Insomniac Games is currently gearing its release marketing cycle for Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 – and that means they’re finally letting loose more details about the upcoming blockbuster. In recent weeks, the developer has given a range of interviews to games media outlets, with each revealing new tidbits.
The biggest reveals relate to the joint journey of Peter Parker and Miles Morales, and the impressive scope of their adventure. As Insomniac revealed to multiple outlets, Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 is twice the size of its predecessor, with a much larger open world to explore. To contend with this, players will have access to new traversal abilities – like gliding through the air.
‘Number one thing for us on the gameplay side is the speed of traversal that we’re able to achieve right now,’ Ryan Smith, Game Director told Press Start Australia. ‘It of course leverages [faster loading speeds on the PlayStation 5], but it’s a lot more seamless for the player, so that you can go much faster … whether it be our core swinging experience that we always have, or the web wings and the wind tunnels that go with them, that allow us to build up that speed, maintain and push that speed for the player.’
Smith also enthused about the game’s ‘super slingshot’ ability, which allows Peter and Miles to propel themselves forward in quick movements.
Per Insomniac, Peter and Miles will have their own playable stories buoyed by their new exploration abilities, but you can switch between heroes as you’re travelling through the open world – which includes the New York Boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens.
‘In the open world, you’ll have more flexibility to switch between the two heroes,’ Brian Intihar, Creative Director told Press Start. ‘We’ll have content made for Peter, content made for Miles, content that either one can play and with a simple quick button switch you can take control and go around the world.’
Beyond wider traversal capabilities, Insomniac has also revealed an array of new combat abilities tied specifically to Peter’s new Venom suit. Those familiar with the comics will know the Venom suit is an alien parasite that makes wearers more prone to violence – and Insomniac plans to double down on this effect.
Speaking to Eurogamer, Intihar confirmed Peter’s use of the Venom suit will parallel addiction, much like the original comics that inspired the game. While the ‘Alien Costume Saga’ been adapted many times, including in Spider-Man 3 (film), Insomniac believes its version will be significantly darker, and treated ‘very seriously’.
‘It’s about really playing into those themes of addiction, how that can impact someone’s personality, impact the people around them, and you’re going to see that it’s not just how it’s impacting Peter on his own, but also those close to him,’ Intihar said.
In the game, Peter will have a far more aggressive combat style, which includes the ability to lift multiple people in the air, and slam them into the ground. Air combat will also be improved with the suit, as players will be able to control their enemies with multiple tentacles.
Per Intihar, the depiction of the Venom suit has been inspired directly by the classic comics, and also the recent Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman comics run, which introduced new powers (most significantly, wings) and deep lore for Venom.
Miles will seemingly not get the benefit of the Venom suit – but he will have new chain lighting and ‘thunderbust’ abilities that allow for more hard-hitting, electricity-powered combat.
Both heroes will have an individual skill tree, allowing them to level up and improve these new and returning abilities. A shared skill tree will also be available, presumably allowing Peter and Miles to grow together as they protect New York from threats like Kraven the Hunter and The Lizard.
This shared character arc forms the basis of Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, which will spotlight themes of growth and morality in an increasingly hostile world. Players will get to explore this journey for themselves when the game launches for PlayStation 5 in Q3 2023.