Spider: Rite of the Shrouded Moon is a simple, simple game: jump around, spin webs, eat insects. However, it’s surprisingly deep and, at least for me, difficult at times. See, you play the role of a spider who just wants to munch on some insects. You capture your prey by spinning webs as you jump from point to point. There’s an arcade-style points system in play, too, that helps in replayability.
For every insect you devour, you gain some points. Standard, but you can also run up some pretty high numbers by chaining your dinners together by staying on your constructed webs. Again, it sounds simple but it’s harder than you’d think. Or maybe that’s just me. I’m a simple fellow…
Spider: Rite of the Shrouded Moon has you darting around different levels scattered throughout the seemingly abandoned Blackbird Estate. The real hook here is that the game’s weather has an effect on each and every level in the game. See, if you opt-in to allow the game to read your location data, the weather in the game will reflect the weather where you are. So if it’s pissing down with rain and you’re playing in the middle of the night, the game will take place in the middle of the night while the rain lashes it down outside. Similarly, if you’re playing during the day and it’s sunny, it’ll be mirrored in the game. If you don’t opt-in then you’ll just have to make do with whatever the weather is like where the developer is based. It’s a super neat touch that isn’t just a visual pleasure.
As I said, time of day and weather changes aren’t just there for show; they decide on which creatures will be roaming around Blackbird Estate. It really changes the way the game can be played. Perhaps you’ll tackle one level and just fill your belly with moths and what not, but come back during the darkness of night and you’ll find yourself having to launch Dave the spider at nasty hornets. You can’t eat hornets, and you wouldn’t want to. Instead, you kill them by doing what a spider does best.
In fact, Spider: Rite of the Shrouded Moon is quite a slow-burner if you’re a completionist because some challenges demand that you play during certain weather patterns, or when the moon is new, or when there’s no moon at all. It’s not for those who just want to bomb their way through the game in a single sitting, that’s for sure.
The game is very simple in its presentation, but that doesn’t make it any less impressive. The puzzle/platformer gameplay is best suited to these simple 2D landscapes, and it doesn’t hurt that the game is animated really, really nicely. Just don’t go into this one thinking you’ll be swinging around like Spider-Man. Different games, yo.
Spider: Rite of the Shrouded Moon PS4/PS Vita Review
Overall - Fantastic - 8.0/10
Spider: Rite of the Shrouded Moon sounds simple on paper but once you delve deep within Blackbird Manor, you’ll find a surprisingly deep game that’s not as easy as it looks. Puzzler lovers will find plenty to enjoy in chasing the highscores. And who knows? You might just find some secrets within…
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*Reviewed on PS4 Slim.