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Review: “Marvel’s Spider-Man”

Keith Mathew | Freelancer

With the popularity of Disney’s Marvel Cinematic Universe, “Marvel’s Spider-Man,” released Sept. 17, decides to go a different route. This new action-adventure game starts years after the masked hero acquired his powers — so no Uncle Ben trauma to go through for the tenth time.

The opening cinematic tells the player right away that Peter Parker has been in the hero business for years and is now a veteran.  There is a high energy tutorial which shows the basic abilities without leaving out any moves that may be needed. This is especially helpful because this game leans heavily on combo attacks to build up the focus bar, a resource used for instant takedowns or to heal during a fight.

Combat in this game is very fluid; dodging attacks is natural. However, learning the timing of the dodge takes some time to get accustomed to.  A combination of melee and ranged attacks in the form of gadgets sets the foundation of fighting enemies along. Additional skills picked up later in the game augment combat to make a personal style.

What is great about “Marvel’s Spider-Man” is the characterizations. Peter Parker is the awkwardly sarcastic and caring college graduate outside his Spidey-suit, but when he starts his crime fighting, he becomes the well-known quippy web-slinger we all know.  One liners and hilarious character interactions are abundant. Aunt May and MJ Watson both make appearances. In the customization of suits and abilities department, “Spider-Man” has succeeded. Unlike similar games, “Marvel’s Spider-Man” has separated abilities obtained from different suits and the suits themselves.  These suits can be purchased using different varieties of tokens found in the game, or can be awarded through the completion of tasks or collection of items.

Tokens come in six different varieties and can be obtained through the collection of backpacks or pictures, the clearing of a base, challenge or crime.  Tokens are also used in upgrades and passive abilities. The customization of a Spidey-suit consists of the look, the suit power and the passive abilities.  Once the suit and suit power are purchased, the suit power can be applied to any suit. This game gives what gamers want on that level of personalization.

With so much that is good about “Marvel’s Spider-Man,” there are also elements that could have been done better.  Knowing that the tokens collected throughout the game are helpful for powers and upgrades, I didn’t enjoy the vast amount of items to collect and complete.  The game makes me feel it is padding the runtime by having so many collectables.

Further into the game, enemies become large hordes and the dispatching of them becomes tedious. The gadgets are powerful but have limited ammo. Thus, after all the ammo is gone it’s all punching and dodging from there.

For those who like Easter eggs or references, this game is chock full of them.  Each suit is a reference to a different iteration of Spider-Man in comics, previous games or movies.  Suits include the Iron Spider from “The Avengers: Infinity Wars,” Spider-Man 2099 and others. Additionally, Pride flags can be found scattered throughout the city and one theatre’s signage can be seen with a proposal.

Despite the critiques, I think “Marvel’s Spider-Man” is a well-rounded game with great elements.  I would score this game an 8/10.

Contact the author at kmathew14@wou.edu

Photo courtesy of Insomniac.games

Organization for the disorganized

Rebecca Meyers | Lifestyle Editor

On the first day of class, it’s usually easy to spot the type of student with a color coded planner and neatly outlined schedule. For me, unlike these students, organization can be a challenge that requires constant effort. For those who need it, I’ve put together a number of different ways to stay organized when the common suggestions fall short.

It’s important to remember that not everything works the same for everyone. In my case, I used to repeatedly buy planners with the intention of using them throughout the year, hoping I’d keep the habit like some of my classmates. However, the pages would remain empty after the first few weeks of classes. I figured out that, as a visual learner, I also remember things better when I have frequent visual reminders.

This year, instead of buying a planner, I bought a large calendar and hung it near my desk, where I would clearly see my schedule laid out for me. I then applied this logic to my to-do list as well. Instead of writing it down in the back of a notebook, I wrote it on a whiteboard next to my bedroom door. It’s harder for me to miss that online assignment when it’s literally staring me in the face. For me, having a visual aid is effective, so students should consider trying multiple techniques until they find the one that works right for them.

It’s not just space but also time that can be utilized to keep life straight. Many of us have had the experience of being out with friends, ready to have a good time, only to be followed by the nagging feeling that something’s been forgotten. It can be helpful to get into the habit of checking Moodle, email or the calendar or planner in those short moments between classes or before work that might otherwise have been spent on social media. This reduces the chance that that assignment will be remembered at 2 a.m. the night before.

Another challenge is that it’s easy to become overwhelmed when there’s a long list of things to do and no plan. Even if planning out every hour of your schedule isn’t your strong suit, even taking small steps in advance will help get that assignment started quicker.

While living the ultra-organized life isn’t for everyone, that doesn’t mean us disorganized people need to shoulder more stress.

