Fantastic 4 is a beat-'em-up based on a movie of the same name, which is in turn based on a comic book series created by Jack Kirby and Stan Lee, but it's not destined for the legendary status of its namesake. The game takes some cues from X-Men Legends in that you can quickly switch between up to four different heroes and upgrade their abilities as you battle your way through Dr. Doom's legions of robots and other monstrous foes and minibosses. Unfortunately, the game suffers from imprecise controls, a lackluster presentation, a few bugs, and other issues that make it difficult to recommend.
You'll control anywhere from one to all four of the titular heroes in each level.
In the game, you'll control four different heroes (hence the name), each of whom has unique powers and abilities. Mr. Fantastic is able to stretch and deform himself, which allows him to reach far-away objects and attack enemies from a great distance. The Invisible Woman is a relatively weak hand-to-hand fighter, but she can turn invisible and perform abilities that freeze opponents in place. The Human Torch is extremely fast and can ignite enemies, while the Thing is a large brute who can dish out tons of damage, as well as take it. All four heroes won't be available to you at all times. In most of the levels you'll be limited to only one or two characters, as the game's storyline will often depict the foursome splitting up and taking on tasks in parallel. Switching between heroes can be done quickly by tapping on the D pad in the console versions of the game, while in the PC version, each character is mapped to a key. When not under your direct control, the other characters are controlled by the AI.
Each character has three special cosmic powers that can be unleashed with double button presses, as well as combo moves that can be done by pushing the two attack buttons in different orders. Unleashing a cosmic power is quicker and easier than performing a combo, but these cost energy, which recharges slowly or can be replenished from broken items or defeated foes. If you play your cards right, you can recharge as much energy as you use, so in enemy-rich areas, it's possible to unleash one cosmic power after another, making them somewhat imbalanced. There are other interesting aspects to the fighting system, such as the ability to grapple or combo-grapple with your teammates.
Sure there are special abilities and combos, but Fantastic 4 still plays like a run-of-the-mill beat-'em-up.
However, in a practical sense there really isn't as much variety as you might think in the fighting system. Just about every character has a ranged attack, an area attack, and powerful moves for single foes. In most cases, the game is designed to reward strength over other abilities, so you'll usually use The Thing or Mr. Fantastic when they're available since they're the best melee fighters. It's also worth noting that both the cosmic powers and the combo abilities in Fantastic 4 can be upgraded using points you earn as you fight enemies and make your way through levels. Points are shared across characters.