So a lot of times on here I talk about current issues in gaming or try to write a thinkpiece on something relevant that’s happened within the last week or so. Today I’m going to take a slight deviation from that norm and instead use my writing time to do things a little bit differently. Instead of a long-form piece on a recent event or game release, I’m going to geek out for a bit over something I’m really, really excited for.
Spider-Man is coming to the PS4 on September 7th this year.
And holy bananaballs it looks amazing – no pun intended – okay, pun kinda intended.
The game was first announced at E3 2016 with this trailer. It came out of nowhere – nobody was expecting a Spider-Man game, much less a game developed by such a prominent (and mostly beloved) developer like Insomniac Games. In retrospect they announced the game a little bit too early (since it will be over two years since its debut and will end up having trailers at three E3s, most likely, counting 2017’s gameplay trailer and what will probably be a final look trailer before the game’s release) but at the time it nearly stole the show.
A bit of history – Insomniac Games has been one of my personal favorite developers since the PS2 era. They originally developed the Spyro games on PS1 (which I never played – but there’s been pretty big hints that a remastered Spyro collection will be coming to the PS4 later this year) but the game series they really hooked me with was the Ratchet & Clank series. Ratchet & Clank is a super cartoony, somewhat cheesy, but absolutely fun game where you control Ratchet, an alien creature known as a Lombax, and his buddy robot Clank. The selling point of the series is a mishmash of crazy weapons with a little bit of platforming. The creativity of the weapons was what kept bringing me back – from the Sheepinator (which turned enemies into sheep) to the Plasma Whip (a surprisingly simple melee weapon that’s a ton of fun to use), from the Groovitron (make all your enemies disco dance) to the RYNO (a “destroy everything you can see” BFG-like weapon that always reappears even bigger and badder in each sequel – oh, and RYNO stands for “Rip Ya a New One”) all the weapons in Ratchet & Clank were interesting over bland choices like “shotgun” and “assault rifle.”
They’ve done other well-regarded games as well – Sunset Overdrive was a small hit on the XBox One and the Resistance series on PS3 did decently. Fuse was a game that I had high hopes for but it was ultimately diluted into blandness by focus testing – see the original Overstrike trailer versus the final gameplay. Overall, though, Insomniac has a wonderful pedigree of fun, complete games that often have humor and bright visuals.
So when one of my favorite developers was announced to be developing a game featuring my favorite superhero, I was obviously overjoyed. I’ve played a few Spider-Man games here and there, but none really captured the friendly, neighborhood Spider-Man to my expectations. But Insomniac’s game looks to be everything I’ve wanted from a Spider-Man game and more. It’s already being compared to what Rocksteady did for Batman with the Arkham franchise.
Just look at this.
I mean, look.
It’s….it’s so beautiful.
I can’t wait to play this game. I know a few details of who the villains will be, but the story in general has been kept mostly under wraps and I’m willing to go into the game knowing as little as possible – so don’t expect in-depth coverage from me about this until the game comes out. I’m even more excited because you’ll be able to play as both Peter and MJ in the game, and not just Peter as Spider-Man either, you’ll get to be actual daily life Peter. As Spider-Man, you’ll also be able to interact with civilians by dropping in on them and high-fiving or taking selfies with them.
It seems like it’s going to be an absolute blast. I can’t wait – this is definitely my most anticipated game for 2018. See you all in September.