Spider-Man resonates with many gamers out there. Being a geeky, nerdy person can sometimes mean feeling a bit invisible, feeling like you’ve got a lack of power, but when Peter Parker becomes Spider-Man, it gives us all a sense of greatness. It’s been a long time since players fell in love with a Spider-Man game, with many touting Spider-Man 2 from 2004 being an all-time favorite(It is with us). Now that Insomniac’s Marvel’s Spider-Man has arrived, we might very well have a new favorite!
The combat in Marvel’s Spider-Man takes what we know and love about Spider-Man, his acrobatic ability and his gadgets, and couples it together with a focus on abilities. Players won’t need to remember dozens of different combos, instead, the combat gives players a toolkit of abilities to use, and it’s entirely up to them how to string it all together.
Punching enemies to knock them out is all good and well, but working some abilities into a brawl is even more rewarding. Players can use Spider-Man’s web abilities to incapacitate enemies, preventing them from attacking, and even using them as makeshift weapons. A webbed enemy can be swung around like a mace, knocking other mobsters to the ground or a tripmine gadget can be attached to one baddie which in turn sandwiches two enemies together!
Beyond just fighting with the goons, Spider-Man can also use the environment as a tool in combat. Trashcans, pallets, scaffolding, they all make for good weapons and can be seamlessly worked into any combat routine. It’s all up to the player how they wish to approach a situation.
Peter Parker wouldn’t be Spider-Man without his suit, and in Insomniac has done an exceptional job including a variety of red-and-blue, skin-tight spandex underoos to unlock. While some players will want to stick with the iconic sleek Spider-Man costume, there are those who will want to try out a few other famous and not so famous suits.
Take for instance the Noir Suit, this stealthy outfit grants the ability, Sound of Silence, which prevents enemies from calling for backup when alerted. This is an excellent option for players who want to stick with a stealth approach and don’t want to run the risk of attracting more attention if they get caught.
There is also the ‘80s-lookin’ Spider-Punk suit, with its totally wicked spikes along the head. This rockin’ suit blasts enemies with a sonic wave, knocking them off their feet. In fact, there are dozens of suits to collect and upgrade throughout the course of Marvel’s Spider-Man, so finding one that fits your play-style won’t be a challenge. You might find yourself with several favorites, changing up Peter’s look every few minutes.
Finally, it very well wouldn’t feel like a Spider-Man game without some absolutely phenomenal web-slinging action. Insomniac are renowned for their ability to create breathtaking open-world games that capitalize on movement (Sunset Overdrive being a choice example), and they have managed to create the best web-slinging experience yet.
The sense of speed, freedom, and rhythm of swinging through the busy streets of Manhattan hasn’t felt this good in a long time. Every tether to the side of a building is met with an immediate feedback of connectivity as Spider-Man leans into the anchor point and swings around under centripetal force, coming out the other side with even greater speed. This sense of speed is further emphasized by an incredible audio system, made better still with the Stealth 700 headset. The DTS™ 7.1 surround sound technology completely immerses you in the moment as skyscrapers, birds, and vehicles tear past Peter as he swings through the city.
Reflective windows, steel beams, and cars all blur past as the player is able to control – with incredible precision – where Spider-Man goes, reacting to the shifting environmental with a level of fluidity not before seen in a Spider-Man game. The moment-to-moment gameplay of Marvel’s Spider-Man perfectly captures the sense of the superhero experience. All these elements work together to create a real and immediate sense of power. In a single moment, players can go from soaring through the air to engaging in a fist fight with gangsters, and it all flows together superbly. Insomniac has done an astounding job of capturing the sense of freedom and power of Spider-Man. Have you had a chance to dive into Marvel’s Spider-Man yet?