Friday, December 14

Spider-man 2 Review

Available on: PS2, Xbox, Gamecube
Price: varies second-hand
I played on: PS2
Notes: The PC version of this game is not the same game as the console version. It’s pretty much a budget version of the full console version.

I put so many hours into this game when it first came out in 2004 and going back to it I can see why.

The worst things I have to say about Spider-man 2 are all to do with the presentation so I will start with them. The graphics look dated, not terrible but dated, draw distance is an issue when you get up high. Animations can be a bit stiff and awkward looking while people have a serious case of blurry face. Buildings also look a bit dull when you stop to look at them with simple textures. The city is too quiet and lacks a lot of background noise that you would hear in a city. Aunt May also sticks out due to having terrible voice acting which is a shame as most the voice talent here is pretty good. The soundtrack is amazing and really adds to the gameplay.

I love the plot of this game more than the film it’s based on. I know lots of people love Sam Raimi’s Spider-man 2. I honestly don’t enjoy it but oddly this game fixes most of my problems with it. In the film, Peter’s feeling stressed with trying to manage his life as Peter and his responsibility as Spider-man. He gives up being the Web-head which makes no sense. He swore to accept the responsibility that came with the power he gained as Spider-man and now he gives it up ignoring everything he learnt in the previous film. The game fixes this by having Black Cat show up and giving the Web-head a glimpse of what life could be like without Peter and for a while he enjoys it before remembering that people such as Aunt May need Peter just as much as Spider-man which makes much more sense. The pacing is also much better due to Spidey not having to relearn the same lessons he did in the previous film/game.

Combat is simple with you having a punch, webbing, dodge and slow-motion abilities. While a bit clunky at times they work for the most part. You will be using these combat skills in random crimes around the city as well as the main story missions. Smaller crime happens dynamically but larger things like shootouts can be started by talking to civilians. I love this as Spider-man has always been the kind of hero trying to help normal people on the street and having you talk to them in order to help feels like a nice way of getting this across in gameplay.

To move around the open world you have to swing from buildings using your webbing. No building to attach your webbing to? You fall. This is amazing as after a while you will be swinging around the city just like Spidey himself. Newer games have used a similar idea to this but almost none have got it as smooth and fluid as it is here. While Web of Shadows and Marvel's Spider-man have arguably improved on what Spider-man 2 started some still hold this up as the best. Personally, I find myself enjoying Web of Shadows the most as the improved visuals and expanded move set make for a higher skill level. The downside to this is that it's not easy to learn and hard to master although doing so makes you feel amazing. Marvel's Spider-man on PS4 is great and to its credit manages to be very easy to pick up but this comes at the cost of finer control and abilities. Spider-man 2 is a mix of both of these being relatively easy to learn but offers enough variety that mastering it takes a while.

While not perfect due to a few minor glitches and presentation issues this is still overall one of the best Spider-man games. Anyone who has any interest in Spider-man needs to play this game, it’s a must play for any and all web-heads out there!

Recommendation Rating: 9 out of 10

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