PS3 Reviews: The Amazing Spider-Man Review

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The Amazing Spider-Man Review

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Graphics:

 

7.1

Gameplay:

 

7.8

Sound:

 

7.0

Control:

 

7.7

Replay Value:

 

7.4

Overall Rating:       7.3

 

 

Online Gameplay:

Not Rated

Publisher:

Activision

Developer:

Beenox

Number Of Players:

1

Genre:

Action/Adventure

The movie hits theaters today and I’ve had time to swing around an engaging, entertaining city in the game. However, while the sandbox approach utilized in The Amazing Spider-Man is refreshing when compared to the mostly linear recent Spidey installments, I’m not quite sure Beenox is checked out on the format. It reminded me a little of LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes, in that both developers opted for a different – and potentially more immersive – style, but weren’t necessarily masters at implementing that new style.

Still, it looks pretty good and it remains mostly fun throughout. When you’re happily traversing the urban landscape, you probably won’t notice a few of the technical shortcomings, such as clipping and general blurriness. Beenox infuses this environment with enough color and panache to keep our eyes from easily locating the flaws, and that’s fine by me. On the flip side, the interior design does draw our attention to various aliasing issues and as a result, isn't as effective. There are also some surprisingly stiff animations and less-than-impressive special effects.

If you’re hoping to hear the actors from the movie, you’ll be disappointed. That being said, the developers did manage to hunt down some decent voices for the game; the lines aren’t great, but the actors say ‘em relatively well. The sound effects fall into much the same category as the visual effects (which is to say, okay or decent), and the soundtrack is unfortunately a little underwhelming. I keep thinking games like this need for more in the way of audio punch; a kick-ass score and sharp, crisp effects can enhance our enjoyment tremendously.

Manhattan lies sprawling and active, awaiting your exploration. Perhaps the very best part of The Amazing Spider-Man is the simple act of web-slinging your way from skyscraper to skyscraper, dropping from crazy heights, flirting with disaster, only to gracefully float back into the air. It’s not as abrupt as inFamous; there really is an almost artistic sweep and rhythm to such a mechanic. It has been refined over the years and in all honesty, this is just about the best it has been. The control is simple and reliable, so anyone can enjoy themselves.

And as I hinted at above, the city really is nicely designed, as it features a lot of color and external vibrancy. It only gets a tad disappointing when you shift to the indoor environments, although I did appreciate the change-up in pace. When inside, you have to be much more reserved; you have to carefully map out your progress, be wary of various traps, and essentially, have patience. I like this because it acts as a nice contrast to the high-flying antics outside. The only problem is that too many of the story-based missions take you away from that excellent city, and that gets annoying.

The other issue centers on the difficulty, although I imagine most of the target audience won’t mind. The game is obviously created with a casual audience in mind and as such, the difficulty isn’t exactly high. In many cases, it’s almost nonexistent, and too many of the mini-games just feel tacked on; they’re just not dynamic enough, and it’s easy to get bored and even a little frustrated. Then there are the load times, which seem too long, and the Twitter integration, which doesn’t work well at all. We have no need for “social media” integration, anyway, damnit. Oh well.

Now, although I’ve harped on the drawbacks and it sounds like a mediocre game, I want to emphasize one important fact: It’s unlikely that you won’t have fun. It really is. You may not have the kind of super elite, AAA, memorable, “holy crap this is unbelievable” fun that you might expect from a new Uncharted or something, but you’re not expecting that here, right? I mean, if all you want to do is swing around, beating on baddies, exploring to your heart’s content, and really feeling like a powerful super hero, this game has you covered.

It never takes itself too seriously, and they always maintain that patented Spidey humor, which isn’t too corny. There are a few really cool boss fights (among a couple mildly boring ones), and the control is rock solid. You have the option of tackling various missions by way of stealth, which I always enjoy, and the fast-paced battling rarely skips a beat. Toss in the really appealing city and you’ve got a game that is destined to satisfy fans who aren’t anticipating greatness. Plus, Web Rush – slow down time, baby! – is a wicked sweet addition.

Now, for those of you with PlayStation Move, you can give that a try as well. You put either the navigation controller or the standard Dual Shock in your left hand, and the Move wand goes in your right. With Move, you get a more accurate method of executing Web rush or firing your web shot. This is one of those instances where Move works out just fine, but it doesn’t necessarily add anything too spectacular to the core experience. Still, it’s probably worth trying, if only because you haven’t used Move since Sorcery. And you haven’t, have you?

