The Amazing Spider-Man 2 game destined for greatness, or video game mediocrity? It seems the latter. You will start by picking a difficulty, Human, Hero, or Super Hero. We ended up playing Super Hero with no problems, which leads us to believe anything less wouldn’t have been much of a challenge.
The game relies heavily on highlighting Spider-Man’s good guy morals. Throughout the storyline you’re challenged to determine what’s right or wrong. There’s also a Menace-Hero meter that goes up or down according to how many (if any) side missions you complete. Considering there are no benefits to having a menace level (not even trophies), and it even has negative effects, it feels as if it was only added as extra incentive to finish the side missions in turn feels a bit forced. Side missions consist of saving people out of burning buildings, destroying bombs, and car chases. They may be fresh for a bit but shortly turn monotonous.
Leveling up and abilities works as you think it would (or as it has in previous games). You can purchase more abilities with your points, some do come in handy with boss battles. Spider-Man has his usual selection of old and new unlockable suits. Each suit has different strengths (ie, faster healing, longer spider-sence range, etc.) We ended up using the Cosmic, and Black suit the whole time solely because they looked cool. Each individual suit levels up separately which can be a pain if you like changing suits, and can be time-consuming for trophy hunters.
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 game destined for greatness, or video game mediocrity?
One of the most exciting things we think was the upgraded swinging mechanic. Though it’s not new (It was used in previous Spider-Man games) It’s great to see it back. Using left and right triggers, you control each arm. You can do things like slingshot yourself, run up walls, and shoot to designated points. The fighting mechanic will remind you of Arkham games but it’s not as well executed, in turn not nearly as fun. You can takedown enemies stealthily or good ole’ fashioned combos and counters.
One thing we can tip our hats to was The Amazing Spider-Man 2’s impressive roster of characters. Black Cat, Green Goblin, Kingpin, Electro, and Carnage. You do get to battle them all though none of them were too difficult; once you find their weak points and identify their preliminary attack actions it’s almost fail proof. Some of the boss battles will feel familiar to people who have played other Spider-Man games (Kingpins fight reminded us a lot of a Rhino Rampage in Spider-Man 2) so you’ll likely get the hang of them quickly.
How about the polish of the game you say? Not so good. Voice acting wasn’t up to par, and after hearing the Green Goblin grunting in our headset penetrating our ears, we couldn’t help but feel violated. They didn’t put much work into civilian NPCs either. This was the emptiest and quietest we’ve ever seen NYC. When we did find background NPCs they were usually identical or interacting with no audio track, so normally when you have an open world game there would be random talking, and people doing things… in this case it was pretty much a barren version of Manhattan. What’s the point of developing an open world if there aren’t any people to make it feel alive? It really set the tone… nobody is in here, and nobody will be playing this game in a month.
We also noticed a pretty lazy port to next-gen. It doesn’t seem like it was re-skinned at all. We saw some cool opportunities to utilize the DualShock 4 that they didn’t take, one example being audio logs. Instead of having to pause the game to hear the audio logs, it would have been nice if they played through the DS4. The gameplay felt more last-gen, or beginning life cycle current-gen than what was expected. If you do plan on playing we wouldn’t recommend buying, this is a definite rent. If you do buy don’t bother spending the extra on next-gen because it’s too unchanged to justify the price increase.