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Spawn (SNES) Review

Todd McFarlane's Spawn (SNES) Cover
Todd McFarlane's Spawn (SNES)

In the mid 90’s, you would always want to get your hands on the latest and greatest SNES brawler especially in the fall season where some incredible games would drop and be competing for your hard earned coin on that Christmas Wishlist. Spawn being an Acclaim released title in 1995 you would think that spawn was immediately a bad game. Today you’ll find out if the Spawn SNES game holds up today.

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Todd McFarlane's Spawn (SNES) 1
Why do you people always question? Why ask why, when how is so much more fun?

The Marvel and DC franchises got their fair share of Spider-Man or Batman games on the SNES like Batman Returns or Maximum Carnage so why not have image comics come on down and be the next contestant with their own game featuring the dark and sadistic spawn as the main character.

Todd McFarlane's Spawn (SNES) 2

Spawn is an action platformer beat em up which is definitely unique for the time frame it was released in. It’s not exactly the Batman Returns or Spider-Man Maximum Carnage type of beat em, since you can only move from left to right while beating enemies up. It’s almost like the adventures of batman and robin or Ninja Warriors in that sense which are both great games in their own regard.

Todd McFarlane's Spawn (SNES) 3

I spoke about Ninja Warriors in my top beat em ups released on the Super Nintendo so if you’re into brawlers like I am, definitely check that out.

Spawn can perform a ton of basic punches or kicks as well as block enemy attacks or jump. To make things a bit more complicated, his move set also varies when in the air or crouching. Spawn has 16 basic attack moves you can perform. Then spawn can do all kinds of crazy stuff like wall jump, dash or glide to safety.

Todd McFarlane's Spawn (SNES) 4

He even has special abilities like a revolving uppercut, a fireball, a hell raising uppercut. Each one of these moves takes up a specific set of PSI energy and all of these special moves has to be performed like a street fighter move. The problem is, how the hell are you supposed to know how to do them all. Chances are you’ve probably bought a loose copy of Spawn or are playing it on emulator so I would recommend having GameFAQs open to at least try out each of the moves before diving right in.

Todd McFarlane's Spawn (SNES) 5

To add to the madness, just take a look at the new area where you have to use the wall jump to progress. You not only have to master a new mechanic here but now you have to do it with a gunman shooting at you. It would have been better from a learning curve standpoint like in Super Metroid where in the secret wall jump room at least the Etecoon’s showed you how to do it not fire a machine gun at you every time you fall.

Todd McFarlane's Spawn (SNES) 6

Another great thing about Spawn on the Super Nintendo is the visuals. The cutscenes bring out the dark atmosphere of Spawn based on the design of the Canadian, yes I had to point that Tod McFarlane is Canadian being a fellow Canadian, and the character sprites and backgrounds just look so good.

It really makes you feel like you’re playing through the eyes of a spawn comic similar to how Maximum Carnage was laid out. Each move spawn has in his arsenal is really cool looking and the cape movement is just so bad ass as it floats around.

The soundtrack in Spawn fits the atmosphere and design flow of the game well. Most of the soundtrack is dark and moody rather than upbeat that you would typically hear in let’s say Super Mario World.

Todd McFarlane's Spawn (SNES) 7

If you played Spawn on an FX Pak Pro like I did you might notice that if you use save states the game might freeze when transitioning to a new area. This was a total bummer for trying to save my progress, but luckily there’s a password system that I’ll leave in the description so you can advance from stage to stage and there’s even unlimited continues to keep you going. One thing I wanted to mention is the difficulty curve, Spawn is extremely difficult and you’ll have to make use of the variety of moves that he’s got to hopefully cheese out some areas or bosses like I did. I found myself rushing towards the last section of the stage to hopefully avoid dying just to make sure I would progress. Take a look at this section where the Spawn is upside down. I found myself turning my head upside down to make it past this past, imagine how dizzy I was when flipped my head back up.

Spawn does have it’s downfalls, it’s still just a beat em up and doesn’t have much else going on as you make your way through the game. That’s not necessarily a bad thing because of the variety of moves and the presentation that comes along with Spawn. If you’re a comic book fan or are just tired of the same old beat em ups like Final Fight, Maximum Carnage or Batman Returns then spawn is a great alternative to scratch that beat em up itch you might have on the SNES.


Ultimately, the SNES Spawn game does bring something fresh to the otherwise bland genre of beat em ups. Considering the massive amount of wall jumping or cape gliding it's got available to you to go thorough and explore. If I had to put Spawn somewhere on the list of best super hero beat em ups, I would say that it might not be as good as lets say Maximum Carnage but more along the lines of The Death and Return of Superman or The Adventures of Batman and Robin.



Passionate gamer and nostalgia enthusiast. Journeying through the pixelated realms of retro video games, unearthing forgotten gems and sharing the joy. Join me on a nostalgic adventure! 🎮✨