After months of delays, Superman has finally made an appearance on the N64, and I'm sure you're waiting to hear how amazing the story, gameplay and graphics are. Well, you'll have to read the Bizarro World copy of this review, because this game is pretty poor in every respect. First of all, the story is some harmless pap about Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen being kidnapped by Lex Luthor and trapped in a virtual Metropolis, which gives the developers a chance to show off some of the blandest looking graphics on the N64. There's way too much fog in the outdoor areas, and everything looks jagged and lifeless. I know that they wanted to replicate the look of the WB animated series, but it just doesn't work out in 3D. The game is "mission" based, in that you have to complete a timed objective within a level in order to move on, but every other level begins with The Man of Steel (or Silicon, in this case) flying through rings a la Pilotwings or G-Police! I don't know about you, but the Superman I remember didn't fly through hoops for anyone! I want to change the course of mighty rivers and bend steel in my bare hands! You even have to pick up your superpowers!
The game controls are a bit sluggish, and poor Supes has been powered down so that flying into a building, certain objects or the ground will mak you come to a dead stop, which is frustrating, to say the least. The interior levels (when you finally get to them) are just as dull, and the maximum amount of enemies onscreen seems to be about six or so, it's hard to tell because you can't see all of them, especially the ones shooting you in the back! Strangely enough, there's an option to change the screen size from full screen to about 20% of its original size, which means you can play this game in a 3 x 4 inch box if you want to! By the way, the music in this game occasionally shows up and warbles away, unnoticed- if you weren't paying attention, you'd miss it!
There are 2 multiplayer games here for up to four players, and I was hoping to write something much more positive, but instead of the super-powered slugfest I was expecting, I get to putt around in a flying go-kart, picking up items and shooting at everything in sight! To make things worse, you don't even get to play as Superman in these levels! There aren't too many licensed titles that stick to their original source material, but this game strays so far from its roots that it's probably better off back on Krypton! If you're a diehard fan of the series you'll most likely disagree with me, but this one is a rental at best - as long as you pick up a copy of Smash Brothers so that you'll have a real game to play!
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