mikeinsc's The Amazing Spider-Man (Xbox 360) review

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Wouldn't Call it Amazing, Personally

The first Spider-Man title based on a movie since the lamentable Spider-Man 3 (*shudder*) and it's developed by Beenox, who hasn't exactly been knocking their Spider-Man games out of the park thus far. Shattered Dimensions was a good idea with meh execution and Edge of Time was openly terrible. So, with more than a little trepidation, I faced Amazing Spider-Man.

And I was not disappointed.

I'm not about to claim it is a mind-blowing affair. It is a perfectly serviceable, open-world title --- moderately similar in design to Web of Shadows though not as good.

An outbreak has hit NYC and Spider-Man and Dr. Curt "I'm Not Always the Lizard" Connors are teaming up to come up with an antidote. Oscorp experiments have gone awry and Spider-Man must fight assorted enemies from his past, such as Black Cat and Rhino. You swing around the city to reach new levels and to handle the occasional side-mission.

As with past Spider-Man games, swinging through the city is fun. Easily the best part of the game. The side missions are short and fairly tedious. Some are better than others (the Oscorp missions are more fun than the petty crime missions, for example) but none seem all that relevant to the story. They are breaks in the action, I suppose, but more of a direct tie-in to the game would be highly appreciated.

The missions themselves have the usual Beenox problem in that Spider-Man in a closed and not huge area is not a ton of fun. Spider-Man is able to handle himself and you do have retreats to get out of trouble, but Spider-Man without a wealth of movement options is just not fun. The love of air ducts comes back with a vengeance. I hope it's done to mask load times because they are just a bore and I'd rather they be cutscenes than parts where you have to hold the stick one way to go one exact direction for a while with no reason.

The combat is compared to Arkham City/Asylum, for good reason. It is the EXACT SAME combat. It's not "dumbed down" from my experience. It is identical --- which seems less-than-great since it is not original at all. It is heavy based on avoiding attacks and combos. That a common street goon can block a punch, easily, from a guy who can lift 10 tons seems odd since you'd think that a guy who can lift a car might be able to punch with some force behind it.

You face several unimaginative robots and enemies that are notable for their extreme connection to the videogame Rule of Three. Boring fights, to be honest.

The game is hurt by the same issues of the movie of Spider-Man 3. Too much crap tightly wrapped into a package, giving nothing time to develop. It is their best game recently, but it is not an amazing game. Let's be real here.

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