Marvel’s ‘Spider-Man 2’ elevates comic book gaming

These Spider-Men play through new frontiers on the PlayStation 5. (PROVIDED/SONY)

“Marvel’s Spider-Man 2” released Oct. 20 exclusively to the PlayStation 5 console, and Insomniac Games proves once again that Marvel’s flagship hero is the perfect protagonist for a video game.

“Spider-Man 2” delivers on many accounts, but the biggest accomplishment of this game is its story. Insomniac Games, the developer of “Spider-Man 2,” does a brilliant job of blending the two Spider-Men stories together in an interesting and compelling way. Seeing Peter Parker have to navigate life without his Aunt May, and Miles Morales learning to swing just as he’s about to go into college makes for the perfect set-up for the two stories that are followed throughout this game.

Beyond just the story, the gameplay is phenomenal. In an almost unthinkable way, Insomniac developed a wonderful combat system, blowing the first games out of the water and even rivaling the combat which appeared in the latter entries of the “Batman: Arkham” series. “Spider-Man 2” takes everything that was beloved about the first game and enhances it. With new abilities such as the symbiote suit, or many may know it as the villain turned anti-hero Venom, as well as the ability to glide using the “web-wings,” there’s several new additions to the series that add to a more interesting and fun experience.

Another wonderful thing about the game is the ability to choose between Spider-Men. Having the option to play as Peter Parker or Miles Morales and explore the individualized missions for those heroes allows for a more interactive experience for the player, and doesn’t make you feel bogged down by being forced to play as one or the other.

The game also takes full advantage of the next-gen software that it’s operating on. Gone are the days of long loading screens and boring fast travel animations. Now, all it takes is the push of a button and you’ve fast traveled the entirety of the map with zero load time. While that’s great and all, the game is about Spider-Man after all, and who would he be without the swinging? And that is arguably the most fun part of the game. Swinging high above the streets of New York at speeds so fast you’re likely to lose control on the first few adventures around the city, but as you start to learn more about the controls you’ll never want to stop web-swinging through the city.

And that’s what this game does best, it doesn’t make you want to stop playing. Not once will you actually want to put the controller down and that’s the sign of a great video game. Beyond just having a wonderful story and being a technical marvel, the game genuinely does make you feel like you are in the action. It makes you feel like you’re swinging, like you’re fighting, like you’re experiencing the hardships of our two Spider-Men. Ultimately the game makes you feel like Spider-Man. The game makes you love Spider-Man, and that’s all you can ask for with comic-book media. Whether it be a game, movie, or TV show, it’s the best feeling when you’re watching or playing your favorite superhero and you think, “This is why I love comic books.”

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