Generally favorable reviews - based on 60 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 48 out of 60
  2. Negative: 0 out of 60
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  1. 100
    I honestly can't fathom going back to driving a car in the next installment of "Grand Theft Auto" – the world is just so much cooler when you can explore the whole city, meaning everything up in the air as well. Manhattan becomes a giant jungle gym for Spider-Man to play in, and it is a blast.
  2. Spider-Man 2 is the definitive superhero game, and a benchmark for all future comic book titles.
  3. Easily one of the best comic based video games to ever hit home consoles. It's a fanboy's dream in terms of living out the life of a superhero. Just remember that it's only a game … leave the underoos and silly string at home.
  4. Cheat Code Central
    Treyarch has managed to pull off the best movie to game adaptation yet as I've now played the game and seen the movie...If you've ever dreamed about fighting crime as the webhead, this game is your own personal genetically enhanced spider bite.
  5. On the Xbox, the game is a visual stunner. As impressed as I was by "True Crime"'s recreation of Los, Spider-Man 2 surpasses it because even though it is about half the size of the real New York City, everything is so distinct (the streets' repetitiveness plagued "True Crime") that I am grateful for that decision.
  6. There are some great touches of humor throughout the game, especially when you encounter Mysterio (I haven't laughed out loud at a game in quite a while).
  7. A surprisingly original experience.
  8. An absolute blast even if you do nothing more than simply swing around town. Without the extremely responsive and precise controls, this would not be possible.
  9. Action, adventure, mystery, intrigue, romance, combat, exploration; this game has it all, and at times dangerously approaches becoming a simulation. That's just how immersed you will become.
    Regardless of how cheesy it may be, we're glad that there's a slow motion 'Spidey Sense' button, it allows you to appreciate all of the work that has gone into the animation.
  11. 92
    It has such immense replay value, from beating up villains to helping strangers on the streets or swinging inbetween the skyscrapers.
  12. The end result though is a very playable method of swinging through the city yet at the same time looking flashy and a lot like the way it was done in the movie. You can imagine the final few seconds of the first movie to get an idea of what you can expect, except you'll actually be doing it.
  13. Not only the very best super hero game ever made, but it is also the very best movie based game ever made.
  14. What I think is the most significant about the game is that it takes the movie's story, but it doesn't deviate from the gameplay that makes Spider-Man so fun. And this time it's very open ended.
  15. What Spiderman 2 boils down to is a lot of "Hell yeah!" excellence with just a little "Aw, damnit" thrown in for good measure. It's still an excellent game, and it's a superb example of how a movie license should be treated, but in the end, it probably won't crack any top 5 lists.
  16. 90
    Between the massive boss encounters and hours of swinging around Manhattan, you're in for at least a week of play.
  17. If it sounds hard to web swing into a wall run, grab a little girl's balloon as you jump off the wall to attack a thug, and yank another goon into the air with you as you drop, then you're beginning to understand how complex some of these move combinations can be.
  18. This is finally a comic book game worthy of the character.
  19. 90
    The best Spider-Man game yet made. From the rich combat system to the simple, inexhaustible joys of swinging through the city, Spider-Man 2 delivers the experience web-slinger fans have been begging for since time immortal.
  20. 90
    Offers players the biggest, uninterrupted, free-roaming modern urban environment that console gamers have ever seen...Here is a game that manages to make even the most basic tooling-around-town a rewarding, engaging experience.
  21. Play through the game for a while and you'll find something new that you previously wouldn't have believed possible. As I mentioned before, climbing up to the top of the highest skyscraper is something that simply HAS to be tried by all.
  22. 90
    Spider-Man 2 does the best job of delivering a super-hero game ever, topping Neversoft's first valiant effort, and Treyarch's technology coupled with its craft makes you feel like Spider-Man like no other game has ever done.
  23. The mini-missions do disrupt the flow of the game's interesting but short story, but it's an enjoyable distraction regardless of how repetitive they become.
  24. May not be perfect, as it does have some flaws in the graphics department and enemy A.I. causing the game to seem unbalanced at times, but with the new features and enhanced gameplay of this title easily makes it a Must Have game.
  25. While the style of game isn't anything we haven't seen before, the implementation of a free-roaming environment and the scale of the environment all comes together for a fantastic gameplay experience.
  26. A mix of Tony Hawk's Pro Skater, Minority Report (also by Treyarch) and Grand Theft Auto III, Spider-Man 2 opens up the Spidey experience like no other Spider-Man game before it. That's not to say it doesn't have some flaws, but if you're looking for a fantastic Spider-Man experience, this is it.
  27. 88
    If you just forget the missions and go around beating thugs senseless, you can have hours of fun.
  28. 88
    The simple joy of web-slinging will be remembered as one of the best gameplay experiences of 2004. Easily the best use of the open-ended gameplay structure since the original "Grand Theft Auto."
  29. Even with the redundant missions and laughable voice-overs, the good easily out weighs the bad and after playing Spider-Man 2 rigorously for three days straight, with only about two hours sleep in between, I'd have to say it's the best superhero game I've ever played.
  30. Official Xbox Magazine
    Slinging, jumping, and crawling your way up to the very tip of the Empire State Building and surveying the traffic below is almost worth the price of admission alone. [Sept 2004, p.78]
  31. The free-roaming gameplay, expansive environments, fun combat and commendable graphics all make for a great experience, and the fact that it comes in a superhero game is just icing on an already-great cake.
  32. 85
    While Spider-Man 2 has some issues, nearly everything is outweighed by the fantastic web-slinging and the huge city environment.
