Spider-Man Swingman Releases Energy Hook

“From the inventor of the acclaimed web-swinging movement in ‘Spider-Man 2′” is how Happion Labs advertise Energy Hook [official site], which seem a pretty clear statement of intent. Energy Hook wants to be a game of swinging around big open levels, running along walls, and generally getting up to nifty acrobatics. That’s the pitch. You can see for yourself how it’s turned out as, following a weird Kickstarter then ten months on Steam Early Access, Energy Hook properly launched today.

Energy Hook’s an extreme futuresport, zipping through futurecities and strange landscapes on a grappling hook, racing through time trials, pulling off tricks, jetpacking, building combos and… larking about. You lark about. Larking about with grappling hooks is nice, isn’t it? Goodness knows you can’t get me to shut up about it.

I do like that Energy Hook has different artists for different areas, showing some very different styles.

Spiderpal Jamie Fristrom took the idea of Energy Hook to Kickstarter in 2013, cheekily asking for an unmissable $1 because he was adamant he’d finished it no matter how little he raised. With $41,535 in the bag (minus fees and rewards and so on, obvs), he launched it onto Steam Early Access last year. Now it’s properly done and launched for Windows, Mac, and Linux.

An 18% launch discount brings Energy Hook to £11.14/14,75€/$14.75 on Steam. Here’s the launch trailer:


  1. jfultz says:

    Spiderman 2 for the PS2 was the first Spiderman game I played that actually felt like Spiderman, and it was largely because of the open world web swinging. The fighting was a bit of bolloxed button-mashing, except for the web pull thing which was neat, but it was fun to return to just to swing around the open world. A pretty similar feeling to Saints Row 4 with the super-jumps plus fly/glide.

    That having been said, trying to swing through a course of aerial targets like in the video, and having the targets cut your line, is not my idea of fun.

    • Tacroy says:

      This is kind of unrelated but my ideal version of SR4 would have had a “cool car” power, instead one of the stupid powers that didn’t deserve to be its own thing (like ground pound maybe) – essentially, the same thing as the car you can summon from the phone, except bound to a button. Press the button, and the car forms around you (and your posse).

      Upgrades to the power would upgrade the car, with abilities ranging from things like “clown car” to “gives you wings”.

      In my dream world they would have hired some of the Distance devs to put some of their amazing Nitronic Rush car physics in the game, too.

  2. Snarkman3 says:

    Man, they follow it so closely they even put the PS2 graphics hooooo

    In all seriousness, it doesn’t look very pleasing to the eye, which is important, I think, if you want to zip around like the Amazing Rocket-Spiderman. Shame.

  3. FroshKiller says:

    Why do you say the Kickstarter campaign was weird?

    • Rhandom911 says:

      It was “weird” because its goal was 1 dollar, and all the rest of the campaign was simply stretch goals.

  4. w0bbl3r says:

    Got to say it looks very clunky and not very fluid in the animations and movement, especially “slinging webs” at the buildings. How it just kind of jerkily appears is very immersion-breaking.

  5. DelrueOfDetroit says:

    Ok good. Now go get a job working for Insomniac and force me into buying a PS4.

  6. zind says:

    I was really excited at first but after watching the trailer something about the aesthetics and the Tony Hawk-esque trick ticker make me think it won’t really be my thing after all.

    I think I’ll just go play more Grapple instead: link to store.steampowered.com

  7. swat6296 says:

    Why the hell does nobody remember bionic commando from 2009? It was the only game with a swinging mechanic, where you actually felt the weight of the character during the swing. And god, those aerial fights with mechs, where you were constantly dodging rockets, flying at top speed only to grab side of the building at the last moment, swing, and punch the bastards straight into the atmosphere…