Spider-Man is arguably one of the most popular comic book characters of all-time, so it makes sense that he is also one of the most popular video game characters. Spider-Man’s been every sort of game imaginable ever since Atari. He’s been featured as a playable character in console games, online games, mobile games, and arcade games. We dove into them all this week, and we’ve got some observations. Here’s a list of the 10 best Spider-Man games ever.
10. Spider-Man: The Videogame (Arcade)
There’s a special place on any list for arcade games, and Spider-Man: The Videogame is just another reason why the arcade titles of the 90s were such great works of entertainment. Stridently dedicated to the source material, it’s amazing how far Spider-Man went to stay true to the comics by including great villains like Dr. Doom and Venom.
9. Spider-Man: The Movie Game
Treyarch would go on to make a great many deal of games you’ll see on the list, but Spider-Man: The Movie Game was such a great start for the studio. Though it wasn’t the first 3D Spider-Man game, this tie-in title to the first Tobey Maguire film set the stage for fantastic 3D gameplay included combat, web swinging, and wall-crawling.
8. Marvel vs. Capcom 2
Another arcade staple, Marvel vs. Capcom 2 holds a special place in many a gamer’s heart. While it’s not necessarily a narrative game, nothing is more exhilarating than chaining together a thrilling combo using Spider-Man’s creatively imagined fighting moves.
7. Lego Marvel Super Heroes
The Lego Marvel games are a truly surprising delight. Full of humor and fantastic gameplay, these open world games are give players unlimited creativity to play around with their favorite Marvel superheroes. Swinging around a Lego city as Spider-Man feels fantastic, and the game is almost entirely designed to let you just have as much fun and freedom as possible.
6. Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2
A hack-and-slash with Marvel characters? Yes, please. Before the idea of ever seeing Spider-Man team up with the Avengers onscreen ever became a reality, Spider-Man was taking down enemies alongside Earth’s mightiest heroes in this video game adaptation of Marvel’s Civil War. Yep, that Civil War. Spidey teams up with characters as varied as Wolverine and She-Hulk in this game, so you can forget Captain America: Civil War: Ultimate Alliance 2 was the biggest crossover event for Marvel fans.
5. Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions
Shattered Dimensions is unique in that it’s actually almost like four different Spider-Man games in one. Due to the plot, Spider-Man is forced to interact with multiple alternate dimensions, and the alternate Spider-Men who live there. Players cycle through the original Marvel Spider-Man, a future world’s 2099 Spider-Man, 1920s noir Spider-Man, and Ultimate Spider-Man. Each character plays in their own unique world with their own stories and villains.
4. Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3
It’s not cheating putting two Marvel vs. Capcom games twice, when they’re over a decade apart. Spider-Man returns to the crossover fighting game better than ever with 10 years worth of new moves and a story which Capcom smartly incorporated into their long overdue sequel.
3. Spider-Man: Web of Shadows
The top three games on this list all share the same strengths which make them the best Spider-Man games of all-time. Web of Shadows gives the player the freedom to explore Manhattan and enact amazingly fluid combat. By the time the game hit shelves, Treyarch had already swung through a couple Spider-Man games, so this iteration kept their formula mostly intact. If you want to swing around with Wolverine and battle Venom, Web of Shadows is a crowd pleaser.
2. Ultimate Spider-Man
Treyarch’s follow-up to the number one game on our list, Ultimate Spider-Man was a bright, cel-shaded version of its predecessor, taking place in the Ultimate universe of Marvel superheroes. Over ten years later, and the game still looks as fun and amazing as it did on the Playstation 2.
1. Spider-Man 2: The Movie Videogame
The game which essentially perfected the 3D Spider-Man game, the tie-in for the second Spider-Man film remains a fan favorite for its ambitious scale, and unprecedented mechanical success. It’s basically Grand Theft Auto starring Spider-Man, and you are free to explore a huge Manhattan, accepting quests from people on the streets and fighting random street crimes. It was truly an open-world game with great villains to encounter, like Black Cat and Mysterio. Unlike GTA, there’s no need to hijack a car: Spider-Man swinging around huge skyscrapers is the preferred method of travel here.