Review by CKallander

"Where was my spider-sense when I bought this game?"

Before you read this I must say I was very let down and miss-lead about this game. Everyone said it would be great, guess I better rent first from now on.

Graphics(8)- this, in my opinion, is the games strong point. Spider-Man himself looks pretty decent, and so do the nicely detailed environments. Bosses look respectable and particle affects give the game some flair. However, the frame rate can take a few hits during aerial combat situations, but it doesn't detract enough from the game play to be any real problem. The common thug could have used a few more polygons, and a little variety would have boosted this score. All the thugs look like twins. Still, you can't complain the visuals aren't bad but could have been better.

Audio(6)- even though Treyarch actually got Tobey Maguire to do the voice for Spider-Man, it didn't come off so well. It sounds as if he'd rather be beating him-self to death than doing the voice-overs. The in game cut sequences also detract from the sound. Sometimes when Spider-Man and an enemy are talking one will start to talk right over the other. Other character lines sound forced like it's an episode of Dragonballz or something. Most of the sound effects are substandard and the level sound-tracks defiantly could have used some work.

Control(8)- overall the controls get the job done. Controlling Spider-Man may sound hard but Treyarch really pulled it off well. You have two control schemes to work with. The first is for beginners and the second for pros. During boss fights you can lock the camera on your main target. In this mode you wont lose sight of the culprit, but you won't necessarily be able to see yourself very well either. But you can't complain once you really start to get a feel for it. You'll be web-slinging in no time.

Gameplay(5)- when I first started playing this game I was overly content with just web-slinging, let alone all the other features available. After a few levels, bosses, and training I realized this was just like playing the old Spider-Man games, except with fewer extras. There’s hardly any extra costumes worth unlocking and collecting gold spider icons was becoming tedious and boring. There is no two player and once you beat the game you don’t really feel compelled to play the story mode over again. One of the most difficult things to coop with throughout this game is its camera. Treyarch has thrown in many quick fixes to make it seem like the camera is easily corrected when you don’t like what your seeing, but more often than not a few seconds later you’ll be right back where you started. The number one reason why I died so many times to petty thugs was because I couldn’t see where they were. The camera lock is good for boss fights, but that’s it. When your pinned against five or six thugs you won’t just beat them up like you should be able too, you’ll have to plan your moves very wisely to avoid certain death. Another disappointing limit (for lack of a better word) is the height meter. It wasn’t bad enough that you can’t interact with the city at all, but if you swing too low, even by accident, you suddenly fall…and that’ll be it and you’ll have to restart that level. Save points would have tremendously helped this game. Actually beating a whole level on the first try is near impossible, depending on the difficulty setting. And another thing, you’d think that with your awesome strength you’d be able to annihilate any and ever human criminal that comes your way, but they’ll give you a run for your money, especially if they’re armed with a handgun. This game could have been a little more realistic when considering the capabilities of the actual Spider-Man. Even though the story is based on the movie, it feels pretty cheesy. CG sequences capture the essence of the story much better than the in game sequences. As you can see Spider-Man doesn’t live up to my expectations.

Replayability(7)- if you’re a diehard spidy fan than you’ll undoubtedly spend hours finding and unlocking everything possible in this game. Fortunately if your not so hard-core there are plenty of good old fashion cheats. One thing that does redeem this section quite a bit is…..SPOILER…..the alternate story mode. You can become the Green Goblin and complete the story mode again with new dialogue, weapons, and all. This greatly increases the replay value of Spider-Man and spidy fans will go crazy over actually being able to play as the Green Goblin. Complete with goblin weapon kit. Despite these well executed extras I still found myself bored after a few more hours. If you’re a big spidy fan and the aforementioned spoiler hasn’t scared you away than you’re probably jumping out of your seat to play this game. Don’t give your hopes up like I did and blow 50 bucks on a few good hours. Defiantly rent for those of you who are unsure after reading this weather it’ll be worth it. Of course for you web-heads, you all probably already have the game and am pissed at me and this review. Well it’s just my opinion so good luck deciding.

Reviewer's Rating:   3.0 - Fair

Originally Posted: 04/26/02, Updated 04/26/02

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