The Amazing Spider-Man Mobile Game: Shaky Start to a Bright Future
There are plenty of limitations to the hardware of a mobile device, and this is clearly evident when it comes to open world games. With a game like The Amazing Spider-Man which allows you to swing, crawl, and leap your way across a massive landscape, there is only so much of “massive” that can be delivered. Still, this game is a great start for a whole new series of open world adventures for our radioactive-spider bitten photographer, add in the fact that the movie tie-in means that we get the whole Gwen Stacy storyline and this is something that die hard Spider-Man fans should never miss out on.
The Web Slinger, Literally
Moving around the game is pretty easy -in terms of learning how to do the basic web swing. As for actually doing complex maneuvers, it gets a little complicated since the camera tends to position itself automatically at the worst possible angle you can have. It takes a bit of practice if you plan on swinging around and performing a hundred feet drop on a target -but it can be done (just expect a lot of frustration from the touch screen controls). Anyway, we really appreciate that the game makes plenty of use of Spidey’s web shooters. While they are not a super-power and just a gadget Peter created, they are as much a part of his character as his ability to wall crawl is.
Combat with the web shooters also gets wonderfully creative -if not a bit tedious as some moves are simply so spammable. Still, beating up the low-detail thugs and henchmen makes for a good change of pace from web swinging around the city.
The big catch about mobile devices is that they have only so much processing power. Even if you cut down on all the textures and details, there can only be so many actively moving objects on the screen at any given time. The fact that the game relies on a lot of on-the-fly loading for draw-ins means that the hardware is already being stretched. It is easy to say that this game could very well be a little too ambitious for its’ time, but we still appreciate the developers for trying anyway.
One of the things we would have preferred is that the developers should have scaled down the city. Sure, it is not that big to begin with, but it really does feel void of life when coming across a car on the roads is a rare occurrence. Populating a small sandlot with NPCs is always more important than having a big empty lot.
Aside from the slightly underwhelming city, the combat mechanics do need a bit of work. The moves are particularly not fun -sure, the choreography for the Web Head’s combos feel dynamic and strong but there are only so much you can do. Upgrading does add a few extra moves to the repertoire but you are better off allocating the points to passive features such as the base stats. Continue Reading
Release Date: 28/06/2012
Better Keep It Quiet
The game has some voice acting in it, which is not as good as we had hoped. The script for Spider-Man’s snappy comments feels a like it has been watered down or even rehashed from old content. And if that was not disappointing enough, the delivery itself is lackluster. It would have been better if the dialogue was just onscreen instead of recorded. And if Spidey’s voice was already off, the rest of the cast has it even worse.
The music on the other hand is a series of not so memorable ditties that at least do not distract from the game. We do love the “THWIP” sounds that the web shooters make, and the collision sounds during combat do help with the overall atmosphere of the game.
Core gamers will notice that a lot of the story is delivered GTA style, with the player proceeding to certain locations of the game to trigger events. It worked for the old Spider-Man 2 game for the consoles and it works here too. While things are not as seamless and as polished as they can be, there is also the undeniable fact that this game has the making of what might be a great portable Spider-Man experience.
Obviously, any improvements in the next game will still be hampered by the limitations of the mobile device, but that could very well change once a new generation of mobile hardware comes out. And until that time comes, games like The Amazing Spider-Man will just have to keep us busy enough.
We give The Amazing Spiderman a score of:
The Amazing Spider Man is developed by Gameloft.