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Kimberley Ellis
23 Nov, 2008

Spiderman: Web of Shadows Review

PS3 Review | It’s fun to swing around for a while.
As much as well all love the web slinger, you have to admit that most of his videogame outings have been dreadfully ordinary over the last few years. Let's face it, you're probably rolling your eyes right now at the craptacular state of superhero videogames in general. You wouldn't be the first. Surprisingly, while Spiderman: Web of Shadows is far from being the ultimate Spiderman videogame, it does offer many hours of wall-crawling enjoyment.

The story slots our friendly neighbourhood Spiderman into a plot which shares some similarities to that of the third Spiderman film. In this adventure, Spidey has taken to using a symbiote suit that affects his personality - much to the chargrin of longtime gal pal Mary Jane. If that wasn't enough, the return of the twisted symbiote Venom and the alien invasion that he has brought with him is sure to be enough to send a superhero packing.


Spidey is poised and ready for action.

Spidey is poised and ready for action.
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To tie in to the whole symbiote angle, the game also gives you the chance to switch on the fly between Spiderman's traditional red costume and the black symbiote suit. This allows players to access a variety of different abilities, attacks and combo's depending on which suit they are wearing, and ultimately allowing for a wealth of move combinations to be strung together as players become used to the capabilities of each suit. The suits also go a long way toward moulding the attitude of your Spiderman, thus influencing his course of actions during certain parts of the game - and influencing who he will team up with during the course of the story.

After switching up viewpoints in Spiderman: Friend or Foe, it is a welcome change to see that Spiderman has returned to an open-city sandbox universe in Web of Shadows as this free-roaming gameplay gives players more of a feeling about what life is like beneath the mask of Spiderman. The game does an excellent job of recreating Spiderman's signature acrobatic web-swinging all over the place - an aspect in itself which will keep you entertained for a while. One of the greatest strengths of the title is the refined combat model which sees some new moves added to Spiderman's repertoire - which coupled with some smooth transitional animations make for fluidly executed combat maneuvers, not to mention some butt-kicking eye candy as you watch as Spidey gracefully transitions from climbing a building to twisting in the air as he is about to lay the smackdown on a bank robbing thug that he's come across. Unfortunately, as with previous Spiderman titles, the lack of variety in Spiderman's combat maneuvers means that the action will start feeling a little repetitive after a while.


Giddy up!

Giddy up!
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This is indicative of the game as a whole. While it doesn't send you on a ridiculous quest to chase after stray balloons floating around the city, Spiderman: Web of Shadows does lay out a very simplistic quest structure which typically revolves around the following actions. Speak to character, swing from point A to point B, knock out some thugs...mission completed. Thankfully, players are able to skip the game's side-quests if they choose, bypassing the boredom of playing another same-ish mission. Though even if you just stick to the main story missions, you'll find yourself beginning to tire of the repetition about half-way through the game.

Mercifully, there are a few choice boss fights in the first half of the game which give a reason to soldier on through the repetitive monotony such as the airborne battle against the Vulture and a bout with Wolverine down a shady alley. But the fun of taking on these foes is quickly ripped away from players as you find out that you have to take on every boss in their symbiote forms, which feels like nothing more than a pitiful excuse to fight everyone twice.


Getting challenged by every Tom, Dick and super villain can get dreadfully boring.

Getting challenged by every Tom, Dick and super villain can get dreadfully boring.
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Graphically, Web of Shadows is a mixed bag, for which there is no excuse when you factor in the capabilities of the current-generation of consoles. Some aspects of the visual presentation work really well - such as the highly detailed animations of the web-crawler himself - but this is quickly quashed by the boring, sterile game world. This coupled with the abundant frame rate drops and cheesy voice acting bring down the overall quality of the title.

It's definitely not the perfect Spiderman title, but Web of Shadows is about halfway there thanks to the robust combat system and the many cool Spiderman moments that will overcome you as you play through the title. But the repetition of the missions and the many annoying graphical glitches mean that this title never realises it potential, leaving us with just another average superhero videogame.
The Score
While it isn't the ultimate Spiderman title that gamers have been clamouring for, Spiderman: Web of Shadows provides gamers with a slice of web-slinging fun.
Looking to buy this game right now? PALGN recommends www.Play-Asia.com.

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11 Comments
5 years ago
Spider-Man 3 was the best spidey game... and even that wasnt that good. How hard can it be?
5 years ago
^ I personally think the PS3/360 version is the worst one of them all.The graphics sucked and the camera was one of the most annoying ever.

I personally thought the PS2 version was better despite the hundreds of glitches.

I say if you're a big SM fan (not just because of the movies) then forget the reviews and buy the game.
5 years ago
Spidey 2 was the best, hands down.
5 years ago
Gutsman Heavy wrote
Spidey 2 was the best, hands down.
Agreed...
5 years ago
djrussell wrote
Spider-Man 3 was the best spidey game... and even that wasnt that good. How hard can it be?
You mean 2 right?

One of the worst things about the spiderman games is that Spidey always feels tiny. Not sure if they could bring the camera in and still keep the game playing well but something just bugs me about that.
5 years ago
this is the second meh reveiw ive seen for this game...definetly 1 for the spiderman fans i guess.

LUCKY I AM 1! icon_biggrin.gif i have all the rest so will get this 1...so far ultimate spiderman has been my fav mainly because it wasnt limited to story for being a movie tie in..and it looked cooler with the comic artwork graphics
5 years ago
Benza wrote
One of the worst things about the spiderman games is that Spidey always feels tiny. Not sure if they could bring the camera in and still keep the game playing well but something just bugs me about that.
That's is because it is a free roaming game in a huge area and so the camera focus on a wide area.


In Spiderman The Movie (2001) which was awesome and previous Spidey games, Spiderman and enemy characters were normal size and well detailed. That's because the games were linear and there were a lot of in door missions like warehouses and sewers.

Treyarch need to to go back to the old school awesomeness of old Spidey games by making them linear and more comic book like and get rid of the free roaming formula.
5 years ago
the old games also lasted 4 hours.

No thanks.
5 years ago
Well yeah, that's because many games of long back lasted a few hours. HELLOOOOOO!!!

Spiderman 2001 was about ten hours.
5 years ago
The Genius wrote
Well yeah, that's because many games of long back lasted a few hours. HELLOOOOOO!!!
No they didn't.
Playing Spidey on the PS1 was awesome fun but I finished it in one sitting after I hired it out.

Thats lame.
5 years ago
Gutsman Heavy wrote
Spidey 2 was the best, hands down.
I also concur... I wasted many hours trying to deliver pizzas throughout New York.

Did it use the old GTA graphics? It reminded me of it, except they simply repeated the same prints throughout the city, and you couldn't steal cars and cap people.
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  Pre-order or buy:
    PALGN recommends: www.Play-Asia.com

Australian Release Date:
  22/10/2008 (Deleted)
Publisher:
  Activision
Genre:
  Action
Year Made:
  2007

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