Spider-Man fans have never had to look too far to find interactive entertainment related to their Marvel hero. Spider-Man has inspired numerous games, spanning home computers, consoles, smartphones, and tablets.
Few characters could boast a presence on Atari’s original 2600 console as well as the PlayStation 4, but Spider-Man is one of them. In this article, we take a look at the vast range of Spider-Man games, both past and future.
The First Generation
Spider-Man’s first leap into gaming was on the primitive but much-loved Atari 2600 console, back in 1982. The game involved climbing skyscrapers and diffusing bombs, and is looked back on fondly by retro gamers, who describe it as “a good 8-bit game” where “one’s imagination fills in the gaps.”
Following Spider-Man’s console debut, he graced practically every console and home computer of both the 8-bit and 16-bit eras. His first portable outing was on Nintendo’s Gameboy in 1990. The Amazing Spider-Man was a side-scrolling game produced by Rare that boasts positive reviews to this day.
In 1991, nine years after his console debut, Spider-Man finally arrived in the arcade in the form of Spider-Man The Video Game. The game was produced by Sega and was a beat-em-up delivered in an upright cabinet format.
Moving into Present Day
As the new millennium arrived, Activision took over the Spider-Man license. The software house started off with a multi-format title (named simply Spider-Man), which was available on formats including PlayStation, Nintendo 64 and even Microsoft Windows. This “action adventure beat-em-up” won positive acclaim, and remains popular with Spider-Man fans who have left a number of positive IMDB reviews for it.
As the original PlayStation was replaced by the PS2 and then the PS3, and the Nintendo 64 was replaced by the GameCube and then the Wii, the Spider-Man games kept on coming. There were no less than 17 titles released across multiple formats between Spider-Man in 2000 and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 in 2014. The majority of these titles were produced by Activision, with Gameloft taking the lead on mobile titles.
Ever since The Amazing Spider-Man on the Gameboy back in 1990, Spider-Man has kept up a presence on portable consoles, with various game releases for Nintendo’s DS and 3DS range, as well as a few for Sony’s PSP and Vita options. In 2004, Nokia even ported Activision’s Spider-Man 2 to their ill-fated N-Gage, which was a hybrid mobile phone and portable console.
An unexpected side-effect of the release of Apple’s iPhone in 2007 was the sudden popularity of smartphone games. Unsurprisingly, Spider-Man spun his way onto the mobile gaming bandwagon, with a couple of dedicated games and two ports of console titles.
The most stand-out mobile Spider-Man title has to be Spider-Man Unlimited, an endless runner style game. It was released in 2013 and is still available for iOS, Android and Windows Phone. iTunes Store reviews average out at 4.5 Stars for the game, a significant achievement for a title that’s been out for so long.
Spider-Man also has a foothold in online casinos. Like many Marvel characters, Spidey has been the subject of bonus round slot machine games, including Spider-Man and Attack of the Green Goblin, both of which were produced by Playtech.
However, it’s now impossible to find these titles live since Playtech switched to producing DC universe slots early in 2017. People who wish to play casino games with similar heroes can find plenty of slot games on the Sun Bingo website, including games featuring BeoWulf, Thor, and Wonder Woman.
Thor’s Thunder, in particular, is very much like the Spider-Man slot games of old. The game features a progressive jackpot, known as the Thunder Jackpot, and there are various bonuses, including a hammer-based bonus round and multiple wild symbols.
Spider-Man PS4 is the working title for a new epic console adventure being produced by Marvel and Insomniac Games – the developers behind the PlayStation’s popular Ratchet and Clank series. Spider-Man fans will no doubt be hoping for something special after such a long gaming hiatus for the superhero.
However, impatient fans needn’t despair. With approximately 40 previous Spider-Man titles out there, there’s sure to be something worth trying out on an older console – or even a smartphone. There’s never any need to feel deprived of Spider-Man gaming!