Ultimate Spider-Man (XBOX)
GI Staff / Nov 10th, 2005 No Comments
Ultimate Spider-Man is a unique game playing experience that features a completely newly created storyline behind the popular "Ultimate Spider-Man" comics, featuring his arch-rival, Venom. The title features an amazingly detailed free roaming experience inside New York City that lets gamers experience a variety of missions with a new combat system that pits you against a host of new baddies to take down. With interactive game play that features a richly designed comic book panel interface, Ultimate Spider-Man is truly an interactive comic book experience.
Play As Spider-Man Or His Arch-Nemesis Venom – Gamers get to triumph over evil as the young Spider-Man and assume the role of his arch nemesis Venom to destroy everything in their path with Ultimate Spider-Man’s two diverse types of gameplay. The combat systems allow players to defeat enemies differently, using Spider-Man’s fluid, acrobatic moves or Venom’s brute force.
Experience A Living Comic Book – With innovative 3D Comic Inking Technology, gamers experience unique animated comic book panels that move the story along through comprehensive environments and make it possible to sense danger from multiple perspectives.
Most Immersive Spider-Man Game Ever – The new combat system lets players use their surroundings to pull off acrobatic moves in the expanded free-roaming New York City environment, including the borough of Queens. Ultimate Spider-Man also features more characters from the Marvel universe than any other previous Spider-Man game.
Most Authentic Spider-Man Experience – Ultimate Spider-Man comic book makers – Brian Michael Bendis and Mark Bagley – collaborated on an all-new Spider-Man story for the game that picks up where the comic book left off.
Easily – for both PC power users (get a good graphics card people!) and for XBox players utilizing the powerful component HD ability – the graphics will be *the* best thing about Ultimate Spider-Man. Activision/Treyarch's art direction for this title is somewhat groundbreaking and wins admiration from our creative side for developing such a rich, detailed, and exciting comic book environment to roam around in. Easily, this is the game's best feature and is nothing short of amazing.
Although there is no celebrity voice acting in this title, it's done very well, along with all the sound effects for the game. The story unfolds well with the voice talent, and overall, is a positive for the game.
For those of you that love race missions (aka "Beat the Clock!") then rejoice! This is your game! For those of you that enjoy story-based missions – you'll be disappointed that there wasn't more of these well put together missions. Indeed, much of the missions in Ultimate Spider-Man are race based which make for a repetitive, unimaginative, and overall less fun experience than what we see from the story based missions. Gamers should be blown away by the amount of fun the story-based missions bring, and make us all wish the entire game had been centered around this game mission philosophy. These story missions offer fun, and the boss monster-types at the end make for a very gratifying gameplay experience. Sadly, these story based missions are too few and far between, with the mundane race missions getting most of the gameplay time.
Ultimate Spider-Man offers up a new, and much more simple combat system that gamers for PC will enjoy, and that XBox/PS2 gamers will pick up with a short learning curve. Simple combos in fighting action while "swooping" in from mission to mission is basically how things go in the title. Swinging from place to place in New York has been made easy as not to deter from the gameplay experience. The story itself of the title is another of the game's very strong strengths, completely unique and picks up where the comic books left off. All in all, the game play of Ultimate Spider-Man gives gamers some big fun in the way of story-based missions, and some very repetitive and mundane "race" missions which really take away from a well crafted storyline and amazing art direction.
ONLINE / MULTIPLAYER
The actual story based missions can be played through in less than 8 hours, and the entire game, as a whole, is somewhat short – even for Spider-Man title standards. The free roaming missions aren't tantilizing enough for gamers to really want to go out of their way to complete – another "almost hit the mark" miscue. The longevity of the game gets average marks as best, with some great story missions providing the bulk of the games fun, but with a small replayability factor.
Ultimate Spider-Man does some things in amazing fasion – the graphics are great, the storyline is imaginative and original, and the combat system is simplified and fun. These add up to make the game worthwhile. Nevertheless, the repetitive chase/timed missions and complete lack of imagination with the variety of bad-guys seriously take away from the title. It seems that gamers might be left thinking what this game could have / should have been. Despite the negative aspects of the title, it's a worthwhile play and definitely worthy to check out at the very least.
Overall, Ultimate Spider-Man has some of the best graphics that we've seen lately, with wild and imaginative colors creating a truly "ultimate" comic book gaming experience. The voice acting is very solid, and the too-few story based missions make the game completely worthwhile. If you can look beyond the timed missions (or you love them), the simplification of the city and thinly varied baddies, then this title is worth a look.