Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin (8-bit)

From Sega Retro


SpiderMan SMS title.png
Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin
System(s): Sega Master System, Sega Game Gear
Sega Master System
Sega Game Gear
Flying Edge
Licensor: Marvel Entertainment Group
Genre: Action[1]

Number of players: 1
Release Date RRP Code
Sega Master System
$? ?
Sega Master System
£29.99[3][4] 7065
Sega Master System
?F 7065
Sega Master System
DM ? 7065
Sega Master System
?Ptas 7065
Sega Master System
$? ?
Sega Master System
R$? 025290

Sega Game Gear
$34.9534.95[7] T-81028
Sega Game Gear
Sega Game Gear
£29.9929.99[8] T-81028-50

Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin, commonly referred to as just Spider-Man or Spiderman, is a platform video game based on the Spider-Man Marvel comic book series released for the Sega Master System and Sega Game Gear in 1991 and 1992 respectively. The Master System version was released at the same time as a Sega Mega Drive version, which although follows the same plot, is a different game to this version.


The infamous criminal known as The Kingpin has planted a bomb in New York City, blaming Spider-Man for it. Now Spider-Man must defeat various enemies and Super-Villains, avoiding the police and population at the same time, in an attempt to stop the bomb within 24 hours, to save New York and prove his innocence.


The 8-bit version of Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin is an action game split into eight stages, where the player can use Spider-Man's various powers to fight criminals and negotiate obstacles, while searching for all the keys necessary to defuse the bomb, within the limit of twenty four hours.

1 attacks and 2 jumps. Pressing 1 while holding Left or Right fires a webshot that stuns enemies for a few seconds. In midair, pressing 1 while holding Left or Right makes Spider-Man use his webs to swing around. Pressing and holding 2 near a climbable wall will make him crawl over the surfaces. Unlike the Mega Drive version, he can only crawl over background objects.

1+2 brings up an option mode, where it's possible to toggle the music and sound effects on and off, take photographs or return to Peter Parker's home to rest — which recovers health at the expense of time. Resting, however, makes you restart the level and only becomes available after the second stage, when a stone that teleports you home is given by Dr. Strange.

Spider-Man's web cartridges are limited and taking photographs of Super-Villains is the only way to replace them. You must hand said photographs to Robbie Robertson (the Daily Bugle's editor) in order to gain money, though he only accepts one photograph of each Super-Villain and only once.


In most stages all lesser enemies (humanoid only, animals do not count) must be defeated for the boss to appear. Spider-Man's spider senses will alert you when a boss is coming.

Notavailable.svg In Front of Daily Bugle
Police is hot on your tail. Enter the Daily Bugle building from top floor and, as Peter Parker, find out why everyone is after you. It's a single level, featuring no boss and no keys.
Notavailable.svg Warehouse
Time to find a way to prove your innocence. Investigate the nearby warehouse and search for clues. Fight against club carrying thugs and guard dogs. This time you will fight a mid-boss — a guy driving a forklift — as well as a stage boss: Dr. Octopus. This is also a single level and the key is acquired upon defeating Dr. Octopus.
Notavailable.svg Sewers
Your old friend Dr. Connors has transformed into The Lizard again and fled to the sewers. Fight mutated sewer thugs, possibly rabies infested rats and watch out for slippery walls. Navigate deadly traps and pitfalls to acquire The Lizard's key. There are two levels on this stage, with the key being in the second.
Notavailable.svg Power Station
Confront Electro in his domain, evading lightning bolts, robotic bats and gun-toting thugs, as you look for his key. Look for junction boxes that will turn off electricity bolts. Like the previous stage, it has two levels and the key is in the second.
Notavailable.svg Central Park
Defeat muggers, evade mutated giant bats and look for Sandman, who can only be defeated by luring him to the fire hydrants. Only one level this time and the key is gained after Sandman is knocked out.
Notavailable.svg Streets of New York
Criminals are wreaking havoc in the streets. Spider-Man has to face two of his sworn enemies: Hobgoblin and Venom. Once again there are two levels, each featuring a boss fight. Venom shows up without the need to defeat all the lesser thugs and both keys are acquired automatically.
Notavailable.svg Underground
Time to stop The Kingpin from finalizing his ultimate plan. Defeat previous super villains (depending on the level of difficulty), who have returned for a rematch, stop the bomb by punching the keys in the right order and finally capture The Kingpin. The final stage too, has two levels. If you run away during the battle with Kingpin, he will escape and you will not get the best ending.

