Insomniac Games lifts the veil on Spider-Man 2 further, as a new round of Spider-Man 2 previews are out there to dip into. I haven’t had the chance to play it yet, but I’m already salivating at the enhancements the next Spidey adventure is promising. Although to be completely honest, I’m looking forward to doing one of the best activities that the first game encouraged. Nothing.
I don’t mean just leaving the menu screen idle, of course. I mean leaving missions behind, whether they are main quests or side objectives. There is a simplicity to purely existing in Insomniac’s depiction of New York City. The continuous drone of traffic rises from the city streets, creating a comforting wave of ambient sound. John Paesano’s stirring score holds its own against Danny Elfman or Hans Zimmer’s themes.
An odd car horn beeps to interrupt it, but it doesn’t stop me from appreciating the beauty on display as the sun beats down on the skyline. Marvel’s Spider-Man is hands down one of the best open world games on PS5, and not enough praise can be given toward Insomniac’s fidelity wizardry.
The greatest pleasure in both the first game and the Miles Morales spin-off is swinging around the city. You could say this is doing something but like any open-world game worth one’s salt, immersion drives the experience home harder. Basking in the gusts of wind that pass by Peter or Miles’ body as they pierce the sky with a powerful thwip of a web. It’s amplified by the subtle tension of the haptics and triggers of the DualShock 5 in the current games, signaling the weight it takes to keep our heroes suspended above the streets below.
Seeing the brand-new web wings in action is the stuff of dreams, something I thought would only remain accurately displayed on the pages of Marvel Comics or briefly on screen in the MCU. Yet, Insomniac appears to have cracked the code with a Just Cause-style approach to getting our Spider-Men across the city faster. I’m sure I’m not alone when I say that I can see myself spending hours soaring above skyscrapers or trying to pull off exceptionally dangerous feats with it.
The grandiose expansion of the world through the Spider-Man 2 map has my imagination working overtime, too. Sifting through the easter eggs in the first game made NYC feel alive, and hinted toward a wider Marvel universe that was just out of a grasp. Now there is a lot more New York City to uncover, the possibilities of who resides in it are thrilling. Insomniac knows this too.
Speaking on the tricky path of licensing, project director Jeannette Lee explains to IGN that “we also get to put little Marvel Easter eggs in the city that maybe don’t exist in real life.” Asked whether we will see any other special Spider-Man 2 characters hanging around, Lee says that “you’ll have to play [and see].”
However, director of core technology Mike Fitzgerald adds players will “have to explore New York City and Marvel’s New York […] adding Brooklyn and Queens added a lot of new opportunity to add more Marvel stuff.”
This is a world I can’t wait to just live in and see what happens around me. With the added prospect of seeing Miles or Peter appear randomly throughout the city, it adds a fantastic imaginative aspect that extends the game’s world further. What are these characters doing in their spare time? What else can I find Peter or Miles doing during my travels? I don’t know yet, but as the Spider-Man 2 release date approaches, I’m ready to be caught up in Insomniac Games’ web.