previews\ May 26, 2002 at 8:00 pm

Superman: Shadow of Apokolips - PS2 - Preview

E3 2002 - First LookI


Two Superman titles will be released by Infogrames, each based on two versions of Superman media, Superman: Shadow of the Apokolips for the PS2 and Superman: Man of Steel for the Xbox.   Each will be a third-person action based game but will have completely unique storylines, features, and feel. 


The first to be released, the single-player Superman: Shadow of the Apokolips, is based on the popular animated television series.  Exclusively for the Playstation 2, Superman: SOA follows Seinfeld’s favorite superhero as he once again saves the world.  Lex Luthor, Superman’s arch-nemesis, unleashes Metallo out of a high security prison in hopes that he will eliminate Superman once and for all.  Unfortunately for the bald-headed super villain, Metallo has plans of his own and turns on Luthor himself and plans to destroy the world while he’s at it.  Superman, being the good-natured dude he is, forms a temporary alliance with Luthor to rid the world of Metallo and save Metropolis. 


The game has fifteen levels, and each level has three to eight objectives to complete in order to pass the level.  Objectives range from saving civilians, to putting out fires, to smashing enemies.  Many objectives have multiple solutions and often take a little brainpower to solve, keeping things interesting. The game is non-linear, so the simultaneous multiple objectives can be done in any order.  The life of a Superhero is a busy one, after all.


Superman: SOA retains the look of the cartoon to the dime.  Right down to the exaggerated square jaw of and curly Q lock of hair hanging down his forehead, Superman looks simply splendid.  I was fortunate enough to get a sneak preview of the pre-beta version, and I was stunned.  The game looks almost exactly like the cartoon.  Each of Superman’s animations was flawless and smoother than a baby’s posterior.  What’s more, the cinematics of the movie are done in the exact same style as the game and don’t leave players wondering why the graphics of the cinematics can’t be the same as the gameplay. 


A Superman game wouldn’t be complete without all of Superman’s nifty superpowers, and they’re all here.  Heat vision and frost breath can be used in different ways and can be executed in either third-person or first-person modes.  Superman’s super strength allows him to heave barrels and lift billboards and other heavy objects with ease. 


Look for Superman later this year. 

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