Tag Archives: Spider-man

PlayStation E3 2016 Press Conference Highlights

Sony is the final Press Conference of the year, and like last year they saved the best for last.  There were a few lowlights in the conference, like Skylanders inclusion, so I’ve taken the big moments from the presser and condensed them below for you.  But that’s enough blabbering by me, let’s get started!

1. Kratos is back and in a Norse setting in God of War

Sony opened the press conference with a long and impressive demo for a new God of War game, simply titled God of War.  This demo follows Kratos and a young boy whom calls Kratos his father as they hunt for a deer and are attacked by Trolls.  Kratos no longer wields the Blades of Chaos, instead opting for an axe that is imbued with an ice rune by the look of it.  No release date or window was given for this title.

2. Last Guardian is launching this October!

Finally.  It’s finally happening.  The Last Guardian is actually going to be releasing this October.  Sony dropped a two minute long trailer during the presser and revealed the game will be coming exclusively to PS4 this October 25th.

3. Horizon: Zero Dawn wows with another massive demo

Guerrilla Games showcased a brand new demo of their upcoming action adventure game Horizon with a long extended gameplay demo.  In the demo, Aloy uses her hunter’s vision to determine enemies weak points to find new parts for crafting for her weapons and gadgets.  The demo showcased branching dialogue as well, with Aloy being able to ask a scared villager different questions.  On top of all of that, we saw Aloy tame a wild beast to ride and use in her fight against a Corrupter.  Horizon: Zero Dawn comes out on February 28th.

4. Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare looks so much better than could be anticipated

When Infinity Ward announced the futuristic sci-fi setting for Infinite Warfare, they received a lot of flack.  Thankfully, this game looks like it is going to deliver as the team premiered an extended gameplay demo for the game during the Sony press conference.  During the demo, the player character Captain Reyes decided where to travel to with his crew, opting to attack an enemy frigate.  Reyes and his team took to their fighters, the Jackals, and put on an almost Ace Combat style demo.  Following that, we witness some zero-G gunfights that look so much better than I anticipated.  Infinite Warfare is coming to consoles and PC on November 4th.

5. Insomniac is making a Spider-man game!

A new Spider-man game from the creators of Ratchet and Clank and Sunset Overdrive?  I’m so in.  Sony revealed that their long time collaborators at Insomniac have taken the reins on the Webhead and will be making a game that is exclusively on PS4.  No release window was revealed, but one could guess it will be near either the July 2017 release of the film, or when it (presumably) releases on Blu Ray (Holiday 2017).

6. Sony Bend is taking us to the zombie apocalypse with Days Gone

Syphon Filter developers Sony Bend have created a new IP set in the zombie apocalypse with Days Gone.  You will play as a survivor “Deacon St. John, a Drifter and bounty hunter who rides the broken road, fighting to survive while searching for a reason to live.”  Sony Bend describes the game as an emotional tale about survivors and what makes them human.  No release window was spoken of, but below is an extended gameplay demo.

7. PS VR is coming this October with 50 games

Sony took a brief pit stop to talk about the PlayStation VR during the conference and to confirm that it will be launching this October 13th for $399.  It will have 50 games available for it, though they did not confirm how many will be there for launch.  Their defintion of games is also potentially suspect, as two of the games they showcased for it (Star Wars Battlefront: VR Mission and Batman Arkham VR) seem like tech demos rather than full games.  They did show off an internally produced game called Farpoint that did get me excited though.

8. Resident Evil 7 is real, first person, in VR, has a demo out right now, and coming out in January.

Holy crap did Capcom go big with this one.  With an absolutely terrifying trailer, Capcom revealed Resident Evil 7: Biohazard.  Capcom is taking the game into first person, with a photo-realistic art style that can also be played through fully in VR.  The game will follow the events of RE6 “taking place in modern day and revolving around a foreboding, derelict plantation mansion in rural America. Players must explore and survive the horrors within the mysterious, sprawling estate.”  Their is a demo available exclusively for PS+ owners right now on PS4, and the game will be coming to PS4, Xbox One, and PC on January 24th.

