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What started out as the search for a killer very quickly becomes something so much more. In a unique story alongside the events of the second film, Spider-Man discovers he’s not the only one tracking down Manhattan’s criminals. The underworld has been turned upside down with a one man campaign of violence and murder that is has captured the city in an iron grip of fear. Villains from the film as well as fan-favorite, classic Marvel characters are woven together in a twisted web of adrenaline-fueled, freeroaming, web-slinging action that puts players on a collision course with an evil far beyond Spider-Man’s reckoning.
Based on Marc Webb’s movie adaptation and sequel to the first film, “The Amazing Spider-Man 2” returns and jumps back into the video game world where players can play as everyone’s popular hero, Spider-Man, and fight crime in New York. Made by the same and previous company Activision and developed by Beenox (the same company who did the Amazing Spider-Man, Spider-Man: Edge of Time and Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions), The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is a game where they can control this young hero and explore New York and utilize his techniques in order to stop crime and fight off against popular villains. In this review, I will explain and give feedback on this game in my perspective. As much I am a Spider-Man fan and he is my favorite hero, I will do my best to remain objective.
Before I continue on, I need to explain some things to you. First, even though this game is based on the movie doesn’t mean it will follow exactly like the movie. Instead, the game borrows some of the plot from the movie and adds in this game but it’s not the central storyline. Second, the game version adds a new, original story plot which includes characters not present from the original movie, usually this includes the villains like Kraven the Hunter, Wilson Fisk/The Kingpin, and Carnage. Lastly, some of the characters from the original film are either left out or replaced for the sake of the new story. So as I continue on this review, I can’t really say this video game will spoil the movie. The game feels more like a Spider-Man game trying to be an original game instead of a movie adaptation. As you read this review, you will understand.
Story – Based on the movie… sort of… not really?
The story of the game takes place months after the events of the first story. Spider-Man is on the quest to find the man that murdered his Uncle Ben. As he finally gets close to finding the killer, he finds out that Uncle Ben’s Killer was killed by someone else that goes by the name “the Carnage Killer.” With this shocking turn of event, not only Spider-Man has to find this killer, but he also has to deal with the crime war with New York thugs and the Russians, and trying to prove everyone in New York that he’s more of hero than a menacing vigilante.
Much of my surprise, I thought it was quite interesting to see how the creators used some of the aspects from the movie and create a new original story. One of the benefits of this new story is that this game won’t be a major spoiler to the actual movie. If you have seen the movie first, you will see how the game’s ending is different than the movie. Even with the ending, as you play through the game, the story won’t exactly follow the movie and decides to be its own story. This is where it can also be a negative to the game.
Mentioned earlier, even though this game is based on the movie, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 tries to be it’s own game and tell a different story in which includes a vast variety of characters not concerning the film. Even though I have to give them credit for originality but having this story under the same name as the movie can cause issues, and made lead to disappointment or confusions. In short, if you haven’t seen the movie, you can still play this game without being spoiled entirely.
Characters – Spider-Man x Black Cat?
Remember what I said about some of the characters are removed from the original story? Well, this game takes some and adds some. For example, Gwen Stacy, Spider-Man’s first girlfriend in the Marvel universe and comics, is removed from the story. She’s mentioned once in the game but you don’t interact with her. Instead, the only female character you encounter and flirts with you is the cat burglar Black Cat/Felicia Hardy. Other characters are included to the story and expands the game’s plot. Players will also meet Marvel creator Stan Lee! Stan Lee, in the game, owns a comic book store and this where you can look at comics, figures and even play a survival minigame. Also included are fan-favorite Spider-Man’s enemies like previously mentioned, Kraven the Hunter, Carnage and much more. Movie villains like Electro is also here but he’s not part of the main story compared to the movie. Pretty much in each chapter you go through will lead to a new villain.
With these additional characters, it starts to feel like it’s not really based on the movie.
(fun fact: even though Peter Parker/Spider-Man is based on the Andrew Garfield, the voice provided is done by Sam Riegel. The same voice actor who did Mephisto Pheles from Blue Exorcist, Donatello from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003), and Baki from Naruto)
Combat – Attack, Attack, Dodge, Web … repeat… insert witty comments
The combat system resembles something from the Batman Arkham games but in a way, it feels simplified. Reason being is because unlike Batman where players can create their own combos by timing each attacks, counters and gadgets, Spider-Man is only left with attacking, webbing and evasive attacks. The majority of the fights, especially if you are fighting against weaker enemies, can be done by pressing the attack button and countering. Not to mention, Spider-Man can’t help make every comment while fighting and just swinging around. The game also makes him repeat stuff that is already said and it can be annoying to some players. Watch my gameplay and see what I mean:
The boss battles in the game suffers from repetition; if you can find the boss’ fighting patterns, you can easily beat them! Here is a gameplay recording of myself fighting against Kraven and Shocker:
You get the picture. I don’t have it recorded but I recently played the Shocker boss in hard more and he was still easy to defeat. Once you get scenes where you have to smash the square button, you begin to realize how pointless it is doing this especially when you know you won.
Graphics – PS3 graphics on the PS4?
I got this game the days after Christmas for my new PS4. As a long time fan of Spider-Man, I had to get this game. While playing, I did notice something fishy about this game. Besides Spider-Man and his costume look amazing, the rest of the characters, like the civilians and side characters, in the game looks outdated. It felt like I was playing a PS3 game instead of Ps4. I am assuming the companies didn’t invest their time on everyone else and just focused on Web Head.
Hero System – The Hero New York deserves, but not the one it needs right now?
Added to this game is the hero/menace system in where Spider-Man must fulfill his hero duties and protect New York from crime and rescue the innocent people. If the player doesn’t do their heroic acts, the meter system will fall and the media will think Spider-Man will be a menace to society. Once this happens, the city’s elite protection agency the Taskforce will show up and pick on Spider-Man. They will send in drones to attack him or send out electric walls that will try to prevent the player from swinging through the streets. To prevent these nuisance, the player must do side missions like saving people from fires or helping officers against gang wars.
This system was fun at first because it makes you feel like you are responsible for the people but after playing through this game, it can be really annoying. You have to make sure you keep up with duties otherwise enemies will try to kill you while free roaming. Being a hero is not as fun because of the responsibilities.
Conclusion – Is this game “Amazing”?
With all this said, is this game worth the money? It depends. I like Spider-Man and I am willing to tolerate the flaws this game has. I enjoyed playing with the costumes and it was fun swing through New York. The main complaint is that the fights are usually easy and the combat feels simple. Not to mention, if the game is based on the film, it should at least try to stick with the film’s plot instead of being a random story filled with fan favorite villains. It’s an original story or movie based game. Let’s wait and see Insominac’s version of the upcoming Spider-Man PS4 game.
Anyway, that’s the end of my review. I hope you enjoyed it and if you like my videos, share, comment, and subscribe. What do you think of the game? Did I miss something? Comment down below.