Complimenting this year’s superhero summer blockbuster, The Amazing Spider-Man swung onto our consoles at the end of June but does the web-heads latest adventure stick or is it left scrambling like a spider in a bathtub?
Gamers are notoriously sceptical about movie tie-in video games and going by the genre’s back catalogue, they have every right to be. However, Beenox, the developers behind The Amazing Spider-Man, have a glowing resume of previous titles featuring our favourite red and blue clad hero including Shattered Dimensions and Edge Of Time.
The difficulty behind releasing any Spider-Man game is that gamers will always compare it to the 2004 Treyarch developed Spider-Man 2 tie-in game, considered by the community as the pinnacle of not just Spidey games, but superhero games as a genre.
Beenox appear to be well aware of this, as The Amazing Spider-Man has managed to include and improve on many of its predecessor’s popular features in addition to incorporating other well-received mechanics from other hit titles from the past year.
Combat in The Amazing Spider-Man is incredibly familiar to any gamer who has had the pleasure of playing Rocksteady’s brilliant Batman: Arkham City, a title that was widely praised for its comprehensive free-flowing combat system. Battling the bad guys with an array of attacks looks immensely impressive whilst being incredibly intuitive and simple to perform.
The Amazing Spider-Man also marks the web-head’s return to Manhattan and an open-world that is begging to be explored. Web-swinging through the city’s concrete chasms is an exhilarating and cinematically stunning experience, enhanced by the game’s gorgeous graphics. Plummeting from the tallest skyscraper before snapping a line out before you hit the ground provides a genuine adrenaline rush.
We’ve seen fine web-swinging in Spider-Man games before, but with the addition of the Web Rush feature, the mechanic reaches near perfection. This new ability allows the player to slow down time at the push of a button and pinpoint the exact location they wish to swing to next. At the polar opposite to Web Rush, Web Retreat offers players a quick escape from danger when things get a bit hairy – zipping Spidey to safety.
In summary, Beenox have managed to re-create the many pleasures of Spider-Man 2 whilst offering something new for players to get excited about. The Amazing Spider-Man may just be the new benchmark for the franchise.