|System: Wii, X360, PS3, PC, PS2, DS, PSP||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Treyarch||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Activision||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: May 4, 2007||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
by D'Marcus Beatty
Spider-Man 3, the epic movie event, is closer than ever, and with its approach, we also have another iteration of the Spider-Man games. These games have the distinction of being some of the earliest good movie to game adaptations. Hopefully, this trend will continue with the latest game, simply entitled Spider-Man 3.
Spider-Man 3 builds upon the formula set in place by the free-roaming Spider-Man 2 game and expands upon it. Like previous games, Spider-Man will be able to web-swing around New York fighting crime in his distinctive fashion. However, the upgrade to next-gen means improvement in a number of areas. First, Spider-Man will look much better than before. The character model for Spider-Man is much more detailed this time around. In previous Spidey games, New York was stunning, especially from the aerial view that web-swinging afforded. In Spider-Man 3, New York is even larger than before with more details in the buildings and environments as well. There is also an incredible draw distance, which is both impressive and necessary for the newly enlarged scale of the game.
The main story of Spider-Man 3 follows the details of the movie, including the battles with the Harry Osborn incarnation of the Green Goblin, fights with the Sandman, and defeating the black symbiote that plans to possess young Peter Parker. There's no current mention of Venom's appearance, but since he is in the movie, he should be a safe bet for an appearance in the game. Like previous games, there are also missions that are separate from the movie missions that involve other members of Spidey's rogues gallery, like the Scorpion. This time, however, the player can choose whether or not to play the story missions or to just have fun web-swinging around NYC. However, ignoring crime for too long causes the citizens of New York's opinion of their friendly neighborhood Spider-Man to decline, so players interested in popularity should stick to regular superheroing. Treyarch also promises much more variety in the crimes Spider-Man can encounter, so no more balloon rescuing followed by purse snatching followed by saving an idiot hanging from a building ledge repetition.
Treyarch also says that the fighting engine has been redone, allowing more for the use of Spidey's webs in combat. In addition to this, there are also new aerial moves and supermoves that take advantage of Spider-Man's agility and speed. The Spidey-Sense has been changed a bit, as it is activated by the press of a shoulder button and grays the game world while highlighting the foes in red. This allows Spider-Man and the player to keep track of all potential threats in the area. In addition to that, the brief areas in the game where Spider-Man wears his black costume have Spidey showcasing more aggressive and powerful attacks, like lassoing a group of enemies when the red-suited Spider-Man would only rope one foe.
Another new addition to the gameplay is the inclusion of "cineractives," which are a type of interactive, cinematic Quick Time Event. One example comes when Spider-Man battles the new Green Goblin atop the Goblin glider. As Spidey struggles with the deluded Goblin, there are onscreen prompts telling the player what direction to press. These events are much longer and more interactive than the average QTE, creating a more dynamic experience for the player as they struggle not only to stay on the moving glider, but also to counteract Harry's attempts to throw you from his craft as well.
Although the details haven't been released yet, Treyarch promises to have some unique applications for the Wii owners utilizing their Wii-motes. It's not hard to imagine playing Spider-Man and holding the Wii-mote like a webshooter, but we'll should have the actual details soon.
Spider-Man 3 has the potential to be the best Spider-Man game yet. With Treyarch working to make everything bigger and better, gamers can probably anticipate the game just as fiercely as they're waiting for the movie to hit theaters. Look for Spider-Man 3 to swing in alongside the movie on May 4th.
CCC Co-Site Director