 

Contact the author at rmeyers17@wou.edu

Photo courtesy of Paul F. Davis

 

Fall sports recap

Lake Larsen | Sports Editor

Football

L 17-24 vs. Angelo State University

L 17-50 vs. Central Washington University

L 17-28 vs. Azusa Pacific University

W 38-13 @ Humboldt State University

Leaders:

Rushing- Omari Land 47 rushes for 282 yards

Receiving- Tyjuan Prince 17 receptions for 238 yards

Volleyball

Concordia Tournament:

L 0-3 vs. Northern State University

L 2-3 vs. Colorado Christian University

L 1-3 vs. Tiffin University (OH)

DII West Region Showcase:

W 3-1 vs. Holy Names University (CA)

W 3-1 vs. Humboldt State University

L 0-3 vs. Stanislaus State

W 3-0 vs. Hawaii Pacific University

 

L 1-3 vs. Concordia University (OR)

W 3-0 vs. Montana State University Billings

L 0-3 @ Seattle Pacific University

W 3-1 @ Saint Martin’s University

L 1-3 vs. RV Central Washington University

L 1-3 vs. Northwest Nazarene University

 

Leaders:

Kills: Mariella Vandenkooy 128 Kills

Blocks: Morgan Haskett 54 Blocks

Women’s Soccer

L 0-1 @ Cal State San Marcos

W 1-0 @ California State University, Dominguez Hills

T 2-2 vs. Stanislaus State

L 1-2 vs. Academy of Art

L 1-4 @ Simon Fraser University (B.C.)

W 1-0 vs. Montana State University Billings

W 1-0 @ Northwest Nazarene University

 

Leaders:

Goals:  3 Goals Alexie Morris

Points: 6 Points Alexie Morris, Alyssa Tomasini

Cross Country

Men: 2nd, Women: 2nd @ Linfield Harrier Classic (4K/6K)

Men: 1st, Women: 1st Ash Creek Invitational (5K/7K)

Women: 5th SF State Invitational (6K)

 

Contact the author at lllarsen13@wou.edu

Photo courtesy of: Paul F. Davis

Rolling out of town

Bailey Thompson | News Editor

After only a few short months of students riding orange bicycles around Monmouth, the SPIN Bikeshare company decided to move in another direction. Although the bikes were widely utilized during their time on campus — between the months of April and August — the choice to remove the bikes was ultimately beyond Western’s control.

“Through the end of May we were having 150 rides a day on the bikes, so we saw that it was pretty successful. Students were using it; feedback we were getting was positive,” said Vice President of Student Affairs Dr. Gary Dukes. There was nothing on the university’s end to suspect that the program would not be sustainable.

However, Dukes recalled that “we got a call from them saying they were ending their program and within a couple weeks they’d be collecting bikes.” So, with that, the bikeshare program had ended not long after it began.

Looking to the future, Western is open to the idea of bringing another program — either with bikes or electric scooters — to campus, but it would have to be the right fit for the community.

“We’ve been trying to see how things are going in Portland with their scooter program because they just started it this summer, and I think there have been mixed responses to their program,” Dukes said. “What’s interesting… is in Portland you can’t ride them on the sidewalks (and) you have to have a helmet. I think that’s an Oregon state law. So, I think we’re not sure how well that would work here… if anything, we’ve been trying to look at other companies that might bring a bike program back to Western.”

With many other bikeshare programs, though, the concern is that the companies are looking for locations to supply additional funding sources beyond the ridership fees, which would essentially force students to pay more for the same service.

“I think it’s just seeing what students want to do moving forward,” Dukes concluded.

In time, Western will choose the best solution for its community in the absence of the SPIN bikeshare program. In the meantime, students will just have to wait and see what the future holds.

 

Contact the author at bthompson15@wou.edu

Photo courtesy of: Paul F. Davis

A summer of improvements

Bailey Thompson | News Editor

Arriving back to Western’s campus this week, students can observe a number of changes from last spring. Although certain locations are still under construction, others have completed their transition and are open for students to utilize and enjoy.

Completed Relocations:

Three of Western’s organizations have recently acquired new homes: the WOU Food Pantry, the Student Activities Board and the Stonewall Center. The WOU Food Pantry is now located in the former Oregon Military Academy building, which lies across the street from Heritage Hall. Volunteers at the Food Pantry urge students to take advantage of this free resource, as many may not have realized it has moved. Additionally, SAB and the Stonewall Center have also undergone relocations within the Werner University Center. The SAB office will hereafter be housed on the second floor of the WUC, where the Wolf Express was previously located. The Stonewall Center, which formerly shared a space with Abby’s House, has moved to the location recently vacated by SAB.

Current Renovations:

The Child Development Center and Natural Sciences have both began construction on upgrades to their facilities. The Child Development Center, when construction is finished, will be moving from Todd Hall to the University Park and Conference Center buildings. According to the University Computing Services newsletter, the remodel will join Units A, B and C together, and, to prepare for this, the ROTC program and Forensics Lab have been moved to Academic Programs Support Center and Bellamy Hall, respectively. Natural Sciences has also begun an extensive remodel, which is not slated to be completed until September of 2019. However, the basement and first floor will be open for classes as usual for fall term.

 

Contact the author at bthompson15@wou.edu