In Nightmare difficulty level, Venom will randomly attack player during key levels.


A large number of Spider-Man's rogues gallery can be encountered in the game.

Dr. Octopus
Real Name: Otto Octavius, PhD

This brilliant scientist once experimented with a harness equipped with sentient tentacle like arms that can help him with his experiments. A freak lab accident fused the harness to his body and turned him into an insane criminal. While these tentacle arms make Dr. Octopus a formidable opponent already, his greatest weapon is his twisted intelligence.

In game, Dr. Octopus attacks with his arms from long range and occasionally lifts himself up with his arms. Arms can hit Spider-man and impact can send him far away. Beside that, he is not much of a threat as long as you can keep him tied up with your spider webs.

The Lizard
Real Name: Dr. Kurt Connors

Once a talented professor at the Empire State University, Dr. Connors lost his right arm in an accident. Fascinated with the reptiles' ability to grow back lost limbs, Connors injected himself with a experimental serum that contained a lizard's DNA. While it worked, it also turned Connors into a violent and viscious human-lizard hybrid with superhuman abilities. Connors occasionally turns into The Lizard when he is under pressure and wreaks havoc in the city.

The Lizard usually attacks Spider-Man with fast and hard to counter sudden attacks. He has no projectile attack but also very hard to contain in a corner. Webs, again, your most useful weapons.

Real Name: Max Dillon

Formerly an electrician, Dillon once hit by a lightning while working on a electric mast. Instead of frying him, this gave him ability to control electricity at will. Using his new found powers for profit, Electro turned to a life of crime and became one of the recurring villains of Spider-Man.

Electro is way easier compared to the level he is in. He can fire small bolts of electricity and jump around, making him harder to hit. Touching him also causes more damage to Spider-Man. Webs are the way to go.

Real Name: William Baker

A typical street criminal from New York, Baker hid himself in a nuclear test site in a desert while escaping from authorities. Detonated nuclear weapon caused his molecules to fuse with sand, allowing him to shape his body as he wants, such as enlarging his fists or allowing him to escape by turning into a mass of mobile sand. His only weakness is water.

Sandman is indestructable in combat and only way to stop him is to lure him to fire hydrants. He can be killed with a single blow if timed right.

Real Name: UNKNOWN (Might be Jason McAndle)

Hobgoblin is a notorious terrorist and mercenary, offering his services to the highest bidder. After being thwarted by Spider-Man multiple times, Hobgoblin became one of his sworn enemies. Almost nothing is known about him but he is believed to have come across the equipment used by Green Goblin, one of the Spider-Man's oldest foes and modified them for his personal use. In addition to his insanity, Hobgoblin uses a terrifying costume which hides his true identity and uses a very small mountable jet for movement. His primary weapons are hand grenades shaped like halloween pumpkins.

Hobgoblin will fly around the screen and attack player with pumpkin bombs. Because the fact that he can fly, he will be much harder to hit than other bosses, and drawing him to the ground is recommended.

Real Name: Eddie Brock

Years ago, Spider-Man found himself in a separate dimension with other super heroes and villains and fought against a powerful entity known as "The Beyonder". Spider-Man managed to come back wearing a black and white costume after his original costume was damaged during battle. Costume was capable of removing itself in a liquidic fashion and could mimic any other clothing with just Spider-Man's toughts. A few months later, Spider-Man found out that the costume was actually not some sort of a high-tech piece of clothing but rather a living organism, a symbiotic creature. With the help of Fantastic Four, Spider-Man managed to get rid of the creature. Angry over his abandonment, The Symbiote managed to escape and fused itself with Eddie Brock, a journalist who also hated Spider-Man (Spider-Man managed to find the real killer in a newspaper story Brock was working on, ruining his career) and become Venom. Even though these days Marvel markets Venom as some sort of a violent vigilante rather than a super villain, Venom used to be the one of the most relentless enemies of the wall crawler.

Venom will use the same moves the Spider-Man uses. This means he can also stun you with his own web shots.