  33. 85
    Spider-Man 2 is not perfect, but it's innovative, with some of the quickest and most fluid movement since Ninja Gaiden. If you like the character, this game will let you feel like him more than any previous title, and that in itself makes Spider-Man 2 a success.
  34. If you can get passed a little repetition and some frustrating boss battles, chances are you'll find Manhattan to be a great place to spin your web.
  35. Spider-Man 2 is a genuinely fun game, as it has you swing from building to building, beating up criminals and chasing Doc Ock.
  36. The main plot can be completed in a rental period though, so skilled gamers should rent first to see whether the fun of Spidey's web slinging offsets the repetition of the game's missions.
  37. 84
    It's not the most simple of games to pick up and play, but once the controls are familiar webbing Spidey through New York is a dream.
  38. While the open-ended design certainly adds replay value to an otherwise short game, its ambitious nature ultimately kept it from attaining the status that it otherwise could have.
  39. The goal of any superhero game is to make you feel like the hero, and by that standard, Spider-Man 2 is unrivaled. That it also happens to be a fantastic action game is icing on the cake, a true treat for both fans of the webslinger and general gamers alike.
  40. Play Magazine
    If the name of the game is immersion, fun and a connection with the environment, Spidey wins the prize in my book. [Aug 2004, p.52]
  41. The only real "drawback" I found with the game is the repetitiveness of the "random crimes". It won't take too long for you to have exhausted all renditions of the crimes. This wouldn't be an issue if it weren't for the fact that you have to perform these duties to move from chapter to chapter. Luckily, the combat is fun enough to keep these from being overly tedious.
  42. Without doubt extremely enjoyable for fans, simply because controlling Spider-Man has never been executed so well. There are problems with the main game, there's problems with its presentation; however we still find ourselves loading up the game just to swing around New York again.
  43. So it's short; Steve Wonder could probably rock the combat engine like nobody's business. [Aug 2004, p.97]
  44. Special attention was paid to capturing the athletic tumbling abilities that Spider-Man exhibited in both the comic books and the movies, and it shows. The incredibly agile moves that a player can pull off with Spidey are astounding.
  45. I feel in this generation of consoles there is no reason lips shouldn't move when talking, heck even if they aren't in sync with the words just make them move.
  46. 80
    Choose to ignore the plot and the side missions if you like; the hidden races, the token hunts and the tremendous feeling to be had from simply exploring, swinging and crawling about the city are more than enough to justify purchase.
  47. Unfortunately, you really only beat up thugs in the same manner most of the time, the story missions that have to do with the movie are appalling, and the whole thing seems like it could have been a lot better. This isn't to say that it isn't a good game; it just isn't a great game. It is also short as well.
  48. While Spider-Man 2 truly puts you in the webbed booties of the wall-crawler and boasts a ton of freedom to do what you want, there's not enough variety to keep things fresh from start to finish.
  49. The game design doesn't take full advantage of the huge city, so instead you'll usually end up repeating the same half-dozen or so tasks over and over again, with some unique challenges thankfully sprinkled in to keep things moving.
  50. netjak
    If you factor in the poor character models, horrendous draw distance, oft-mediocre voice acting, and incidental story, Spider-Man 2 comes down to a single gimmick: the excellent web slinging.
  51. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    I give developer Treyarch credit for its ambitious GTA-style playground game design, but the errands Spider-Man sends you on are repetitive and dull. Combat is part of the problem; you can buy all sorts of fancy moves and combos, but why bother when button-mashing works just as well? [Sept 2004, p.98]
  52. The fairly repetitive and shallow missions, the dreary presentation of the film plot, and the uneven sights and sounds are normally sufficient to warrant a 'fans need only apply' status.
  53. Xbox Nation Magazine
    The web-slinging parts of the game are brilliantly done...Yet on the ground, the game looks and feels remarkably ugly. [Sept 2004, p.94]
  54. 70
    It's a very minor masterpiece; a perfect execution that's inherently shallow rather than profound. Give credit, though, to a hype-free summer blockbuster that will doubtlessly leave the senses tingling.
  55. The structure itself is brilliant, but within it is nothing more than the padding of a relentless succession of ultimately quite simple challenges that you soon tire of.
  56. The Dolby Digital soundtrack is somewhat disappointing, as despite having utilised many elements from the film it lacks the power and punch one could have hoped for – even the city sounds a little too quiet at times.
  57. AceGamez
    As much fun as swinging around the city and helping random people is, Spider-Man 2 could have been an absolutely amazing title had the developers spent a little more time crafting better missions and crimes to stop and actually giving the enemy some AI instead of patterns to repeat.
  58. While Spider-Man 2 is quite entertaining during its major challenges, it grinds to a halt when you are forced to wander around saving random people.
  59. Edge Magazine
    Spider-Man 2 presents players with a city ripe for action and exploration, but once you swing down out of the clouds and take a closer look at the grubby streets and roads strewn with vehicles, you'll find little to pique your interest. [Sept 2004, p.100]
  60. games(TM)
    Spider-Man 2 emerges as not only a movie licence that eschews the 'fast-buck' approach, but as an enjoyable game in its own right – which is chiefly a testament to just how compelling it is to have superpowers and a vast city in which to show them off. [Sept 2004, p.118]

Awards & Rankings

#10 Most Discussed Xbox Game of 2004
#23 Most Shared Xbox Game of 2004
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 55 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 46 out of 55
  2. Negative: 3 out of 55
  1. Kev
    Aug 22, 2004
    Great websling system, but poor game overall.
  2. Oct 16, 2021
    Awesome action and fun to play it's really interesting and cool graphics bro
  3. Aug 31, 2021
    This game is so old but so good this is how a spider-man game should be and for A Xbox/ps2 game this holds up nicely