The Amazing Spider-Man lacks some of the polish and refinement that would make it a really solid, even addicting title. We spend too much time indoors (or maybe it only seems that way because inside missions pale in comparison to most outside ones), the story is a little lame, and the difficulty is scaled back a little too much. But it’s easy to pick up and play, exploring the city never gets boring, and fans of the web-slinging hero can spend a lot of time battling, upgrading, and just soaring along. Hardly perfect but still worthwhile for some.

The Good: Vibrant, nicely designed city. Decent voiceover work. Accessible and easy to enjoy. Some genuinely funny humor. Combat is tight, simple, and rewarding. Gameplay pacing changes are appreciated.

The Bad: Not super refined from a graphical standpoint. Ho-hum soundtrack. Being inside is nowhere near as much fun as being outside. Just a little too easy and repetitive.

The Ugly: “Okay, I think I’ve done this a few times before.”

7/2/2012 Ben Dutka

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Comments (19 posts)

YashaZz
Monday, July 02, 2012 @ 10:19:42 PM
Reply

Thanks for the review Ben!

I expected as much from the game. As much as I love Spidey, don't think I'll be getting this.

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Shams
Monday, July 02, 2012 @ 11:09:02 PM

I got it last week, and I'm enjoying it a lot...despite competing and platinum'ing Prototype 2 (very similar genre-wise), which says says a lot in my mind. I would've expected to be bored by it, being more of the same with the 20 hours or so of gaming i did in the other title, but on the contrary, so far, it doesn't seem to be the case at all. And, Graphics and the rest don't seem to me nearly as flawed as other reviews are making it out to seem. Very much Arkham Asylum, not as highly detailed, albeit far more expansive environmentally. I may not agree with Ben's numerical evaluation, but the review's gist and observation points resonate with mine so far.

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YashaZz
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 12:26:55 AM

I do believe Spidey games are great in their own thing, I played most of them and never go bored (Ultimate on the PS2 was the best in my opinion). I just always wanted something a little bit more than the games offered. I'm a little bit disappointed that Batman's getting all the glory in the Arkham games.

Spider-man needs the same justice!

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WorldEndsWithMe
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 12:57:16 AM

Ultimate in HD would be great.

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main_event05
Monday, July 02, 2012 @ 11:05:11 PM
Reply

Ultimate Spiderman on the PS2 is the best Spidey game PERIOD.

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YashaZz
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 12:23:41 AM

Indeed!

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dillonthebunny
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 12:23:59 AM
Reply

imo this is the best Spidey game there has been, its no where near perfect, and not a patch on the last couple of Batman games, but I think we all settled for such a low standard in previous Spider-man games, that we tend to look through rose tinted glasses at previous installments.

this game is certainly on the right track, its a shame that once the city is cleaned up then that's that! I hope there will be some DLC that brings back unlimited crime and things to do...

I think if you like Spider-man then you could do a hell of a lot worse than this title. the industry echos Ben's score, I personally would up it to an 8 quite easily, but then I'm far more forgiving than he is.

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Beamboom
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 12:52:51 AM
Reply

I'll get this. I had a really great time in Web Of Shadows and I am of the impression that this is a better game than WoS, and that settles it for me.
I'll get it once it get past the unavoidable price drop.


Last edited by Beamboom on 7/3/2012 12:53:07 AM

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Dancemachine55
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 7:45:41 AM

Same here.

Price drop, then have fun swinging round New York.

I used to waste hours just swinging around the city in Spiderman 2 on PS2. If I can do that here for under $30, I'm sold.

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Beamboom
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 8:34:31 AM

Me too, in Web Of Shadows! Just swinging around and handling random encounters are giving me my moneys worth. :D

And this baby will drop in price before the summer is over.

