Superman Returns is finally out, just in time for the release of the DVD and I don’t think EA could have waited any longer to release the game. It’s not like the game is a next gen masterpiece and it sure could have used the extra time to polish it up, both style wise and game play wise.
For a game that’s supposed to be a movie tie-in it doesn’t have a whole lot in common with the movie. You’ll fight Mongrul, Metallo and Bizarro, all of whom had nothing to do with the movie. Finally you get to fight someone that’s actually in the film, Lex Luthor. You’re free to go almost anywhere, from street level to thousands of feet above even the tallest building. The view from high up in the sky is neat at first, and it’s fun to zoom down through the clouds and wind through city streets and in between the skyscrapers at breakneck speeds, but gets old… fast.
The game is divided into chapters comprised of a series of objectives that only appear by flying around aimlessly until you get close enough to one to trigger it. As is evident by the way the game drags on and on, there are certainly plenty of objectives but there’s just not much variety to them. Early in the game most of your time will be spent fighting robots, all types of boring robots. Later you’ll be fighting evil monsters and even dragons. Yes that’s right, dragons.
One thing I found interesting is that there’s not a health bar for Superman, instead the city of Metropolis has one. So when the bad guys torch trees, throw cars, and beat up civilians it diminishes Metropolis’ health bar, and when it’s empty, it’s game over. It’s a novel idea, but doesn’t really do anything for me, if anything it’s kind of boring because it makes Superman totally invincible.
One of the positive things I found was the ability to pick up random people, fly around with them and drop them off on top of tall buildings. One annoying thing about it though was the inability to just drop them into water or while you were flying or just hovering. C’mon, make it realistic. Another neat little feature I found, and something that has no effect on the game what so ever, is when you’re flying around at top speed. When you break the sound barrier you hear a sonic boom. Other than that there weren’t too many things that really tickled my fancy.
Some of the negative things I found were that the cars look very cartoony and un-realistic, as well as the civilians running around all of Metropolis. For having all of the extra time to work on the game I thought that EA dropped the ball on a number of aspects. One would expect EA to finally start making some next gen games, but all this seemed like was a port of the XBox or PS2 version. Overall the game wasn’t terrible, but it was definitely not something I would go out and buy or recommend you buy either. Your best bet is to borrow it from a friend or rent it like I did.