AS many Spider-Man films as there are and will be – such as the upcoming Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse – the games based on the wall-crawler are far more greater in number and variety. For instance, its hard to imagine these games without interative web-swinging, but back in the ‘90s, Spider-Man games were side-scrolling beat-em ups.
With Insomniac Games’ Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 being expected to make landfall sometime this year – later, rather than sooner – let’s take a look at some of the best Spider-Man games that have come out over the decades.
Spider-Man: Edge of Time
A sequel to Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions (listed below), Edge of Time is a bit of step-down; it features only two playable Spider-Men in a gameloop that is neither imaginative or fun.
The high point of Edge of Time is actually the story, and how it uses the original Spider-Man, Peter Parker, and Spider-Man 2099 a.k.a. Miguel O’Hara, whether in the narrative or the duo playing off each other.
Unique among games based on Spider-Man, Ultimate Spider-Man is a cell-shaded game.
Somewhat based on the original series written by famed comic book writer Brian Michael Bendis, Ultimate Spider-Man tells a slightly different story of Spider-Man and Venom, and players are able to control both characters in their individual storylines that run parallel to each other.
Gameplay between both also varies. For example, Venom requires sustenance in the game. In other words, players will need to bring Venom heads to devour. Don’t let the cel-shaded animation fool you; Ultimate Spider-Man is a dark game.
Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions
For anyone that enjoyed 2018’s Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, give Shattered Dimensions a try.
Available on a wide range of platforms, Shattered Dimensions features four different versions of Spider-Man: Ultimate Spider-Man, Amazing Spider-Man, Spider-Man Noir and Spider-Man 2099.
Instead of being skins or costumes, these Spider-Men play different roles in the game’s story that spans different corners of the Marvel multiverse.
As each have different gameplay styles, they also have to face off against a multitude of iconic Spider-Man and Marvel supervillains, from Kraven the Hunter, and Juggernaut to Deadpool.
Spider-Man: Web of Shadows
Ever wondered what Wolverine would look like if he was infected by the Venom symbiote? Well, then this is the game to check out.
Essentially a Spider-Man vs. Venom story, Web of Shadows has Venom infecting the entirety of New York with symbiotes, which transforms civilians into the black-blobbed monsters and it even infects superheroes and supervillains.
The game also features diverging narratives through a morality system that is affected by the choices players make as Spider-Man. Depending on what the player chooses to do, the ending of the game changes.
Based on Sam Raimi’s beloved Spider-Man 2 film, this game is easily the best Spider-Man game based on a Spider-Man film. The game more or less follows the original story, but the big reason it became a hit among gamers when it was released in 2004, was due to it’s web-swinging mechanic.
Previous Spider-Man games never managed to pull off the web-swinging and some avoided it like a plague.
The game also has the original cast reprise their roles by lending voice acting.
The gold standard for Spider-Man games, Marvel’s Spider-Man was released back in 2018 exclusively for the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5.
Combining revolutionary web-swinging mechanics and a robust combat system that tickled the taste buds of casual and hardcore gamers alike, along with a great story that perfectly weaved in Miles Morales, the game was an instant hit and made gangbuster sales.
The upcoming Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 by Insomniac will pick up where this game and Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales left off; Peter and Miles working together to fight crime, with Harry Osborn – infected by the symbiote Venom – being released from containment.