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___________
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 5:48:04 AM
Reply

ill never understand why this is getting such good reviews!
the past few spidermans have had basic boring combat, little enemy variety, boring boss battles, and are extremely repetitive!
and got poor scores for it.
this is the exactly the same, and gets fantastic scores!
just goes to show how little credibility this industry has!

the combat system REALLY needs some work!
whole reason why spiderman 2 is remembered so fondly is because of its combat system!
yes it had a awesome story, great characters, non repetitive missions, great side missions, ect, ect.
but what made the game were the massive amounts of combos you could pull off, and even upgrade!
this does not have those though, the combat system is as in depth and complex as freaking enslaved!
gives the term button masher a whole new extreme!
anyone remember the move in spiderman 2 where you could tie up enemies to a traffic signal, than as they swing back and forward use them as a punching bag?
where the hell is that in this!?

sigh, back to dreaming of finally getting a spiderman 2 worthy successor!
come on spiderman is one of the best coolest characters out there!
why does he always have to do with such a basic combat system?
god i wish rocksteady or even radical entertainment would do a spiderman game!
hell even give it to gamesloft, they did a much better job with spiderman friend or foe on mobile!
god, a mobile game better than a console game what is this world coming too!?

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Beamboom
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 6:45:44 AM

*Fantastic* scores??? Hardly. It's got a meta that is currently clinging to 74!

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___________
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 10:02:42 AM

considering how meh the game is, yeah!

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dillonthebunny
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 10:31:39 AM

the combat is far better than previous games. They have dumbed down the webbing, but then I would rather cloud swing across the park then have to hop from tree to tree at grass level, lol

no anal comic mad fan is going to think its any good, but they're too hard to please anyway, even the die hard Batman fans disliked the last two games, and imo they were fantastic.

no, imo this spider-man game is good, the reviews have pretty much nailed it for the scoring, theyre not amazing scores.. but they tell you how it is, and then they say play it.

so, bottom line, if you want to play the spidey game.. this is a good one, you cant go wrong if you know what youre buying.

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___________
Wednesday, July 04, 2012 @ 10:48:41 AM

everything is too basic!
even the web slinging is so simplistic!
instead of R2 as swing and L2 to speed you up, than you have to rely on timing to have a higher swing.
now its hold R2 and the game swings for you, you dont have to do jack!
and to swing higher just hold R2 than hold L2.
everything is so simplistic you could literally get your dog to finish it for you!

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dillonthebunny
Wednesday, July 04, 2012 @ 11:52:20 AM

i kinda agree with you on the swinging, I dont hate it.. I like the fact that I dont have to think about it, so its quite nice in a way because I remember it being a pain in the arse in the other games when you were stuck somewhere and just couldn't travel, a real mood killer.
here they have removed that stunted game play, and I do like that..

BUT I agree that by taking it out we have lost control of Spidey, to land on a head of a needle, its just not possible anymore, so true exploration isn't as fine tuned as it was in previous titles. still, I think that it was a bold move to dumb it down, and I do think its paid off.. the upgrades you get are great in the game, but I have to assume that in the next game the power ups will affect your swinging, I was surprised there wasnt any of those upgrades in this game.

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Ultimate_Balla
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 8:24:13 AM
Reply

All I see here is Batman:AA. . . I'll get this eventually though..

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JDC80
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 10:22:20 AM
Reply

I brought it last week and I would give it a 8/10 the only issues I had was the camera when Spider-Man wall crawl on the ceiling in those parts of the game when has to do stealth and difficulty I don't want Ninja Gaiden Sigma 1/Devil May Cry 3 difficulty but I wouldn't mind a decent balance.

My favorite parts of the game is web swinging/Web rushing through New York and the combat. As for story I can understand it because they didn't want to fall in the movie game trap by trying not to spoil the movie but still have the movie story. Only side mission I'm getting bored with are the car chase ones.

I played pretty much every PSone to PS3 Spider-Man game and this title ranks up there with Spider-Man 2 and Ultimate Spider-Man. Trust me this game is far from prefect but if you're a Spider-Man fan you're going to have fun.

Lastly have you notice there been four games based on the Spider-Man movies and scorpion has been in 3 of them? And if you're a fan of the last TMNT tv series(2k3 4Kids) the dude that voices Spider-Man voiced Donatello in that series.

Last edited by JDC80 on 7/3/2012 10:32:45 AM

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dillonthebunny
Tuesday, July 03, 2012 @ 7:03:20 PM
Reply

just finished it, great game.. really enjoyed it. only one part of the game annoyed me, the end of chapter 10 when escaping, I wont spoil it, but that did annoy me a lil. camera angles aren't great as mentioned when your on the ceiling, but all in all.. worth the price of the game, and a great deal if you pick it up cheaper.

anyway, I have some missions to clear up and then I might start again with all the powers ive developed for NG+

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