“It really makes you feel like spiderman’s wife’s black son”
Newsflash webheads I hate it haha.
I dunno, I couldn’t get hyped for this one honestly, for a couple of reasons. Number one being it just looked like a milk toast Arkham copy and I haven’t liked an Arkham game since the first one so that lets you know where I’m at on that one. I mean I stopped playing origins after the first couple of missions because it was just tedious and predictable. Just a slog with room after room of the same uninspired combat and stealth mechanics.
The other reason was the studio behind this game have made nothing of note. The closest thing to spiderman they made was Sunset Overdrive, the most generic nothing game you could ever imagine. Kinda like crackdown and infamous for hipsters, trying for the comedy of gta or bully and just being a pointless game packed with filler. Another game I just didn’t feel like playing anymore after a couple of hours. I think they made a spyro game and some ratchet clank titles, in human speak that means games not many people give a shit about.
So those were the first red flags that I shouldn’t be hyped about this, the last one being there hasn’t been a decent entry in the spiderman videogame subset since spiderman 2 on the fucking gamecube. Every sequel botched or rushed for purpose of grabbing cash and running. Milking a popular franchise and then spending the profits in an non-extradition country.
And this game is no different folks, it just had a better pr team, i.e you idiots on the riding high on the hype train, moving too fast to see the forest for the trees.
So this game was more of a curiosity purchase if anything. I started off really enjoying. It looks great, it feels cinematic and quite immersive. The combat is really nice and the movement is pretty good.
It starts off with an older Peter Parker, skipping the origin story and getting straight into capturing Kingpin in the tutorial of the game but inadvertently creating a power vacuum that then triggers other villains to appear somehow. Yeah the kingpin thing is kind of just bullshit to have a boss battle at the start, it never really comes up again in any significant way.
So you have a pretty standard boss battle, dodge, web, zip to, punch a lot, rinse and repeat and get used to that because that’s basically every boss fight in this game, only the costumes change haha.
Then you get into Peter Parker’s life. When I first heard that there are segments you play as Peter I was like “Huh?”. But then I started to think this game would be more like an rpg where you play spiderman and you have to balance his normal life and his spidey stuff add to that an upgrade system and new costumes to unlock you have what is essentially an rpg.
But here’s where I was dead wrong since all you do as Peter Parker is walk around and look and use detective vision to find the next thing to interact with to move the plot. And if you’re not doing that you’re working for Otto Octavius in his lab doing shitty puzzles the game knows are shitty and gives you the option to skip entirely in between Otto dropping hints that he’s going to turn into doctor octopus at some point in the near future.
It just becomes a point and click adventure. You can’t walk the streets or like have special places to change into your costumes. It’s basically just a cutscene where you can walk around, in other words, totally pointless filler. And you’re strap yourself in because you’re gonna get a lot of that in this game, but I’ll save that for later haha.
Now the first issue with this game is the core mechanics, people dumping on it for copying Arkham or whatever. I’ve said before I don’t mind if games/movies/books borrow elements from other sources as long as they do them justice and add their own flare. Look at Shadow of Mordor, pretty much steals all Arkham’s gameplay and sprinkles in some Assassins creed but it adds it’s own skill tree and it crafts this awesome enemy hierarchy system. In which the orcs have their own politics you can manipulate and it’s a really fun mechanic.
Whereas spidey has the elements of a perfect spiderman game but then piles on a shit ton of other mechanics from other games implemented in the most half assed and stupid ways that just bog an otherwise decent game down.
For example the upgrade system is just totally useless and really only good for cosmetics. How it works is you have to get tokens to unlock new suits, suit mods and gadgets and you get tokens by grinding random crimes or looking for stupid collectables or clearing bases or completing challenges all basic shit. But the suits just look cool and have like a power that adds nothing really and I never ended up using them very. The suit mods too were pretty useless and I could see doing a playthrough without even buying a new suit or mod and just levelling the skill tree.
The suits don’t have their own stats, so the spider armour mk1 and the spider armour mk2 have the same stats but they have different powers and look different. And you change their stats with mods but newer more expensive suits have the same number of mod slots so the incentive to get them and grind for them is purely cosmetic. You’d think an armoured suit would give you more defence, no it just gives you a power that you’ll never use that gives you immunity to bullets for like ten seconds. Whoop de fucking doo.
