Spider-Man (2002 video game)

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Spider-Man
Spider-Man-the-Movie.jpg
Developer(s)Treyarch
LTI Gray Matter (PC)[1]
Digital Eclipse (GBA)
Publisher(s)Activision
Designer(s)
  • Tomo Moriwaki
  • Akihiro Akaike
Composer(s)Michael McCuistion
EngineTreyarch NGL
Platform(s)
Release
  • NA: April 16, 2002
  • EU: June 7, 2002
Genre(s)Action-adventure
Mode(s)Single-player

Spider-Man is a 2002 action-adventure video game based on the Marvel Comics character Spider-Man, and the 2002 film of the same name.[2] In was developed by Treyarch and published by Activision, and released in 2002 for the Game Boy Advance, GameCube, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 2, and Xbox. The game expands on the film's plot, featuring scenes and villains not present in the film. Tobey Maguire and Willem Dafoe reprised their roles from the film, as Spider-Man and the Green Goblin, respectively, while Bruce Campbell, who played a wrestling ring announcer in the film, narrates the game's tutorial and bonus levels.

The game received generally positive reviews, although some criticized its length, voice acting, and camera control. It was followed by Spider-Man 2 in 2004 to promote the release of the second film, and by Spider-Man 3 in 2007 to promote the release of the third film.

Gameplay[edit]

Like the 2000 Spider-Man video game, along with Spider-Man 2: Enter Electro, Spider-Man is a level based beat 'em up video game, where the player takes on the role of the superhero Spider-Man. While most levels are indoors, there are several levels set outside, among the sky-scrapers of New York and require the player to web-sling from building to building, as falling will result in Spider-Man's instant death. Levels use a scoring system that covers more aspects, such as "Time" (clear level in a set time), "Perfect" (not take damage/not be detected) and "Style" (use as many combos as possible). Some levels have other specific aspects, such as "Secrets" (uncover a secret area), "Combat" (defeat all enemies), and "stealth" (remain undetected by enemies). Players can gain, depending on difficulty, points on completing these tasks. On easy mode, each bonus is 500 points, normal is 700, and hero is 1000 each.

The basic abilities are swinging, zipping, punching and kicking, dodging, web, camera lock, and the Web Mode in Enhanced Mode. Depending on how the player combines different buttons, it will have different results. Wall-crawling is automatic, and players are also able to lift up heavy and light objects such as cars and chairs. There are 21 different combos, which are unlocked by collecting Gold Spiders, with 4 web controls, each having a type of "upgrade" to each. The game also features stealth segments, where Spider-Man can hide in the shadows and remain undetected from the enemy. While the game is primarily in third-person, a cheat code allows players to switch to first-person view.

Completing the story mode on each difficulty unlocks different bonuses, namely alternate skins for Spider-Man: completing it on at least easy unlocks Peter Parker in his civilian outfit and Spider-Man's wrestler costume; on at least normal, Alex Ross' prototype design for the movie Spider-Man costume (which will also cause the Green Goblin to have Ross' early design during battles); and on at least hard, the Green Goblin. Unlike the others, the Goblin plays entirely different from Spider-Man, replacing his web-based abilities with gadgets, such as his signature glider, pumpkin bombs, and razor bats. If playing as the Goblin in story mode, while the levels remain unchanged, the narrative is different, and follows Harry Osborn as he becomes the Goblin after his father's death and investigates a secret plot involving Oscorp, while facing off against another Goblin, who claims to have been hired by Norman Osborn.

More playable characters can be unlocked through cheat codes, such as the Shocker and Captain George Stacy, though they serve only as alternate skins for Spider-Man and play similarly. Mary Jane Watson was initially planned to be unlockable through a code as well, but was dropped due to the perceived lesbianism implications of scenes featuring the player (playing as Mary Jane) kissing with the in-game Mary Jane.

Plot[edit]

Outcast teen genius Peter Parker develops spider-like superhuman abilities after being bitten by a genetically altered spider created by Oscorp. He learns how to use his newfound powers in the form of an optional tutorial, narrated by Bruce Campbell. Peter then decides to use his powers for personal gain and competes in a wrestling match as "Spider-Man"; however, he is cheated out of his prize money by the fight promoter. The promoter is then robbed by a thief, whom Peter lets go out of spite. Shortly after, Peter is devastated when his Uncle Ben is killed by a man, whom the police identify as the leader of the Skulls gang. Peter tracks down and defeats the murderer at a warehouse where he is hiding from the police, only to learn he is the same thief he let go earlier, who then dies afer accidentally slipping out of a window. Remembering Ben's words that "with great power comes great responsibility", Peter vows to use his powers to fight evil, and becomes the superhero Spider-Man. He also gets a job at the Daily Bugle as a photographer after selling photos of himself as Spider-Man.

Meanwhile, Oscorp CEO Norman Osborn and his scientists are investigating the appearance of this new hero. Anxious to develop his Human Performance Enhancer "Super Soldier" serum, the main goals of which are already exhibited by Spider-Man, Osborn sends robots to capture him, but Spider-Man destroys them. Later, Spider-Man witnesses the Shocker and the Vulture robbing a jewelry store and escape separately. Going after Shocker first, Spider-Man pursues him through the sewers and into a subway station, where he defeats him. Not wanting to let the Vulture get away with his share of the loot, Shocker informs Spider-Man of his hideout in an old clock tower. Spider-Man climbs the tower, but the Vulture attempts to escape. After a chase through the city, Spider-Man finally defeats Vulture on top of the Chrysler Building, and leaves him and the stolen loot for the police.

