Review by wolverinefan
"An average beat em up title..."
Spider-Man 2 is a launch title for the PSP. I'm just playing it a year and a half after its release. For no real reason really except there wasn't any other PSP titles for me to rent for a few more weeks. Then I can play the remake of Ghosts and Goblins or whatever game it is and of course Locoroco. Anyway, I had heard all of the negative things about Spider-Man 2 before playing it and while it isn't the PS2 game (this is actually a port of the PC version) it really isn't that bad of a game. Yes, it's simplistic, linear and all of that but it's the same as the PS1 Spider-Man titles and everyone seemed to love those when they came out...
Spider-Man 2 tells the story of Peter Parker. A boy bit by a spider and now has some special powers. His mentor, Dr. Otto Octavious, has created some new machine, it does something or other and then stuff happens. If you've seen the movie then you know what happens. You also know that if you've seen the movie, the middle doesn't exactly have a whole lot of action. This is fixed by the game creators throwing in some classic Spidey villains to cause some problems for Spidey. Nothing amazing or new but it does fill in for the action that was missing during that part of the movie.
Graphic wise the game is kind of uninspired. The buildings look bland; the characters are kind of small and not detailed too well. I found that the indoor locations were filled with many items. Not interactive but they added a little something that keeps the game from looking too bland. The cut scenes are also kind of bad, the characters look like the actors if you squint and use your imagination. It's just that a few are really off (Poor Kirsten).
Sound wise the game is fairly average as well. The music was decent. I remember it which says more for this game than the last game I played (Star Fox Command). The voice acting may or may not be done by the real actors from the movie. It does seem close enough either way. Sound effects are kind of cheesy but fun. In Mysterio's levels the enemies sound like metal when you hit them since they are robots. Nothing original or ground breaking but the game does sound good enough.
The control took me a while to get the hang of. Square and circle or attacks, X is jump, triangle shoots a web. Swing with R2. It's all really simple but my problem came in with moving around. I tend to use the d-pad for movement. The d-pad in this game slowly moves the camera around, way too slowly I might add. The nub moves Spidey around and its fine once you get use to it if you're the type of person that uses the D-pad for movement most of the time.
Game play wise I can see why people are disappointed. This game has zero free roaming bits. It has about 20 levels. Some are very short while others are of decent size. A few take place in the air with you web slinging about. The thing is that rest of them are tight spaces and very linear. Branching paths usually lead to some keys or switches to hit to open that one blocked path. The puzzles don't change much from there. I did find myself having a problem on one level where I needed to web three broken pipes in X amount of time. The problem is I couldn't find a find to get there and I died because I ran out of time.
The enemy AI isn't terrible but it isn't the best thing ever either. They kind of just appear and you press buttons to form combos. The game is basically a beat'em up and oddly it was kind of what I was looking for. It's not a great beat'em up but I was mildly entertained. When you do combos you get points. At the end of each level you use these points to buy upgrades like more health, more strength, more webbing, new moves, the movies from the game and all kinds of other stuff. Not overly exciting but adds another layer to the game.
The game is fairly short, about 4 hours if that. As for replay value there really isn't any. You can play on a harder difficulty setting but it really isn't that much harder.
I would only recommend Spider-Man 2 for the PSP to kids around the age of ten. It's a simple and mindless game that a younger crowd can enjoy but older gamers won't like it. The game has its flaws but they don't ruin the game. I think this game gets the hate because it isn't a port of the PS2 version. I'm glad I didn't buy the game but it isn't like I paid to rent this either. If it really interests you and you think you might like it after reading some reviews then I guess you could buy it, it is remotely cheap these days.
Story - 7/10
Graphics - 7/10
Sound - 7/10
Control - 7/10
Game Play - 5/10
Replay Value - 2/10
Final Score - 6/10
Reviewer's Rating: 3.0 - Fair
Originally Posted: 09/15/06
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