First a declaration. I am done shopping at Kmart for video games. Yes, you read that right, Kmart. They have had some pretty great incentive deals over the last year or so that have saved me a bunch of money on my console purchases but things are becoming more trouble then they are worth at that store. Yesterday was launch day for The Amazing Spider-Man and both of the Kmart stores near me had no copies to sell. The helpful ladies that looked to be old enough to collect Social Security did their best to assist me in searching for the game but came up with nothing but Edge of Time… no thanks!
So after much chaos I grabbed a copy at my local Best Buy, which along with a free copy of Spider-Man 2 on Blu-Ray (which includes $10 off a ticket to Amazing next week!) is not a bad deal. So on to the web crawling!
I will not go so far as to say it is amazing, hell I would not even say spectacular at this point. I will say it is the most solid Spider-Man game in years and a ton of fun. By choosing to bring the camera in on Spidey Beenox has really captured the insane web slinging and those moments perched on a ledge or antenna are just fantastic.
The Amazing Spider-Man is set shortly after the film which should have been a great thing since movie tie in games usually are horrible and give away the film before even seeing it. The problem though is the game gives away just about the most important plot developments for the movie during its intro cinematic! I will not go into details about them, but they are major. What the hell Beenox?!
Anyways, Spidey is set loose into the city to complete story line missions that advance the game along and in between is free to stop local crimes, compete in Bruce Campbell directed challenges and do some freelance photography as well. All accessible from the handy dandy Oscorp smart phone HUD. Completing these missions/challenges earn XP which go towards upgrades in the nature of longer web rush, stronger punches and fast web slinging. During the course of missions Spidey can find various items such as tech points which go towards upgrading his tech, such as stronger webs. All and all a nice incentive to seek out and complete side missions. The issue however is a majority of these side missions are just the exact same thing over and over again, and not just the mission, but the dialogue as well is repetitive. It seems to me I have stopped the same thugs from robbing the exact same women at least half a dozen times already and each time Spidey tells her to ‘stay frosty”. Car chase missions are basically the same thing over again as well… web rush to the car… plaster the window in webs and dodge the shotgun till the finish. The car chase mission looks cool but I really would have liked to have seen more variation in the missions overall.
Many comparisons have been made to Arkham City, and people have been right to do so. The Amazing Spider-Man employs a similar combat style as AC did, just not nearly as fine tuned. While in AC you could flow between striking, dodging, parrying and launching special weapon attacks… in Spider-Man you basically launch a barrage of punches then flip out of the way and toss objects at the baddies. Still a fun system.. and later a bit of variety is added by being able to grab thugs with webs and toss them around, but overall not as complete of a system.
I am not overwhelmed by The Amazing Spider-Man, but I do not regret my purchase. It has been fun thus far and knowing my gaming habits I will attempt to get everyone of those damn 700 collectible comic books out in NYC which will be more then enough value for my dollar. What I am most excited about those is the future for Spidey with Beenox. They have laid down some nice basics in this game and hopefully will only improve upon them.. much like the improvements in Arkham City from Arkham Asylum.