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Spider-Man: Web Of Shadows Review - Xbox 360
Without even a Spiderman movie in sight, comes Activision's forth spiderman console game - Web of Shadows. Well, okay, Spiderman 4 is set for release in late 2009, but that is a way off. The last three games have been relatively well received on the Xbox, a relative rarity amongst Super-hero games, especially ones with any movie tie-in aspect. With Web of Shadows we have Webs, swinging through the air, and well, Peter Parker in a tight leotard.
Web of Shadows is mainly free-roaming, in which you are free to venture across the city in whichever way you wish, and complete various quests that are presented along the way. Similarities to the Grand Theft Auto cityscape are the most obvious thing when you first start playing, however that is pretty much where the familiarities end. Quests are presented along the way as the storyline progresses, either optional ones to get the most out of the game, or those required to advance the main storyline. This is usually taking out a bunch of bad guys, or chasing somebody across the city. Your main mentor at the start of the game is Cage, who will teach you the moves of the game through a number of introductory quests.
Spiderman has quite an arsenal of tricks up his sleeves as he goes about the city trying to rid the city of thugs and general bad guys. There are basic punches, and attacks to take care of enemies, but that is fairly standard fair. Spiderman can also of course opt to use his web to great effect, swinging miles in the air, as per the recent movies right up to the tops of sky-scrapers and other parts of the city. His web can also be used to entangle enemies, or pull enemies towards you from far across the screen. Of course, Spiderman isn't just confined to the ground, but can climb any building, or even fight various enemies whilst sideways. The effect of the moves is really impressive, and the best part is how everything flows so brilliantly. Nothing seems jerky or uncordinated, and the animation is excellent and very smooth.
Various combos can also be performed to quickly defeat enemies, which can be satisfying to move from multiple enemy to enemy, taking them all out in one smooth move. As you defeat baddies, Spidey picks up experience points which can be used at the end of each major section to upgrade his abilities through an ability tree. This can be special combos, extra moves, or improved abilities.
Spiderman can also interact a little with the city by picking up cars and throw them across the screen, and objects can explode and shower the screen with fun-time effect. There is nothing more satisfying than throwing a car right across the screen and taking out a bunch of bad guys as it explodes into flames.
Sections of the game allow you ... (continued next page)
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