9. Hideo Kojima reveals his next game: Death Stranding

Hideo Kojima revealed himself at the press conference and showed off a trailer for his upcoming game from Kojima Productions.  What the game is actually about is anyone’s guess, but the trailer does feature a naked Norman Reedus (who is the game’s star) holding a baby fetus that transforms in black blood.  Yea, it looks absolutely bonkers, but I am completely onboard.  The game will be a PS4 exclusive, but do not expect to see this game anytime soon.

And that was the massive Sony presser for E3 2016, and I even left out the awesome Detroit Become Human trailer.  What was your favorite moment of the press conference?  How do you think their show stacked up with Microsoft or other publishers?  Let me know in the comments below!

by, Bobby Marquardt

 

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Nova, Iron Fist and Venom confirmed for Disney Infinity: Marvel Superheroes, with a Spider-man play set coming this Fall!

Disney Infinity Spider-manDisney Infinity has two more heroes and one villain confirmed for it’s Fall release.  Marvel has revealed that Venom, Nova, and Iron Fist will all be joining the ever expanding roster of Disney Infinity: Marvel Superheroes.  On top of that, Marvel announced that their will be a Spider-man Play Set, that comes with Spidey and Nova.  Venom, Iron Fist, and Nick Fury will all be usable in the Spider-man play set.  While Venom and Spider-man are natural fits, the inclusion of Fury, Nova, and Iron Fist may seem odd.  Spider-man actually teams with Nova, Iron Fist, and Nick Fury on the Disney cartoon Ultimate Spider-man, and this play set looks to draw from that universe, with Spider-man once again being voiced by actor Drake Bell.

The plot of the play set involves Green Goblin cloning the symbiote, and infecting New York’s inhabitants.  Spider-man then teams up with Iron Fist, Nova, Nick Fury and even Venom in order to defeat this infection.  No word on pricing, or release date, but it’s safe to assume each character will cost $12.99 individually, and the play set will run upwards of $34.99.  Not yet confirmed as figures are the Green Goblin, Dr. Octopus and Mysterio; all of whom were shown off in this play set’s trailer.

This reporter’s opinion:  Disney please stop.  My wallet is going to be massacred by Disney Infinity already, and the inclusion of a full Spider-man play set is only going to make this worse.  It looks awesome, and plays on all of my childhoods loves of Spider-man so well.  If they announce a Guardian’s play set too, I’m completely broke.

by, Bobby Marquardt

Amazing Spider-man 2 The Game Review

Amazing spiderman 2 cover

Spider-man has been my favorite hero since I was a young boy.  The story of great power coming with great responsibility has always resonated with me, and has made me a lifelong fan of The Amazing Spider-man (and even the Superior Spider-Man).  My love of Spider-man is what makes playing The Amazing Spider-Man 2 even harder.  I’ve seen good Spidey games before with Web of Shadows, and of course the beloved Spider-Man 2, so making an atleast solid Spider-Man game can’t be that hard.  Apparently for developer Beenox it is.  What we should have gotten from this game was a fun, open world New York romp that tells a fun side-story in the movie universe.  Instead we get a jumbled mess, with nausea inducing camera work, and just plain pathetic presentation.

Amazing Spider-Man 2 The Game is set in-between the first and second film in the Amazing Spider-man series, or at least that’s what it claims.  Or maybe not, because the timelines do not match up at all.  The first run in between Spidey and Max Dillion (aka Electro) appears in the film, but it then happens about 20 minutes into the game.  From there, the timelines get even wackier as you meet Harry Osborn for the first time since you were kids, which also supposedly happens early in the film.  See how very little of this makes any freaking sense?  If they wanted to make their own story, then they should have done it, but instead those chose to tell a mess of a story that just feels lazy.