The Kingpin
Real Name: Wilson Fisk

Wilson Fisk is the owner of the Fisk Enterprises, a massive and powerful conglomerate. Even though he markets himself as a humble businessman, Fisk is actually "The Kingpin", ruler of the New York's criminal world. Kingpin is a shrewd and merciless mob boss, capable of destroying his enemies before they even become a threat. Even though he never gets his hands dirty, thanks to the army of loyal henchmen he employs, he should not be underestimated. His criminal mind is one of a kind and he is no pushover in close combat either, thanks to his martial arts training (including but not limited to, Sumo wrestling) and his large body which consists mostly of muscles. He has been a consant threat to not only Spider-Man but also other heroes/vigilantes like Daredevil and The Punisher.

Kingpin will the final boss players will face. He has a large health bar and his attacks can cause serious damage while also pushing Spider-Man to the opposite side of the screen. He is also surprisingly fast despite his large bulk. Using copious amount of webs to immobilize him will be only way to stop him.


While having inferior in-game graphics compared to the 16-bit port, the 8-bit version has nicely drawn panel illustrations as cutscenes. This is, perhaps, the only aspect that can be considered superior to the Mega Drive version, which has the story narrated through simple text.

The Master System version is infamous for its very high difficulty, even in the easiest setting. Some players reported that they couldn't even pass stage 3, especially stage 3-2 (the key level).

Two secret easter-eggs are found in the game. One is a Pac-Man type mini-game with Spider-Man characters and a secret room which will allow Spider-Man dress like Venom. Both can only be acquired while playing Nightmare difficulty.[9]

Production credits

Master System version

Spiderman vs. The Kingpin a Sega of America Production
Spiderman, Peter Parker, Dr. Octopus, The Lizard, Electro, Sandman, Hobgoblin, Venom, The Kingpin, Dr. Strange, Jonah Jameson, Mary Jane, Robbie Robertson and the distinctive likenesses thereof are Trademarks of the Marvel Entertainment Group, Inc. and are used with permission.
Spiderman © 1990 Marvel Entertainment Group, Inc.
All Rights Reserved
Source Codes © 1990 Sega of America, Inc.
This program is produced under license from the Marvel Entertainment Group, Inc.
Source: In-game credits

Game Gear version

Spiderman vs. The Kingpin a Sega of America Production
Spider-Man, Peter Parker, Dr. Octopus, The Lizard, Electro, Sandman, Hobgoblin, Venom, The Kingpin, Dr. Strange, Jonah Jameson, Mary Jane, Robbie Robertson and the distinctive likenesses thereof are Trademarks of Marvel Entertainment Group, Inc. and are used with permission.
Source: In-game credits

Magazine articles

Main article: Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin (8-bit)/Magazine articles.

Promotional material

Main article: Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin (8-bit)/Promotional material.

Physical scans

Master System version

Sega Retro Average 
Publication Score Source
83 [10]
87 [11]
76 [12]
81 [13]
75 [14]
92 [15]
92 №19, p170/171
73 №43, p80
87 [16]
90 [17]
57 [18]
40 [19]
Sega Master System
Based on
12 reviews

Master System, US
AmazingSpidermanVSKingpin ms us cover.jpg
AmazingSpidermanVSKingpin ms us cart.jpg
Spiderman sms us manual.pdf
Master System, EU
SpiderMan SMS EU cover.jpg
Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin SMS EU Manual.pdf
Master System, EU
(Marvel variant)
SpiderMan SMS EU Marvel cover.jpg
Master System, EU
(Capcom variant)
AmazingSpidermanVSKingpin ms eu cover.jpg
AmazingSpidermanVSKingpin ms eu cart.jpg
Master System, AU

Master System, BR
SpiderMan SMS BR Box.jpg
SpiderMan SMS BR Cart.jpg
SpiderMan SMS BR Manual.pdf
Master System, BR (newer)
SpiderMan SMS BR Box Back newer.jpgNospine.pngSpiderMan SMS BR Box newer.jpg
Master System, MX

SpiderMan SMS MX box back.jpg

Game Gear version

Sega Retro Average 
Publication Score Source
65 [20]
93 [21]
85 [22]
70 [23]
90 №9, p59
84 №13, p146
88 [24]
79 [25]
78 [26]
84 [27]
92 [28]
92 №13, p26/27
75 [29]
91 [30]
Sega Game Gear
Based on
15 reviews