Honestly, a game that forces you to look for collectables should be binned just for that. It’s just time wasting filler nonsense.
The first real red flag was when the game introduced ubisoft style towers. And at first I was like “erm I guess this is ok” towers you go to unlock side missions and collectable locations. They’re not hard to get to like farcry or AC because you’re spiderman so that’s ok I guess. But what’s the point in it other than just as a time wasting mechanic? Just to be like the bigger boys? It has no purpose in any game least of all a spiderman game.
And I don’t care if Peter has some kind of walk down memory lane when he picks up another collectible. One was a recipe for dumplings or curry or something, I don’t want to collect little pieces of “lore” someone at insomniac pulled out of their ass as filler ok. It’s just dumb.
The next red flag was the web swinging, something that’s core to any spiderman game, so if you fuck that up you’ve got a problem. At first I thought it was ok, it wasn’t webbing to the sky it looked over it felt intuitive but then I started to notice that I could never seem to get any faster, I could never build up momentum in a swing no matter how hard or deep I took the swing. And I also noticed how the web always shot out of the screen and you could mysteriously web swing on trees in central park. Not that I was complaining because its better than running through central park.
But that’s when I realised that the reason you can’t pick up speed is because the game doesn’t have a momentum system, or anyway to web swing faster. It’s just a stock animation repeated a couple of times, you’re just on a loop and the webs are sticking to the sky they’re just angled to make you think they’re webbing buildings or they have specific anchor points on buildings. So you never get the real sense that you’re web swinging or going fast and there’s no tension because you can jump off the highest building in this game and nothing happens, you can’t die from falling. So that’s spiderman simulator out of the way. I don’t feel like spiderman I feel like someone playing a spiderman videogame.
No to shred the basic gameplay, another thing they steal and fuck up is base assaults. So in like Assassins creed there are enemy strongholds you can infiltrate and conquer through stealthily taking everyone out or just barging in and killing everyone. And each one is a fun little mini map, a play ground. But how spiderman fucks it up is all of them are pretty much the same map and you can take them all out stealthily and then another wave of already alerted enemies shows up as one of like five waves you have to fight through making the stealth completely pointless. And why do they do this? Filler, it’s just padding, adding waves is just a way to artificially pad these base missions out and thus makes them a tedious slog that I skipped entirely. And this kind of thing happens in the main quests too, you complete a stealth section only to have more enemies burst in and you have to fight them.
I’m not saying I hate the combat system but eat icecream all day and tell me you want to do the same tomorrow. You can ruin even good thing if you have too much of it too often.
Now about the stealth, it’s bog standard arkham but as spiderman; perch and isolate and web people up rinse and repeat. Oh no two people together, distract and isolate then web them up, or just use a gadget and web them both up. It’s really simple but I enjoyed the parts of the game where it actually let you do it before ending always in the obligatory fight.
I just think it’s another one of those things, they have a stealth system only because every other game has one but they’ve implemented it in a way that makes it pointless, it’d just be quicker and easier to fight in every encounter.
Another thing I noticed is the world is really lifeless, it’s really not even a sandbox game, it’s a linear game with a really really short even with all the padding campaign with skyboxes you swing through. The world is there but you can barely interact with it in any meaningful way. I get the feeling a lot of the sub mission content was cut for dlc and the stuff us peasants are left with is just the scraps. It looks pretty but it’s just hollow and really this game is a linear game but has to pretend to be open world to be let into the big boy club.
Now I saved by biggest gripe for last, the rabbit pellet on the shit sunday. Now this I couldn’t believe when I heard it and I don’t think this was in any of the marketing I saw. For some reason the game gets the genius idea that for ‘variety’ they sprinkle in these little missions where you don’t play as spiderman. And you may ask yourself am I playing another superhero? Maybe Daredevil? Or the Punisher??? Nope you play Mary- jane and Miles Morales in these shitty forced stealth sections with instant death fail states.
And now you’re thinking ‘surely they’ll just be in submissions and side quests and they’re be really short, they won’t be in the main campaign.’
