Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Spiderman: Shattered Dimensions - PS3, Xbox 360, Wii, DS

Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions Review

Marvel's famous web slinger bounces back for yet another action-packed adventure in Spider-Man. Shattered Dimensions. With the developer being Beenox, the formula has been changed around a bit, which though refreshing is a slightly underwhelming experience.
The story revolves around the accidental destruction of the Tablet of Order and Chaos, a mystical artifact wtth magical power, during a battle between Spider-Man and Mysteno. Through a twist of fate, the Tablet's shattered pieces make their way into the hands of various villains across the different Marvel universe realities, causing problems across the multiple dimensions - and it's now up to each world's Spider-Man to restore the balance. Although comic scribe, Dan Slott penned down the story, it falls way short of engaging the player within the game world. The best you will get out of the experience are a few genuinely witty one-lmers before the plot wears thin.

Taking on a linear approach as opposed to most games in the series, Shattered Dimensions' main focus is placing the player in four different alternate realities - each with its own unique game style and mechanics. There is the Amazing universe, which plays like the games we are accustomed to, the Ultimate universe where Spider-Man dons a Symbiote costume to destroy enemies, the Spider-Man 2099 dimension with a more futuristic focus and delightful free-falling sections, and the 1933 Noir universe that has Spider-Man sneaking in the shadows and taking on enemies Batman-style. The change of pace is pretty favourable and brings the game a certain degree of quality. Combat is easy to get used to and works well, though a troublesome camera is irritating at times. The game's trump card is the Web of Destiny challenge available at each level, which provides a deep level of replayability by allowing players to defeat enemies, find collectibles and beat timed objectives in order to level-up with experience points These can then be spent to unlock health upgrades, extended combos, alternate costumes and other goodies.
Visually, the game environments are distinct from one another, with eel-shaded, neon-tinted and black-and-white areas punctuating the aesthetics. While it isn't anything groundbreaking, each level looks comfortable and feels just right. The voice-acting is quite good, with veteran actors, such as Neil Patrick Harris, reprising their roles as the webslinger's many incarnations. The familiar voices all sound well, and help players bond with the Spider-Man they control.
The multiple-worlds concept that Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions portrays works to a certain degree, though not the way you would expect it to. Weak storyline and technical flaws aside, the title makes for a good playthrough with some good concepts, entertaining gameplay and bonus content. If you're a die-hard fan of the superhero, be sure to websling your way to this one.

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