Spider-Man 3 Review
Wii | Xbox 360 | PS3 | PC | PSP | DS
Spider-Man 3 box art

System: Wii, X360, PS3, PC, PS2, DS, PSP

Review Rating Legend
Dev: Vicarious Visions 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
Upper body strength required

by Matthew Walker

It has been a few years since Spider-man graced the movie theaters in a big way. The same goes for gaming consoles. Sure, Spidey appeared in the Ultimate Alliance game last year, but nothing compares to a game centered on everyone's favorite wall-crawler. In fact, the last time was the mega popular Ultimate Spider-man. Well, now we have a high profile movie and a new addition to a game series that breaks not only the comic-movie curse, but the movie-game curse as well. However, there is something special about this particular release. According to the features listed for the game, Spider-Man 3 for the Wii allows you to become the web-slinger himself. How does this work out?

Spider-Man 3 screenshot

The storyline for the game is split into a few different areas. Of course, the storyline of the movie is here, but there are also four additional storylines going on. The Lizard makes a huge splash in the sewers with a plotline thicker than what he has had in most comics concerning him lately. The storyline is accurate enough to the comics while holding that special spark that has kept the movies as interesting as they have been over the past few years. The core story centers on Pete and MJ being in love. Their love is certainly put to the test in both the game and the movie. One factor is the introduction of the Sandman, a.k.a. Flint Marko, a man that has been linked to the murder of Peter's beloved Uncle Ben. One villain would have been enough to torment the young couple's lives together, but there is another that starts to cause trouble for the emotionally torn Peter Parker. In fact, the storylines of the Wii version are identical to the PS2 version of the game. However, this might be a bad thing.

Even though the storylines are the same as the PS2 version of the game, you could have expected more from the Wii version. What I mean by this is not only are the stories the same, but so are the graphics. This is a huge disappointment. Not in the sense that it takes away from the game, but rather that the Wii is the newest of the new systems; I felt that there should have been more. Several of the scenes and environments of the game were too dark and seemed a bit choppy at moments. While Spidey himself looked okay, it was the movements of the enemies and the lack of detail to the environments that may throw you off at times. However, there is a highlight - the common enemies are not as high on the clone factor as previous installments.

Spider-Man 3 screenshot

This brings me to the gameplay of the Wii version, which is probably what most are concerned about. When info on the Wii version was released, it sounded like a dream come true. I mean, what could not be great about the gameplay, right? After all, you have the Wii-mote, one of the most innovative controllers available on a console system. Add that to everyone's favorite arachnid and you have got yourself the potential of allowing fans of Spidey to live out their dreams. Regrettably, the novelty of being able to swing through the cityscape with just a flick of your wrist is just that - a novelty. This is not to say that the controls do not achieve what they set out to do, instead, it is to say that occasional slip-ups can lead to ample frustration. Most of this comes from the fighting system though. The mechanics of the fighting are not as spot on as they have been in other Wii games. For instance, too often when you are unleashing brutal combos, you will swing your Wii-mote accordingly, but when you are on your fifth swing, Spidey is only on his second or third. Granted, this can quickly become a cardio workout for you, but the misstep in the sensor can really shorten the amount of time you play. While swinging through the city is easy enough to catch onto, it is also plagued with the questionable sensory reaction that hinders the fighting system. Swinging problems occur occasionally, instead of a constant repeat. Despite the minuscule errors while soaring through the city's skyline, web slinging is the strongest appeal in the Wii version of the game.

Spider-Man 3 screenshot

Screenshots / Images
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