Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions

Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions Review for Xbox 360

On: Xbox 360PS3PCWiiDS

Four different takes on the Spider-Man franchise is one video game.

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7Out of 10
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Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions screenshot
Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions screenshot

Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions is a work of pure indulgence, a tapestry of silver age fanservice framed with an overly elaborate multiverse-spanning plot. The wafer-thin conceit is that you flick between four spider-men from various comic incarnations – Amazing, Ultimate, Noir and 2099 – who are working together to fight a variety of familiar villains and recover a magical (read: potentially apocalyptic) artefact, eventually culminating in a showdown with old foe Mysterio.

The game is – wait, Mysterio? This is a guy whose most significant trademark is wearing a fishbowl on his head, and his defining action was blowing his own brains out in an issue of Daredevil. How bad must things be if developer Beenox is forced to scrape the barrel so hard only Mysterio is left remaining? Sure, there's Carnage, Vulture, Deadpool, Doctor Octopus and Kraven, but Norman Osborn's stock must have taken a severe battering if he's playing second fiddle to Mysterio. Mysterio!

But in all seriousness, the game's ensemble cast only serves to prove what most fans will already know: it's the vanilla Amazing Spider-Man that's the best. His is the campaign that ties the others together, and he's the one who receives cult icon Neil Patrick Harris as a voice actor. Still, despite efforts to mix up the quartet with an aesthetic mix of the popular (Amazing, Ultimate) and niche (Noir, 2099) the actual end result, with one exception, tends to play exactly the same.

The real pearl of the game is the punning script, packed full of the one-sided bantering that's come to define the friendly neighbourhood webslinger over the decades. It manages to elicit more than a few chuckles across its duration, though does fall victim to regurgitating the same one-liners from time to time. The solid (if corny) voice acting goes down a treat, though, and Stan Lee's narration neatly fits with the tone of the game. Don't expect gritty, basically.

It also helps that developer Beenox also has a keen eye for the set-pieces. One level has you jumping between oil rigs by way of surfing a capsized boat across a tidal wave, all while being filmed as the contestant in Deadpool's 'The Pain Factor' TV show; another has you darting over splintered shards of wreckage flung out from a stage-engulfing typhoon; and one has you chasing a cannibalistic Vulture through dimmed, prohibition-era backstreets and alleys.

Beenox's decision to theme each stage around one particular rogue pays dividends, with multiple spiralling encounters proving far more rewarding to the player than simply tossing in cursory boss fights as level finales. After enough to-and-fro, each villain will activate the powers of their shard trimming – that one that will destroy the universe – which signifies the big, traditional end of level fight. It is a shame, however, that each souped-up encounter is usually just a more difficult version of former tussles.

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BLAZER's Avatar

BLAZER

this game is also on pc.though there's no open world,I am exited about playing as four different spidermen.
Posted 07:53 on 09 December 2010
SexyJams's Avatar

SexyJams

I'm buying it, from what I've heard and read it sounds right up my street.

@IndoorHeroes, I understand your point Chris, but I don't think a COD game without guns would be getting 7's and 8's. It's obv. doing something right ;)
Posted 08:44 on 15 September 2010
IndoorHeroes's Avatar

IndoorHeroes

Spider-Man's suite of powers make him ideally suited to exploration and environment traversal based gameplay. Making him button mash his way through corridor after corridor of faceless goons is pushing a square peg into a round hole in my opinion.

As I said on Twitter, making a Spider-Man game without an open world is like making a Call of Duty game without any guns.
Posted 13:52 on 14 September 2010
guyderman's Avatar

guyderman@ IndoorHeroes

Really Chris? My enthusiasm grew when I found out it wasn't open world!

I definitely want to play this, but not a full price purchase for me. On the cheap or as a rental - but I am looking forward to a good ol' romp with 4 spidey's (ooer!)
Posted 13:09 on 14 September 2010
altaranga's Avatar

altaranga

Another review from Gaston? He's so hot right now he could take a crap, wrap it in tinfoil, put a couple fish hooks on it and sell it to Queen Elizabeth as earrings.
Posted 13:06 on 14 September 2010
pblive's Avatar

pblive

Sounds good. I'll rent it though.
Posted 13:02 on 14 September 2010
IndoorHeroes's Avatar

IndoorHeroes

Great review but my enthusiasm for this game evaporated the instant I discovered it wasn't open world.
Posted 12:52 on 14 September 2010

Game Stats

Technical Specs
Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions
7
Out of 10
Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions
  • Funny script
  • Nice variety of locations
  • Control hiccups
  • Levels can drag
Agree? Disagree? Get Involved!
Release Date: 17/09/2010
Platforms: Xbox 360 , PS3 , PC , Wii , DS
Developer: Beenox
Publisher: Activision
Genre: Action
Rating: PEGI 12+
Site Rank: 13,785 157
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