The story for most of the game is focused on Spider-Man trying to stop the rise of Wilson Fisk (The Kingpin) as gang wars escalate all over the city.  About 2/3rds of the way through the game though, that story is thrown out the window and you fight a who’s who Spider-Man villains whose pure existence in this timeline makes no freaking sense.  For example, fighting Electro before the film couldn’t happen, as his transformation happens in the film.  I’d be willing to forgive them if these boss fights were well presented or fun, but they are pretty awful.  Beenox could have told a more grounded tale of Spider-man versus more street level villains like Kingpin, Hammerhead, and Kraven the Hunter, but through either upper management pressure or just plain idiocy made the final few hours of the game a jumbled mess.

Amazing spiderman 2 ss 1

ASM 2’s web-swinging and traversal should be fun, but is a nausea inducing snore-fest.

One of the biggest things about Spider-man that a developer needs to get right is the web swinging.  The feeling of swinging around New York City is something that only Spidey can do.  Plenty of other Spider-man games have gotten it right, but Beenox has never really been able to, seeming to prefer their Spider-man games focused into smaller arena like areas instead of the open world.  Their first foray in the first Amazing Spider-man game was hardly impressive with their heavily touted web rush mechanic failing to capture the real feel of Spider-man. For the sequel, they promised a bigger focus on that for the web swinging, but it ultimately seems this was all hype.  ASM 2’s web swinging is just not on par with previous games.  Maybe it’s the silly need to use both triggers, maybe it’s the still forced use of web rush, or maybe it’s the way the game becomes incredibly blurry whenever you swing (that made me feel like I was gonna throw up more then a few times), but it just doesn’t work well.  Add on top of that that the web rush mechanic still doesn’t work well, you find navigation around their poorly represented version of New York to be a chore.

New York City should be a playground for Spider-man to play in.  The buildings should provide fun places that Spider-man can run, climb, and swing on and the streets should be filled with interesting characters.  On top of that, there should be a natural ebb and flow to the way the game’s side missions arise.  Did you notice that I used the word “should” a lot in the last few sentences?  Because ASM 2’s New York does few little of any of that.  Where New York should feel like a massive area, it feels tiny and boring in this game.  The buildings do not have sense of height, as I was nearly always above all of the buildings (which then forced me to use the web rush mechanic which slows down the game).   The game’s missions also often drop you near Central Park, which negates really all web swinging.

Amazing spiderman 2 ss 2

Electro’s appearance in ASM2 the game makes no sense, given the game’s timeline.

On top of that, the game’s side missions are all incredibly linear that have Spider-man doing tasks like stop a bomb, or save people from a fire.  These should be fun, but each feel boring, and like a copy of the one I just did.  Oh, and if you don’t want to do the missions, you will have a “taskforce” hunting you for not doing them.  Beenox creates horribly boring missions, and then forces you to do them, if you don’t want your normal time playing the game interfered with.  Just let that sink in.

I feel like when this game was in development, Activision saw the success of the Batman: Arkham games and said “Hey, they’re doing stuff well there and people like it.  Do exactly what they’re doing.”  With Amazing Spider-man 2 instead of seeing Spider-man fight enemies across rooftops and while flying through New York, you are dropped into small combat areas and expected to fight in a stealthy manner that feels directly stolen from Arkham.  Spider-man is generally not a stealthy character, and certainly not to the levels that Batman is.  Beenox seems to not realize that, nor what makes the characters fighting style so special, as you have to use stealth takedowns that just have to lowering from the ceiling as though you are Batman.  Very rarely will you fight characters who force you into the air, but when you do the game’s web rush system for combat works tremendously.  Unfortunately, those moments are few and far between.  On top of that, the game’s boss fights often just have Peter beating up a character using normal moves for about five minutes.  It all just feels lazy.

Amazing Spiderman 2 ss 3

Alli Hillis does a decent job as Black Cat, but Sam Riegel’s Spider-man doesn’t fair as well.

Laziness fed into the game’s voice acting as well, with so many of the performances being just plain bad.  Sam Riegel reprised his role as Peter Parker from the first ASM game, and he still feels completely out of place of the Web-head.  Maybe it’s just the poor writing, but goodness gracious I never believed he was Spider-man.  Actors like Josh Keaton, Mike Vaughn, and even Neil Patrick Harris have all been believable as Spider-man because they didn’t feel forced or lazy while recording it.