Later, Oscorp creates several spider-shaped robots to track down Spider-Man, but they pursue Scorpion instead, whom they had mistaken for the web-slinger due to him also having arachnid DNA. Peter runs into Scorpion after returning to the subway station to take photos of his battle site with Shocker, and, as Spider-Man, helps him fight off the robots pursuing him. However, an increasingly paranoid Scorpion then attacks Spider-Man, believing he is trying to take him back to the scientists who tortured and gave him his powers. Scorpion is defeated, but manages to escape.

Meanwhile, Osborn is fired from Oscorp due to failing to complete the super soldier serum in time, and decides to test it on himself, leading to the creation of a psychopathic alternate personality: the Green Goblin. Sporting an experimental armor, glider, and arsenal of weapons, he attacks the yearly Oscorp Unity Day Festival to exact revenge on those who fired him. Spider-Man rescues his crush, Mary Jane Watson, from being collateral damage, who kisses him, and defeats the Goblin. He offers Spider-Man a chance to join him, but when the hero refuses, the Goblin reveals that he has planted bombs downtown, and escapes while Spider-Man goes to disarm them.

In the Xbox version only, Osborn later hires Kraven the Hunter to capture Spider-Man. Luring him to a zoo, Kraven poisons with a lethal gas and forces him to make his way past corridors filled with traps, all the while he is hunting him. Ultimately, Spider-Man defeats Kraven and leaves him for the police, obtaining an antidote in the process.

After studying a piece of the Green Goblin's gear that fell during their fight and learning it was manufactured by Oscorp, Spider-Man decides to investigate the company's connection with the Goblin. Infiltrating the Oscorp building, he avoids detection by the security as he makes his way to the secret labs, where he discovers chemical weapons, which he neutralizes. After a fight with a giant robot, Spider-Man arrives in Osborn's office and learns that the Goblin knows about Mary Jane kissing him and most likely kidnapped her to lure Spider-Man to him. Following a narrow escape from Oscorp, Spider-Man chases the Goblin to the Queensboro Bridge, where he rescues Mary Jane and defeats the villain. The Goblin then unmasks himself as Norman and, in a final attempt on Spider-Man's life, accidentally gets impaled by his glider. Afterwards, Spider-Man and Mary Jane share a kiss, preventing him from revealing his secret identity to her. The game ends with Spider-Man breaking the fourth wall by saying "Looks like you're done now. Go outside and play."

Reception[edit]

Reception
Review scores
PublicationScore
GBAGCPCPS2Xbox
AllGame2.5/5 stars[3]N/AN/A3.5/5 stars[4]3.5/5 stars[5]
EdgeN/AN/AN/AN/A4/10[6]
EGM6.67/10[7]6.5/10[8]N/A6.33/10[9]6.5/10[10]
Eurogamer6/10[11]N/AN/AN/AN/A
Game Informer8.5/10[13]8/10[14]N/A7.75/10[15]8.25/10[16]
GamePro4.5/5 stars[17]N/AN/A4.5/5 stars[18]4.5/5 stars[19]
GameRevolutionN/AB[20]N/AC+[21]B[22]
GameSpot7.2/10[23]7.4/10[24]7.5/10[25]7.4/10[26]7.5/10[27]
GameSpyN/A76%[28]78%[29]72%[30]80%[31]
GameZone7/10[32]9.2/10[33]8.3/10[34]9/10[35]8.8/10[36]
IGN8.8/10[37]7.6/10[38]8/10[39]8.4/10[40]8.4/10[41]
Nintendo Power4.1/5[42]4.4/5[43]N/AN/AN/A
OPM (US)N/AN/AN/A4.5/5 stars[44]N/A
OXM (US)N/AN/AN/AN/A7.9/10[45]
PC Gamer (US)N/AN/A80%[46]N/AN/A
Aggregate scores
GameRankings78%[47]76%[48]75%[49]76%[50]78%[51]
MetacriticN/A77/100[52]75/100[53]76/100[54]79/100[55]

The critical reviews for the game were positive. GameRankings gave it a score of 78% for the Game Boy Advance version,[47] 76% for the GameCube version,[48] 75% for the PC version,[49] 76% for the PlayStation 2 version,[50] 78% for the Xbox version;[51] and likewise, Metacritic gave it a score of 77 out of 100 for the GameCube version,[52] 75 out of 100 for the PC version,[53] 76 out of 100 for the PlayStation 2 version,[54] and 79 out of 100 for the Xbox version.[55]

Many critics at the time considered it the best Spider-Man game. However, criticism fell on the indoor levels,[24] Tobey Maguire's voice acting[40] and bad camera, as well as the fact that it was too short and could easily be completed in 3 hours.[31] The Cincinnati Enquirer gave the game four stars out of five and stated that it was "worth climbing the walls for".[56]

By July 2006, the PlayStation 2 version of Spider-Man had sold 2.1 million copies and earned $74 million in the United States. Next Generation ranked it as the 15th highest-selling game launched for the PlayStation 2, Xbox or GameCube between January 2000 and July 2006 in that country. Combined sales of Spider-Man console games released in the 2000s reached 6 million units in the United States by July 2006.[57] The PlayStation 2 version also received a "Platinum" sales award from the Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers Association (ELSPA),[58] indicating sales of at least 300,000 copies in the United Kingdom.[59] Its GameCube and Xbox versions sold over 400,000 copies.[60] These high sales allowed the game to enter the "Best-Sellers" of each console (PlayStation 2's Greatest Hits, GameCube's Player's Choice and Xbox's Platinum Hits). It was recently promoted to "Best of Platinum Hits" on the Xbox. In the United States, its Game Boy Advance version sold 740,000 copies and earned $23 million by August 2006. During the period between January 2000 and August 2006, it was the 30th highest-selling game launched for the Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS or PlayStation Portable in that country.[61]

References[edit]

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External links[edit]