This review is spoiler free.
I haven’t done a game review in an age, and I’ll be honest with you, they’re not going to be very frequent and they’ll always be an afterthought for this website. I always intended to be a Film/TV reviewer primarily and that won’t change, but still, I will do the odd Game Review from time to time! So today I thought I’d do a review of one of my favourite games of 2018, Marvel’s Spider-Man, created by the fantastic team at Insomniac Games.
Single player games seem to be on the rise again, although the market appears to be dominated by large multiplayer games and battle royales, there is still a large audience that just wants a good story and something they can experience on their own, Spider-Man is the perfect game for that audience.
If you’ve ever played any of the Arkham series, then you’ll have a good idea of how this game will work, it’s very similar in style to the DC series and thankfully, it translates seamlessly into the world of Spidey, it’s almost like the Arkham gameplay mechanics were designed with the intention to be used for a Spidey game one day, that’s how perfect it is. The combat is fluid and never once gets boring, with a huge array of combos and different moves and skills to use, you could spend hours just beating up goons and exploring the many ways in which you can defeat them, it’s incredibly good fun.
Insomniac Games have perfected the art of web-slinging as well, taking the best of previous Spidey games and improving upon it, the result is a web-slinging mechanic that takes some getting used to, but once you master it, you’ll be swinging through New York with such grace and fluidity that you will feel like the web-crawler himself. Although there is the option to fast travel, you’ll often not even be tempted to do this as swinging around New York never seems to get old. You even gain the ability to do tricks while you’re swinging later on in the game, although it’s not an important ability to have, it just adds that little bit more to the experience and really helps to make everything feel more authentic.
In terms of story, this is one of the finest Spidey stories ever told, arguably beating any of the films that we have seen over the last couple of decades. The decision to have an established, experienced Peter Parker as the protagonist is a smart choice, we’ve seen enough origin stories to last a lifetime so to be able to go straight in with a main character who is more experienced than the player at this point was refreshing, it also opens the window for a huge number of easter eggs to discover as you learn things about what happens in the Spidey’s early career, again, these aren’t compulsory, but they just flesh out the story and this world in such a way that you’ll probably find yourself going to find all of Peter’s old backpacks before you’ve even really begun the story missions. All of the characters are likeable, you’re invested in their tales and there are twists and turns aplenty through the roughly 20-hour story, the climax is extremely emotional and it was probably one of the most powerful stories I’ve played in a game since The Last of Us, that’s how good it is.
The creative control that Insomniac Games had over this franchise really benefits the overall experience, as it takes plenty of well known and established characters that we already know, but it makes little tweaks and changes to them that make them all feel fresh and original. There’s nothing that links it in to any previous iterations of the franchise and that is definitely a pro, and the end result is one of the strongest takes on the world of Spidey that I’ve ever seen. I can’t wait for the inevitable sequel!
I can’t say enough good things about this game, it’s absolutely fantastic. It’s immense fun from start to finish and you’ll likely keep playing after the main campaign to get that coveted Platinum Trophy, which is definitely achievable. As well as this, there are three DLC packages that expand the story, although they’re not as strong as the main story, they’re still good fun and well worth getting once you’ve done everything there is to do in the main game.
If you’re still at a point where you haven’t played this game yet, then what are you doing?! Get out there and play it. You won’t regret it.
I give Marvel’s Spider-Man a 9/10.