Marvel’s Spider-Man - Is All This Hanging Around Actually Worth Your Free Time?

Many people play super hero games because they want to feel like they are that super hero. Thankfully Insomniac Games delivers by not only making you feel like Spiderman, but as his alter-ego Peter Parker as well.

The Basics

I want to start with web swinging, because well, it’s Spiderman. Yes, web swinging works, and it’s fun. So, don’t worry folks, web swinging works in this one, it works well, and it is very much fun to do.

Moving on to combat, I will say that combat involves what you would hope combat in a Spiderman game would. There’s plain old hand to hand with some going on while you’re in the air, I mean he is Spiderman, there’s web shooting, and there’s the use of some special spidey gadgets. The trouble with combat is you will often be swarmed by enemies and when you are the camera is awful.

Sticking to combat for a second I want to say that I prefer to play stealthly in any game that allows me to, and as much as I can. I get a lot of satisfaction from sneaking around and getting things done on the down low. When you slip into the role of spider-man you’d think that you could be stealthy almost all the time. You know doing things like crawling around on walls, zipping quick from place to place, and tucking enemies up in cocoons of webbing. Sadly, that is not the case. In many of the combat events you can start stealthy, but you will be forced into a brawler combat system with timed actions and dodging of multiple goons. And this is repeated over and over again. You can almost always complete stage one of any event fully stealth, but then no matter what you become instantly visible to your enemy for the start of stage two and it becomes go time. To me, it was the only thing that got to be truly annoying.

Moving on from combat, there are a number of spidey suits you can unlock and each one comes with its own special power to help you along your journey. Thankfully, once you unlock a suit and its power, you can mix and match suits and powers however you like. So if you love one suit but love another power even more, put em together, no problem. Sadly, there weren‘t many great powers so I actually used the same one throughout most of the game.

You also have three skill trees where you can spend points as you earn them in order to up your game against your enemies. By the end of the game you should be able to fill all three trees up, but I mainly went for the Webslinger tree skills first.

In addition to your suits and your skills there are a number of gadgets at spidey’s disposal, each with their own upgrades. Again, I found I had a couple favorites and mainly stuck just to them.

There are a ton of side missions to do, and things to collect if that’s your thing, however like the goon battles, these can get repetitive. I will add though that to try and keep things fresh optional objectives are listed for many tasks so that if you complete them you will be rewarded with points to help you unlock suits or upgrades, this is kind of an encouragement to get you to play the same thing again and again differently to get those rewards, didn’t work for me.

On top of the side missions there are also puzzles scattered about. These are optional, but doing them will unlock points that will help you unlock things like upgrades. Seems like more grinding but honestly these little puzzles helped change things up a bit.

The map of the city is not available until you unlock it using radio towers. But unlike other games where you simply climb to the top of the tower and voila there’s your map section. In this game you will find a small puzzle at the tower where you need to unscramble a radio signal first. Not a huge addition but I liked the added puzzle.

The bosses were standard boss battles with patterns to learn, and the need for you to use some of your skills. An addition to the boss battles that I really liked though was that in some cases you not only needed to use a spidey skill but sometimes you needed to coordinate what your attacks were with part of your environment in order to win. It felt much more like a Spiderman situation. Brains over brawn.

On the Plus Side

  • Lots of stuff to find
  • Smooth gameplay
  • Great audio and visuals

The Negatives

  • Repetitive battles
  • Forced out of stealthy gameplay
  • Slowed down in the middle
  • Almost too many extras to use

If you are a fan of Spider-Man you will love this, if you are a super hero fan you will enjoy this, if you want a good game, this will slow down in the middle, but it is still very much worth a play through.

Was it fun?: 
If you are a fan of Spider-Man you will love this, if you are a super hero fan you will enjoy this, if you want a good game, this will slow down in the middle, but it is still very much worth a play through.