Riegel on the other hand has been given an awful script, so his enthusiasm for the role feels forced.  His quips, which are a staple of Spidey, are all awful and their constant appearance made me hate them 20 minutes into the game.  Some of the game’s other voice actors like Ali Hillis and Steve Blum do well in their roles, but you can’t act your way out of a bad script.  Thankfully, at least the game’s sound effects are well done, and the score is serviceable.

I played this game on a PS4, but honestly had to check quite a few times, as the graphics felt like I was playing on an Xbox 360 and it was 2008.  The world is undetailed, there are graphical hiccups nearly everywhere, and it just looks plain meh.  I understand that it was a cross-platform game, but it’s bad by 360 and PS3 standards.    An open world game should have decent draw distances, but what they have just looks bad.

One big positive for the game is the people at Beenox love of the character.  I know that’s hard to believe after how much I’ve ripped the game, but the inclusion of hundreds of easter eggs from the characters comic history makes me feel like someone at that place still love Spidey.  Including nods to Alpha, Scarlett Spider-man, Superior Spider-man, and so much more had me actually believing that Beenox does love Spider-man.  On top of that, the inclusion of Stan Lee as a kindly comic shop owner was a great touch.

Amazing Spiderman 2 ss 4

Beenox should probably never make another Spider-man game again.

Conclusion:

Amazing Spider-man 2 had so much potential.  It was a return to the open world that Spider-man fans love, with a heavily touted upgrade to its web swinging mechanics, and a story that was supposed to be free from the movies.  What we got instead was what can be best called Amazing Spider-man 2: Arkham New York.  Beenox tried so hard to capture what made the Arkham series great and just reskin Batman as Spider-man.  Obviously what works for one character and universe doesn’t work for one like Spidey.  Add on top of that, nausea inducing combat and web swinging, poor writing, voice acting, and a story that doesn’t even make sense for the game’s supposed timeline and we have a just plain bad game.  If you need a super hero game, go play Infamous: Second Son.  If you need a Spider-man game, buy Web of Shadows of previous gen, just don’t buy this game.

Overall Score: 2 out 5

Full Disclosure: As I stated above, I didn’t finish this game as I just couldn’t bring myself to.  I played it for about seven hours, and according to others I still have about two to go.  I purchased my copy from Target, and played in on PS4.

Update 5-16-14: I completed the game, it only reinforced my score.

Disney Infinity Marvel Superheroes announced, arrives this Fall

At a special press event today in Los Angeles, Disney has revealed the the second phase of their best-selling game franchise Disney Infinity will bring in one of Disney’s heaviest hitters: Marvel Superheroes.  Marvel’s Editor-in-chief Joe Quesada made the announcement of Disney Infinity Marvel Superheroes along with Avengers and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. star Clark Gregg (Phil Coulson) as well as Brian Michael Bendis, writer of a multitude of Marvel comics, including Avengers, Ultimate Spider-man, and events like Siege, House of M, and much more.  Quesada revealed that the first six Marvel characters coming to Disney Infinity are Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Hulk, Black Widow, and Hawkeye.

The playable campaign world of Marvel Manhattan is four times larger then the largest previous Disney Infinity world, Metroville.  The campaign’s story looks to focus on Loki and MODOK bringing Frost Giants to Manhattan, and it’s up to The Avengers to stop them.  The story will be written by Brian Michael Bendis.  Marvel is focusing on giving players the ability to explore this new city, and has improved character movements tremendously.  Obviously heroes like Iron Man can fly, but characters like Captain America now have a super jump, and Hulk can climb buildings.  Their is a new skill tree that each character will have as well, with each hero feeling incredibly unique.  Hawkeye is naturally dependent on his bow, where Cap and Thor are more up-close brawlers.