That’s where you’ll be wrong, they’re in submissions and in pretty much every mission in the main campaign and they get longer and more annoying each time.
When I first encountered this I was like ‘is this a spiderman game, or is this spiderman and pals?’ Why am I playing people that aren’t spiderman in a spiderman game?
What is the purpose of these missions? Why can’t I play as spiderman or at-least Peter Parker for these missions?
I wouldn’t have minded them if I felt they had a purpose or were fun and interesting and relevant to the plot but they’re not and the game makes some lame justification why only MJ can do it and it’s somehow beyond spiderman. Spiderman couldn’t sneak into a gang hideout and take pictures, nah that’s something only MJ could do.
It got to a point where I would buy a new suit for a story quest and then have to stare at the back of Mj’s head while she went on a tour of chest high wall inspections. And to really take the piss in this one mission you see spiderman sneaking around and taking out guards and you have to help him by throwing distraction items to isolate guards so he can pick them off. My jaw at this point was on the floor with how fucking dumb this was.
I paid fifty quid to watch spiderman do spiderman stuff as his annoying girlfriend. And then by the time you’re spiderman again you almost feel relieved like you’ve just been let out of a gulag for white privilege. The relief you get when someone stops hitting your balls with a hammer.
Is that how fun works? I’m confused, so this game thought it would be good to break up the gameplay with pointless tedious missions where you play spiderman’s mates and this is a triple a game?
On top of that you do pretty much the exact same thing as Miles Morales and his missions are even more pointless. So pointless I’ve forgotten what most of them were even about. Like one was just there because he didn’t want to wait in line. One was like he needed medicine for some random person and he had to steal it and then rhino appears and it’s meant to be scary. You’re meant to be scared of a guy dressed in a rhino suit who sounds like Colossus in the deadpool movies. It’s like ‘ooh look how deadly and powerful he is, don’t you feel scared being a powerless non-super powered human faced with this amazing enemy who can be beaten by hacking into a light to distract him and just walking behind him as he stares at it intently for like five minutes’.
And every time I completed one of these missions I was like ‘what was the point of that?’ I couldn’t understand what it added and why it couldn’t have just been a cut scene or even just a line of dialogue. Instead of playing Miles sneaking past the line he could just say “I didn’t want to wait in line blah blah blah”. The reason these missions exist is to pad out the ridiculously short campaign, that’s the purpose for almost every mechanic in the game. It’s like they crafted the main quest and it’s not awful, the characters and writing is ok and then they were like, ‘shit this is a little short, let’s just cram it with collectables and pointless side quests and forced stealth missions and crafting, that’ll fix it, people love that garbage.’
And you know what’s really sad? They’re not wrong because this money is making more money than god of war. But that’s usually what people say when defending shitty games like this ‘well it made lots of money so it must be good’. Well cancer raises a lot of money but I can’t say the juice is worth the squeeze.
This is what sony does now, they make flashy nice looking movies with a bit of gameplay and hype the shit out of people with paid reviews and get people too drunk on hype to realise how bad the game really is below all the shiny baubles. And by the time they realise the developer is already making a sequel and when that one comes out you’ll have forgotten how shitty the other one really was.
One final thing that really pissed me off, like really made me cringe is they set up Miles to be the next spiderman in this game. We’re not even two games in and they’re already planning to replace Peter Parker. So either you play Miles in the dlc which would be tolerable but I won’t play it because I already returned this game haha. Or the sequel will be playing as Miles, the ultimate sjw commie wet dream haha. And Peter will be relegated to force stealth missions where he sniffs Mjs pants.
Because you know the sjws at marvel and everywhere else is chomping at the bit to make spiderman black. They can’t do it in the movies even though they tried and made references to him as well as replacing almost every other white role in homecoming with another race. I mean they made flash thompson some geeky looking indian gay, it was just silly. When not even the jock bully can be white you’ve reached levels of diversity that shouldn’t even be possible haha.
Overall what’s really sad about this game is that it has potential, underneathe all the shit and padding there beats the heart of a half decent spiderman game that we’ll never see and that’s what makes this game especially triggering to me. Because it could have been amazing but it just isn’t, it’s painfully average and bland.
Save your money on this one. Or buy a gamecube haha.