Superman Returns: The Videogame

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a game by EA Games, and EA Tiburon
Platforms: XBox 360, XBox, Playstation 2
Editor Rating: 4/10, based on 2 reviews
User Rating: 6.8/10 - 79 votes
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See also: Movie-based Games, Superman Games Download
Superman Returns: The Videogame
Superman Returns: The Videogame
Superman Returns: The Videogame

One of the only entries of the world’s greatest superhero into the gaming industry. Superman Returns: The Videogame was developed and inspired by the events of the movie with the same name. Developed by EA Tiburon, and published by Electronic Arts alongside DC Comics, and Warner Bros., this single-player action game debuted in November 2006. The title made its way to Playstation 2, Xbox, Xbox 360, and the Nintendo DS.

From The Silver Screen to Your Screen

Superman Returns: The Video Game, uses the image of Brandon Routh, Kevin Spacey, Parker Posey, Sam Huntington, and Kate Bosworth reprising their own characters from the movie. The title however expands upon the story told in the cinema, and tasks Superman with fighting classic villains from his comic book history. Players can expect to fight Bizarro, Metallo, Riot, and Mogul during the game.

Superman is available in its entirety here, and players have access to all of his abilities. They are also required to master and use those abilities carefully, as they try and save the day in Metropolis. The concepts here are amazing, with well-thought-out situations such as Superman being completely invincible, but failure becoming possible if too many casualties or damage is done to the city surrounding him. The title also offers multiple solutions to the problems around the city, which require some puzzle-solving to get the best results out of him.

And while conceptually this might be one of the best solutions to the problem of having an invincible protagonist, the gameplay is actually poorly designed. To be completely honest, the flying aspect of the game felt very cool at the time, with the screen getting blurred, and being able to travel across the map so quickly. However, it aged poorly.

Definitely Clark Kent, but no Superman

The game had a very big map at the time, and it truly felt majestic, but everything inside looked from a generation before. The graphics are unappealing, to say the least, and it truly seems that this game wasn’t play tested at all, since the commands and gameplay feel thrown into a blender and delivered. From there the novelty of being a hero dies very fast, since you are pitted against the same number of robots, and flying creatures endlessly. The one thing that makes combat feel alive is the boss fights, which are few and far between, and they are a very small part of the game.

Conclusion

Finally, Superman is thrown into a story that feels very inconsistent. He seems too good to be able to do the everyday chores of a Superhero, and you’ll probably find the activities dull and tiresome after a couple of hours. Story-wise there is literally no character development or story for a fact. Superman Returns: The Video Game is a series of chained events, and uneventful battles, that culminate in a glorious battle against a tornado. Not any of the super villains, classic villains, or actual nemesis from Kal-El, but a giant tornado.

2

There are way better superhero games. Honestly, unless you are one of the biggest Superman fans of all time, you are better off playing anything else. Titles like Batman: Arkham Asylum, Spider-Man, Guardians of the Galaxy, Injustice, or even the Telltale Batman Series are all infinitely better. As we await a decent Superman game to come - even if it never does - just save yourself the struggle of playing this one.

PROS

  • Literally AMAZING concepts
  • Music Sounds Good

CONS

  • Script & StorySuperman Returns: The Videogame

Download Superman Returns: The Videogame

XBox 360

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

XBox

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Playstation 2

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Game Reviews

It's unfortunate that despite being an iconic superhero, Superman has always had less then stellar success in game format. Unlike the movie, which reinvigorated Superman for a modern audience, Superman Returns: The Videogame continues the long trend of mediocrity.

Superman Returns: The Videogame alludes to being a movie tie in, but that link is tenuous at best. Instead of battling Lex Luthor you'll instead defend Metropolis against the likes of Metallo, Bizarro and a few other super-villains that had nothing to do with the film. The only real links to the film are a handful of cutscenes that gloss over the events of the film in between your battles with robots, tornados and dragons, oh my.

To defend Metropolis you have the typical suite of Superman powers, such as heat vision, super breaths, flight and some powerful melee abilities. This sounds more interesting then it is however because most of the objectives, which typical task you with fighting some sort of enemy such as the aforementioned robots or averting a natural disaster, are pretty boring. Moreover the actual combat suffers from suspect collision detection and a targeting system that doesn't really give you a satisfactory way of changing targets. There are a few interesting sections that have you wrecking havoc as Bizarro or racing against Mister Mxyzptlk but overall the gameplay isn't very engaging and will leave fans of the movie wondering if EA just might have missed the point.

Superman Returns: The Videogame is graphically a mixed bag. Flying around looks and feels great but once you land you'll find that Metropolis looks a little muddy. Making matters worse the framerate is far from rock solid. Conversely the audio is strong, featuring an orchestral soundtrack and voice work from the primary actors in the film.

It doesn't help things that Superman Returns: The Videogame is also quite short, taking under 10 hours to complete with little replay value despite the sandbox design. Both fans of the movie and Superman in general should pass on this game and hope that the next Superman game will buck the trend of mediocrity.

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