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Quck Review: Spider-Man Shattered Dimensions

12-05-2010 5,193 views Video Games 7 Comments

Before I added this game to my wishlist I had heard that - for the most part - all Spider-Man video games sucked. I'm not sure how true that is but I can say the last time I played Spider-Man on a console it had a wood finish to it. But I had heard good things about Shattered Dimensions and the concept intrigued me. The basic idea behind Shattered Dimensions is that you get to play four different versions of Spider-Man. You got your "regular" Amazing Spider-Man, your Ultimate Spider-Man, Spider-Man 2099, and the Noir Spider-Man. Each of these different versions have their own story and unique design, but gameplay wise only the Noir version is really unique. For the most part you'll be spending your time beating bad guys up when in the non-Noir worlds and playing a stealth game as the Noir Spider-Man.

The game has you hopping between dimensions hunting down pieces of some kind of magic rock. Along the way you encounter many of Spider-Man's classic villains. Now - growing up - I was a Spider-Man fan. I didn't buy many of the comics, but I'd pick up an issue from time to time. I was also a big fan of the corny cartoon growing up. Even with my probably mediocre understanding of Spider-Man's villains I find the game has an incredible line up. Even better - many of the baddies are presented in alternate versions which makes things even more interesting. Enemies like the Vulture, Hobgoblin, and the Sandman are presented very cool.

Game play wise everything works well - but swinging - at times - can be a bit confusing. I was concerned that it would be the weakest point of the game - and it probably is. But it isn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be. Once you get used to the basic concepts of traveling by web you get the hang of it. There are a few points in the game where control is frustrating but for the most part - it just works. My youngest son is playing the game currently and he's farther along than I am so I think just about anyone can pick up the game and play well.

Graphics are well done - see the screen shots below. I've commented already that I really like the design of the bosses, but the levels are also great. Audio wise there isn't much to comment on. There is no background music that I'm aware of. I can say though that the Spider-Man "chatter" is dead on perfect. Multiple times both myself and my kids laughed out loud based on some smart ass remark Spidey made. I can also say that the Deadpool level is very funny. (There is - I kid you not - a conversation about henchmen uniforms that will have you cracking up.)

Any way - this is one of those games where I did not expect to enjoy it nearly as much as I am. I definitely recommend picking it up - especially if you like the comics. (As a side question - what's the best Spider-Man comic for a person to start picking up again?)

7 Comments

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  • Craig M. Rosenblum #
    Commented on 12-06-2010 at 9:25 AM
    Hey there, friendly neighborhood web-slinger :)
  • Commented on 12-08-2010 at 4:20 PM
    I've been eager to try this one myself.

    Though I've heard the level design takes a "Point A to Point B" approach, instead of the open world, "sandbox" design of previous games. I'll probably miss that - there's nothing quite like swinging through the city of New York, just for the thrill. Even if it's only virtually. :)

    As for where to start with Spider-Man comics...; my top pick would be <a href="http://www.comicbookdb.com/title.php?ID=88"&g... Spider-Man</a>. It's a finite comic series that ran 133 issues (plus some annual specials and other odds-and-ends). The entire series has been collected in various graphic novel formats (trade paperback, hardcover, etc), so you won't have to spend lots of time trying to track down individual comic book issues. Characterization is spot-on and makes for a great, contemporary update of the Spider-Man universe.

    'Course, there's lots of other good Spider-Man reading to be had, no matter the Spider-Man you choose. :)

    <a href="http://www.comicbookdb.com/title.php?ID=1432"... 2099</a>
    <a href="http://www.comicbookdb.com/title.php?ID=21538"... Noir</a>
    <a href="http://www.comicbookdb.com/title.php?ID=348"&... Spider-Man</a>
    <a href="http://www.comicbookdb.com/title.php?ID=3102"... Adventures Spider-Man</a> (Great for kids!)
  • Commented on 12-08-2010 at 4:40 PM
    Thanks for that recommendations - but your URLs got mangled. We don't allow HTML in comments here. Can you repost w/o the HTML? Just simple links. :)
  • Commented on 12-08-2010 at 4:40 PM
    And yes - the game is VERY much A to B to C. :) I'm ok with that - but I could see a sandbox Spiderman game as being cool.
  • Commented on 12-08-2010 at 6:17 PM
    Sorry 'bout the original, HTML-laden post. My bad. :) Here's a friendlier edit:

    ----

    I've been eager to try this one myself.

    Though I've heard the level design takes a "Point A to Point B" approach, instead of the open world, "sandbox" design of previous games. I'll probably miss that - there's nothing quite like swinging through the city of New York, just for the thrill. Even if it's only virtually. :)

    As for where to start with Spider-Man comics...; my top pick would be Ultimate Spider-Man (http://www.comicbookdb.com/title.php?ID=88). It's a finite comic series that ran 133 issues (plus some annual specials and other odds-and-ends). The entire series has been collected in various graphic novel formats (trade paperback, hardcover, etc), so you won't have to spend lots of time trying to track down individual comic book issues. Characterization is spot-on and makes for a great, contemporary update of the Spider-Man universe.

    'Course, there's lots of other good Spider-Man reading to be had, no matter the Spider-Man you choose. :)

    Amazing Spider-Man: http://www.comicbookdb.com/title.php?ID=348
    Spider-Man Noir: http://www.comicbookdb.com/title.php?ID=21538
    Marvel Adventures Spider-Man (Great for kids!): http://www.comicbookdb.com/title.php?ID=3102
  • Commented on 12-08-2010 at 6:24 PM
    Ah much better - thank you!
  • Commented on 12-08-2010 at 6:33 PM
    Oh, and Spider-Man 2099. :)

    http://www.comicbookdb.com/title.php?ID=1432

    Written by Peter David, who is a popular writer amongst comics and sci-fi/fantasy fans.

    If you're looking for a good Spider-Man sandbox game, Ultimate Spider-Man (also published by Activision) is the best I've played thus far. The storyline strays from the comic, which can be a tad confusing, but it's fun otherwise. Probably more repetitive than Shattered Dimensions (you play as only two characters - Spider-Man and Venom), but yeah, just swinging around the Big Apple is plenty fun in and of itself.

    It's available for the original Xbox, but a quick Wikipedia check says it's compatible with the 360.