Much like Spidey, the game reaches an all time high for Gameloft, and then it plummets into the streets. I’ll start off with the good: the map is huge. Preview here.
“Get ready for intense web-slinging action with the Amazing Spider-Man! Join Spidey in the official game app of this highly anticipated 2012 blockbuster! Play through the movie storyline as Spider-Man faces off against the Lizard and rampaging gangs.”
If there’s one thing that Gameloft got right it’s that they have a huge, open-world version of Manhattan (or more specifically Spider-Man’s Manhattan) for their game, and it’s dynamic (meaning you won’t just have regular missions, you’ll have random crimes happening on the street. And then the charm starts to wear off. The game doesn’t look very good.
Apart from the detailed Spider-Man model, everything else tends to look washed-out, and the graphic pop-in is very noticeable as you swing through the city. Framerate is hit or miss on my iPhone, although it was slightly better on my iPad. And to top it all off, Gameloft’s expected horrible voice acting hit an all time low.
Overall the controls are pretty good. As usual, you have a joystick on the side controlling his movements, and you can slide the camera around anywhere you want. Tapping the jump button makes you jump, while holding it lets you swing through the city. So now that we got that down, let’s dive into combat. When an enemy swings at you, you get a symbol over your head, and you can press the “!” button to dodge the attack and counter it.
As for the rest, it’s all about pressing those buttons and building up combos. The controls for combat work out great until you have to move, then it’s a living nightmare. I got stuck early on in the game on a mission because it involved fighting enemies, but one would always get to the person you’re protecting and run off with her. Catching up and fighting him was a pain.
I won’t go into the story for those of you that don’t want spoilers, so let’s just dive into the RPG elements. As you fight, you get experience points. You can use the skill points in five different skill trees (combat, strength and speed, web shooting, body, and bonuses). By the time you reach the end of the game, your Spidey will be way more powerful than what you started out with, but you won’t notice a spike as you upgrade your skills progressively.
There’s also a list of challenges to complete, ala Jetpack Joyride. As I mentioned above the game is dynamic, meaning you wont’ be stuck to just doing the missions. The game is free-roam and there will be crimes popping over the map. To select any mission, simply tap on them in the mini map and it will set waypoint for you to go to.
The Amazing Spider-Man is a very ambitious game for mobile devices. The swinging mechanic is very satisfying, enough to just load the game to swing around the map for a while and explore (I like getting on the big blimp). However the graphics and ground controls are mediocre. It’s not a bad game, but it’s not a great game either.