Game Gear, US
SpiderMan GG US Box Back.jpgNospine.pngAmazingSpidermanVSKingpin gg us cover.jpg
AmazingSpidermanVSKingpin gg us cart.jpg
Spiderman gg us manual.pdf
Game Gear, EU
SpiderMan GG EU Box Back.jpgNospine.pngAmazingSpidermanVSKingpin gg eu cover.jpg
AmazingSpidermanVSKingpin gg eu cart.jpg

Technical information

ROM dump status

System Hash Size Build Date Source Comments
Sega Master System
CRC32 908FF25C
MD5 FA10EE70E43385E88E5D1A008716668B
SHA-1 02EBEE891D88BACDADD37A3E75E05763B7AD3C9B
256kB Cartridge (EU/US)
Sega Game Gear
CRC32 2651024E
MD5 13E2E27559B0AE898306506219DCC68B
SHA-1 46B064B4B5A6444CE0E64E16A7E5CEC2087FB4D3
256kB Cartridge (US/EU)


  1. File:SpiderMan GG EU Box Back.jpg
  2. Electronic Gaming Monthly, "July 1991" (US; 1991-xx-xx), page 112
  3. Computer & Video Games, "September 1991" (UK; 1991-08-15), page 34
  4. Sega Power, "October 1991" (UK; 1991-09-05), page 28
  5. Supergame, "Novembro 1991" (BR; 1999-11-xx), page 40
  6. Sega Visions, "May/June 1992" (US; 1992-xx-xx), page 58
  7. GamePro, "September 1992" (US; 1992-xx-xx), page 128
  8. Computer & Video Games, "August 1992 (Go! Issue 10)" (UK; 1992-07-15), page 10
  10. Computer & Video Games, "September 1991" (UK; 1991-08-15), page 34-36 (34)
  11. Game Mania, "May 1993" (UK; 1993-xx-xx), page 81
  12. GamePro, "August 1991" (US; 1991-xx-xx), page 35/36 (37)
  13. Game Power, "Dicembre 1991" (IT; 1991-xx-xx), page 42-44 (44)
  14. Hobby Consolas, "Octubre 1991" (ES; 1991-xx-xx), page 36/37 (36)
  15. Joypad, "Octobre 1991" (FR; 1991-09-17), page 108/109 (108)
  16. Mean Machines, "August 1991" (UK; 1991-07-27), page 80-82 (80)
  17. Player One, "Septembre 1991" (FR; 1991-xx-xx), page 48/49 (48)
  18. Sega Power, "October 1991" (UK; 1991-09-05), page 28/29 (28)
  19. Sega Power, "October 1991" (UK; 1991-09-05), page 59
  20. Consoles +, "Novembre 1992" (FR; 1992-xx-xx), page 136
  21. Computer & Video Games, "August 1992 (Go! Issue 10)" (UK; 1992-07-15), page 10/11 (10)
  22. Game Mania, "May 1993" (UK; 1993-xx-xx), page 70
  23. GamePro, "September 1992" (US; 1992-xx-xx), page 126 (128)
  24. Joystick, "Novembre 1992" (FR; 1992-xx-xx), page 147
  25. Mean Machines Sega, "April 1993" (UK; 1993-03-26), page 48/49 (48)
  26. Player One, "Octobre 1992" (FR; 1992-10-10), page 90/91 (86)
  27. Sega Power, "June 1992" (UK; 1992-05-07), page 37
  28. Sega Pro, "April 1992" (UK; 1992-03-19), page 36/37 (36)
  29. Sega Force, "1/92" (SE; 1992-xx-xx), page 25
  30. Sega Force, "May 1992" (UK; 1992-04-16), page 72/73 (72)

Spider-Man games for Sega systems
Spider-Man: The Videogame (1991)
Sega Mega Drive
Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin (1991) | Spider-Man and the X-Men in Arcade's Revenge (1993) | Spider-Man and Venom: Maximum Carnage (1994) | Spider-Man: The Animated Series (1995) | Venom - Spider-Man: Separation Anxiety (1995)
Sega Master System
Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin (1991) | Spider-Man: Return of the Sinister Six (1993)
Sega Game Gear
Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin (1992) | Spider-Man: Return of the Sinister Six (1993) | Spider-Man and the X-Men in Arcade's Revenge (1994)
Sega Mega-CD
Spider-Man vs. The Kingpin (1993)
Sega 32X
Spider-Man: Web of Fire (1996)
Sega Dreamcast
Spider-Man (2000)