Marvel’s Spider-Man: The Insomniac Games trepamuros version has been with us for a few days. Are we facing the Ultimate Spider-Man video game? We have toured the streets of New York for thirty hours and we tell you our verdict.
The gunplay of Call of Duty, the throws of the ax Leviathan of Kratos in God of War or the jump in Super Meat Boy. In video games, refined and satisfying mechanics can make a difference and become the core of an experience that grows and expands around you. With Marvel’s Spider-Man, Insomniac Games has achieved that. Twice.
Marvel’s Spider-man game review
The first of these mechanics, essential and inherent to one of the most popular superheroes in the world, is their movement, swinging between buildings based on throwing spider webs and propelling thanks to them.
It is something basic and that gives meaning to the rest of the experience: that the way to move around New York is so satisfying and fun per se makes the whole something much better from its very base.
Just by using a couple of buttons and hitting dozens of animations, something as mundane as going from here to there becomes the first way to make us feel Spider-Man; the tightness of his control makes us move like him after just five minutes of play and, from there, everything goes up.
The second pillar on which Marvel’s Spider-Man stands is its combat, of course: clearly inheriting the essence of the system created and popularized by Rocksteady in his saga Batman Arkham , Insomniac goes here a step further; in fact, it is a system that fits better with Spidey than with the Dark Knight and what in one are somewhat forced tumbling and exaggerated slides to chain hits, here it is resolved with a spider’s web, going one step further in fluency and dynamism.
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In this way, each confrontation is organic, comfortable, direct and, above all, fun. Even in the early stages, where we do not have many of the gadgets and improvements can unlock, pounding enemies lengthening the combo while trying not to be hit is a joy.
With just three buttons we will have total and absolute control of Spidey, executing choreographies that the superhero films and comics would like for themselves. Maybe that’s the secret of Marvel’s Spider-Man, getting a lot with very little.
And supporting, while enhancing, these pillars find the progression system : rising level we can unlock skills that, is not something that always happens, often have a significant influence on the gameplay and our character and, on the other hand, complete secondary tasks will allow us to buy and improve different costumes and gadgets that go from a mine that, after being activated, attaches the target to the nearest wall or object to electrical networks or a more than useful cobweb bomb. Again, a successful additional layer.
But beyond the purely mechanical, what does Marvel’s Spider-Man have to say? Here Insomniac Games creates its own version of Peter Parker and his superheroic alter ego: far from the adolescent version that we usually see on the big screen, we find a 23-year-old Pete who has been wearing his tights daily for eight years.
In this way, little by little we will verify that Spider-Man has already faced the vast majority of great villains of his franchise, which has had its ups and downs in its relationship with Mary Jane Watson and that, in short, has long been a part of the world. Thus, the experience is far from being a history of origins or an initiatory journey.
So much so that the game brings together an extensive roster of the greatest villains that treasures usually face in vignettes and movies, including the Mr. Negative that we had all seen a thousand and one times in the trailers (which is why it is difficult to understand the decision to give ceremony and uncertainty to unveil its true and obvious identity), such as Scorpion, Vulture or Shocker although, yes, the distribution of their respective confrontations throughout history is somewhat unbalanced.
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But there is much beyond the villains: the aforementioned Mary Jane Watson is joined by other secondary as the always friendly Aunt May, the effective police Yuri Watanabe or Miles Morales who has already been Spider-Man in the comics. And also an Otto Octavius who, in a pleasant and welcome turn in the lore of the hero, will exercise the role of mentor and idol in scientific work.
Between one and the other, they are weaving a story that is always followed with interest and that, especially in its final stretch, offers missions that waste epic and freneticism. We do not talk about the definitive history of Spider-Man but that, despite some ups and downs, of an adventure more than satisfactory.
It is a pity, therefore, that the few shortcomings of the experience are so palpable and clearly identifiable : I speak of the minigames used for various purposes (deactivating bombs, identifying chemical substances, among them) and, above all, of missions focused on the stealth in which we control other characters such as, for the most part, Mary Jane.
Being fair, neither is eminently negative but, for lack of better or more varied ideas, its repetition and, especially in the case of missions, a tendency to slow down and even frustrate moderately muddy the experience.
Finally, if one thing in common is the hero, the villains, the luxury side and the scenarios to go are his great recreation: Marvel’s Spider-Man is a video game that surprises technically and does so for several reasons; the first, that a video game of its size and level of detail moves perfectly in a firm 30fps and 1080p on a PS4 Slim.
The second, the very detailed and careful modeling, animations, textures, lighting or particle effects that, together, give us a fantastic recreation of the wide array of characters and the city of New York and some video scenes that little or nothing has that envy any other video game in the market.