The recent PlayStation Showcase may have turned out to be a bit of a damp squib, but if nothing else, it did, at the very least, sign off with a bang. Sony and Insomniac Games chose the upcoming Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 to be the show’s closer, offering up a meaty, excellent gameplay debut for the highly anticipated superhero sequel. Plenty was revealed, both in the gameplay demonstration as well as a PlayStation Blog article that was published shortly afterward, and here, we’re going to parse through all the key details that you should know about.
PETER AND MILES
Marvel’s Spider-Man 2’s announce trailer had already suggested quite strongly that both Peter Parker and Miles Morales would be playable protagonists in the game, and that’s now been officially confirmed. The sequel will feature both of them as playable Spider-Men, and Insomniac has said both will have a crucial role to play in the game. Some questions still remain unanswered though. For instance, will players be able to switch between both characters at will, or will that be baked into and determined by the game’s story? The switching between the two was automatic in the gameplay that was recently shown off, but whether that only applies to scripted sequences and if players will be able to swap freely in the open world remains to be seen.
This, of course, is something we’ve been waiting for as Spider-Man fans for a while. After teases throughout the first two games, Venom was confirmed to be involved in Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 in its reveal trailer, and during the recent gameplay showcase, we got to see Peter himself infected with the Symbiote. Yes, the iconic Black Suit is indeed in this game, and in addition to altering Peter’s appearance as the famour webslinger, the Symbiote suit will also bring with it completely new abilities. Speaking of which…
PETER’S NEW ABILITIES
In combat, when equipped with the Black Suit, Peter will be much stronger and significantly more aggressive, while he will also have plenty of new combat moves at his disposal. He will be able to use aggressive parries, and use extremely powerful webs that will slam into enemies with incredible force, sending them flying. Entirely new combat animations will show just how different Peter’s combat moves and abilities are while he’s wearing the Black Suit, which, of course, will also include completely new and specialized takedown attacks.
MILES’ NEW ABILITIES
It’s not just Pete who’ll have some new moves up his sleeve- Miles is also rolling up with new combat abilities, on top of the impressive moveset he already boasted in his own game. One such ability is called Thunder Burst, which will allow Miles to use his bioelectricity powers to unleash an electricity-infused ground pound attack that will deal area of effect damage. Additionally, he will also have a new Chain Lightning ability to play around with, which will do pretty much exactly what its name suggests. There’s also the Web Grabber, one of his new gadgets, which will grab enemies with webs (yes, it’s a pretty descriptive name) and pull them together to a single spot.
NEW TRAVERSAL MECHANICS
Traversal is a massive part of the experience in Insomniac’s Spidey games, so of course, that part of the gameplay is also receiving plenty of boosts in the upcoming sequel. For starters, Insomniac confirms that in general, the speed of movement will be significantly faster in the game than it was in its predecessors, courtesy of the PS5’s SSD. Meanwhile, a major new addition are the Web Wings, which are in-built wings that both heroes can deploy at anytime to be able to glide in the air. Miles and Peter will also be able to use wind tunnels scattered throughout New York City, which will allow them to rapidly glide through the air from point to point.
NEW STEALTH ABILITIES
While combat and traversal are obviously the core pillars of Insomniac’s Spider-Man games, stealth also plays an important role, and it, too, will enjoy some improvements in the upcoming sequel. One new addition that Insomniac has detailed is the Web Line, which will allow you to stick a web between any two points and traipse across it while you’re stealthing around up in the rafters. Players will also be able to use this gadget to get the drop on two enemies at the same time for a double takedown.
With Peter and Miles both being playable in the game and both having their own unique abilities, how will progression be handled? Quite thoroughly, it would seem. Insomniac says both Peter and Miles will have their own individual skill trees for their particular sets of abilities. Meanwhile, on top of that, a shared skill tree for both characters will also be included, which will offer parallel upgrades for both.
Marvel’s Spider-Man and Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales were both set in New York City and used the same map (with some minor variations), and while one might ordinarily argue that that’s far from ideal, the NYC setting is, of course, such a crucial part of any Spider-Man story (well, for the most part). And sure enough, Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 is also set in New York City, and it does bring over the map that was used in its predecessors. It will, however, also add new areas. What the extent of these additions will be remains to be seen, but Insomniac has confirmed that the East River will be one of the new areas featured in the sequel.
KRAVEN THE HUNTER
Though Marvel’s Spider-Man 2’s reveal trailer in 2021 did not explicitly confirm Kraven the Hunter’s involvement, it did nonetheless make it quite obvious that the villain would have a role to play in the story. That’s now been officially confirmed. Him and his followers, a new faction known as Kraven’s Hunters, will travel to New York City at the outset of what they refer to as the Great Hunt, which will see them crossing paths with NYC’s most powerful individuals, including not only the two Spider-Men, but also a number of villains- which, incidentally, brings us to our next point.
Curt Connors, aka The Lizard, was briefly mentioned and glimpsed in Marvel’s Spider-Man and Miles Morales, and as many predicted, he will now have a much more prominent role to play in the sequel. He was massively involved in the gameplay section that we recently saw, which saw Kraven and his Hunters in pursuit of him for reasons unknown. That, however, is something that Peter and Miles are apparently trying to stop. Exactly what role the Lizard will play in the story remains to be seen, but we sure are excited to see how he’s portrayed in the game.
As mentioned earlier, the PS5’s SSD has brought about a significant increase in traversal and movement in Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, but players can look forward to other tech upgrades beyond that as well. This is, after all, a PS5 exclusive. Insomniac says the open world is richer, denser, and more active, and features improved details of all manner, from particles and textures to lighting, shadows, reflections, and more. Meanwhile, 3D spatial audio is also confirmed, while the game will also feature implementation of the DualSense’s haptic feedback and adaptive triggers.
Sadly, Marvel’s Spider-Man 2’s recent gameplay reveal wasn’t accompanied by a release date announcement, with Sony and Insomniac still sticking by the Fall 2023 window that was announced earlier in the year. Insomniac has, however, said that the game is still on track for the aforementioned release window, and that a specific launch date will be announced “soon”. How soon “soon” will be remains to be seen.