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Spider-Man 2 - PSP - Preview

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Posted by: jkdmedia

The Amazing Spider-man, as he was so called in some of the first comic books published by Marvel, has had a terrific life in videogames of late, thanks in a large part to Activision and Digital Eclipse.

Peter Parker has come a long way, from improved combat to free-roaming web slinging throughout Manhattan, but the Web-head is about to conquer new ground – the PSP. 

Activision held a preview day in Santa Monica Wednesday for the PSP version of Spider-man 2, which is based off the movie, but with enough wrinkles and new features to make any Spidey fan sit up and take notice.

In one word: “Wow!”

GameZone was invited along for the ride and the opportunity to get some hands-on time with this version, and discovered a version that boasted a remarkably blend of the first two movie games.

The game is not an on open-ended tale, nor does it allow for multi-player gaming. This is entirely a single-person experience, with upgrades allowed but only if you accrue hero points in a consistent manner. This means varying your attack combinations.  

“We brought in the punch-kick system from Spider-man 1,” stated Activision Juan Valdes, “and the web system from Spidey 2.” The PSP version is a “mix and matching the best fit from both movie games.” 

The game also has destructible elements in the environment, with three difficulty levels that increase the rewards depending on which difficulty setting you are at, and 19 levels of gameplay – in addition to the eight of so training levels. An additional 12 minutes of CGI cutscenes have teen added to enhance the storyline. In addition to the voices of Toby Maguire and Alfred Molina (who have done some additional voice work for this title), the game also adds – for the first time in the game series – the voice of J.K. Simmons, known in the movies for his portrayal of J. Jonah Jameson.

Of course, Spidey comes equipped with a full arsenal of web tricks, and you will learn them as you move through the training missions, but some don’t work all the time. You might get away with hopping on the shoulders of Rhino once, but he grows wise to you in subsequent levels and you can’t pull that off. In this regard, with somewhat evolving AI, the game struts its stuff with remarkable and challenging gameplay.

The sound is superb and the graphics are simply stunning. The animation is smooth and the textures are jaw dropping, eye-popping goodness. There is one scene where Spidey is in Mysterio’s castle and he must work through the corridors, which are trap-laden, to trigger the releases for huge steel gates. The pedestal that has the trigger is bathed in a blue light from the stained-glass window behind it. Dynamic lighting and shadows, with depth, never looked so sweet. 

The control system has been very well configured to work with the two shoulder triggers, as opposed to the four on the PS2 controller.  

Oh, and the load screens are designed specifically for the PSP and look terrific, as far as load screens go. 

Spider-man 2 will be available at launch on the PSP, and is easily a game that will demonstrate the power of the machine. If you are a fan of the Web-head, you will want this game. If you are a fan of action games, in general, you will want to make this game a part of your collection.  

It is simply amazing.

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