Disney Infinity Marvel starter packThe six characters mentioned above are just the first of over 18 Marvel characters who will be joining the already massive Disney Infinity roster.  Other Marvel characters shown were Loki, MODOK, Nick Fury, Groot and Rocket Raccoon from Guardians of the Galaxy, Green Goblin, and Spider-man, with Disney teasing more characters that would not just be from the Marvel cinematic universe.  The starter set will include Thor, Iron-man and Black Widow, the portal of power, as well as two power disks and a currently mysterious crystal.  Disney teased that more information on the game will be coming at E3, likely with a few more characters shown off.

All new power disks will be arriving as well, with Disney themed items like Lola, Agent Coulson’s flying car in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., disks that change the character’s costume or can be used to call in allies.  For example, Iron Man can call in Iron Patriot.  All previous characters, power disks, and Toy Box mode saves will transfer into Disney Infinity 2.0.  On top of these new Marvel-themed items, there will be more Disney themed items as well.  They didn’t discuss any details, but this likely includes things like new play sets, characters and power disks. Disney Infinity Marvel Superheroes will be coming to PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3, Wii U, iOS, and PC this fall.

This reporter’s opinion:  OH MY GOD SOMEONE TAKE MY WALLET RIGHT NOW.  I’m a 21 year old man, and this has me far too excited.  Marvel coming to Disney Infinity seems like a natural fit, and the sheer amount of awesome characters that they can now release makes my wallet tremble with fear.  This move is also a big positive for introducing more Marvel characters to younger kids, which I love.  This has me so excited I’m considering putting down a pre-order right now.   Well done Disney.

by, Bobby Marquardt

Xbox One version of Amazing Spiderman 2 delayed indefinitely

amazing Spiderman 2In a shocking move, Activision has confirmed that the release of The Amazing Spider-man 2 for Xbox One has been delayed indefinitely, and may never actually release.  This news comes after a Neogaf poster found a piece of marketing material in which the Xbox One version was suspiciously absent (seen to the right).

An Activision rep told MCVUK the following “We want to inform you that we are revising our release plans for ASM2 on Xbox One.  When and whether ASM2 is released on Xbox One is TBD.”  Eurogamer received a similar comment, with a representative saying “We are working with Microsoft in an effort to release The Amazing Spider-Man 2 video game on Xbox One.  Currently, the game will be available on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii U, Nintendo 3DS and the PC on 2nd May, 2014 as previously announced.” (May 2nd is the European release date)

No reason has been given as of yet for the delay, and it is likely to come as a disappointment to many Web-heads out there.  As of 1pm central time, the game is still available for pre-order on websites like Amazon and Gamestop, who both still have the release date set for April 29th.  It especially strange that a game would be delayed or cancelled just two weeks before it’s release, which leads me to believe that there must have been something game-breakingly wrong about the Xbox One version to warrant an 11th hour delay.  Amazing Spider-man 2 will still release on April 29th for PS4, PS3, Xbox 360, Wii U, PC and Nintendo 3DS.

by, Bobby Marquardt

The Amazing Spider-Man 2: The Game announced, coming in Spring 2014

2014 will see the release of the next Amazing Spider-Man film, and Beenox will be releasing a Spider-man game to go along with it.  The Amazing Spider-Man 2 will release on Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4, Wii U, 3DS and PC.  The above trailer is reportedly the current generation version of the game, and one can assume the graphics on the PC, PS4 and Xbox One will be better.

Executive producer Stephane Gravel said the new title will not be a retelling of the games story, but an all new adventure for the wall crawler.  An all new edition to the game will be a Hero or Menace system, which will reward Spider-Man for stopping crimes, and have negative consequences should you choose to let the crime fester.  Marvel’s Chris Baker  promised a newly improved web swinging system that uses both triggers.  New York will also be much more detailed, with the Kingpin’s tower being seen in the trailer.

Beenox and Activision have developed three Spider-Man titles: 2010’s Shattered Dimensions, 2011’s Edge of Time, and 2012’s The Amazing Spider-Man.  It is safe to expect The Amazing Spider-Man 2 just before the release of the film on May 2nd, 2014.  If I had to guess, I’d say April 22nd.

by, Bobby Marquardt