Have you ever been playing a game and got a flashback of another game while playing it? of course you have or else you wouldn't be here. What came to me while playing Lego: Batman? the brawler genre of games, remember those magical games that kept your attention at the arcade when you weren't playing sports/fighting games? the original co-op experience. It's been said on the bombcast quite a number of times that the brawler genre is dead, I disagree. The brawler isn't dead it, like many genres through the years, it has evolved.
During the "cartridge/arcade boom" days the brawler was simply side scrolling action games that used fists and melee weapons instead of guns. Over the years the brawler has undergone a evolution, gone were the moving 2d backgrounds and in it's place were fully rendered 3d plane worlds that could be interacted with but for some reason, for some people these games are no longer a brawler but I say yes they are. Take the game that spark this debate Lego: Batman most of the gaming community would call it an action game, but playing through it I got the same feeling that I remembered having when I playing another batman game from the early 90's, The Adventures of Batman & Robin, another brawler and one of the half decent superhero games that came out during the genesis/SNES era of gaming. The same kind of gameplay, the same fisticuff action, the same one two-punch of batman & robin and the same kinda-hard boss fights, the difference? one is 2d brawler and the other 3d action/platformer, now granted there are some big differences. The Lego Batman game has the extra added elements of Lego Universe and the encouragement of replaying the game but really other than that I consider Lego: Batman is a new age brawler.
So is the brawler genre(or sub genre of action) of games dead or missing.....I say no but that's just my opinion...