What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this game contains a lot of cartoonish action, including some gunplay (in one instance, a super-villain is shot through the mouth). There is no swearing but sometimes the teen hero uses the language of his age group, words like "hell" and "sucks." Players will spend some time saving people as Spider-Man, but they will also play as the evil Venom, a vampire-like monster that can only live by killing innocent bystanders. Players will also be confronted with in-game advertisements from Nokia.
What's it about?
ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN follows Peter Parker and Eddie Brock, childhood friends who have been driven apart by circumstance. While Parker fights crime as Spider-Man, Brock embraces evil power in the form of Venom, an experimental super-suit that bonds with the mind and body of its wearer. On the convoluted path leading to the confrontation of hero and villain, players tackle missions as both Spidey and Venom. Along the way, they'll battle familiar foes both good and bad, including Wolverine, Green Goblin, and Silver Sable.
Is it any good?
The story and cast is sure to please any fan of the Marvel Comics universe or super-hero comics in general. The graphics are colorful and use the cell-shading technique that makes the game feel like a playable cartoon. Cut-scenes employ the panel-by-panel style of a comic book, but they are spiced up by the fact that the animated characters can jump right out of the panel.
Unfortunately, the game falters when it comes to depth of gameplay. The story missions feel a little disjointed set among the free-roaming action that dominates the game. Most gamers will be able to finish the story mode in five or six hours. There is some replay value in the numerous city missions and in finding tokens hidden around the city, but this grows old quickly -- this is better as a rental than to buy.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about the differences between playing a hero and playing a villain in video games. Is it more exciting to do bad things in a game than good things? Do games that allow bad behaviors encourage those behaviors or are they a safe outlet?