brief moment in the spotlight as a video game boss before her Marvel career would come to an end.
3 Piecemeal (The Incredible Hulk: The Pantheon Saga)
The Incredible Hulk: The Pantheon Saga is a game for PlayStation, Sega Saturn, and MS-DOS. In it, Hulk starts off battling the Pantheon team of heroes. As much of the plot was taken from early-’90s Hulk comics, it allowed the inclusion of villains from the era.
One of these was Piecemeal, a short-lived shape changer who was a pawn of the Red Skull. Piecemeal had taken on the Juggernaut and Hulk, so it may have seemed logical to put him against a powerful hero. In hindsight, he does not hold up against classic villains like the Maestro and the U-Foes, who all feature in the game as well.
2 Sumo (X-Men: Mutant Academy 2)
X-Men: Mutant Academy 2 for the PlayStation was one in a line of critically appraised fighting games featuring Marvel’s mutants. This game featured 3D models restricted to a 2D plane. It had an outstanding roster of both heroes and villains from the X-Men universe. It was a huge improvement from its first version, which was somewhat slow and lackluster.
All of this makes the hidden cameo character somewhat underwhelming. With such a huge roster of beloved characters to choose from, it was Sumo who made an appearance. A short-lived member of the Mutant Liberation Front, Sumo was shot dead almost as soon as he appeared in the X-Men series.
1 Shuma Gorath (Marvel Vs. Capcom, et al)
For such an obscure property, Shuma Gorath has had a number of appearances in video games. Primarily an adversary of Doctor Strange, he often appears in games created by Capcom. His first appearance was in Marvel Super Heroes, the 1997 fighting game for arcades that later came to PlayStation and Saturn.
Since then he often crops up whenever a Marvel Vs Capcom feud starts. A floating tentacled blob with one eye does not seem like he would put up much of a good fight. He has however been in five games to date, one of which included a Doctor Strange virtual pinball game.
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