Continuing the story from the previous Marvel’s Spider-Man, one year later, Miles Morales, who was bitten by an experimental spider, is now starting to play his role as the new Spider-Man. Fortunately, not having to learn everything on his own, he is now scouted by Peter Parker, who has eaten salt acid to explore this sacrificial mission. At one point, Miles Morales now had to take on this responsibility alone.
Accompanying Mary Jane who was out of town, Peter Parker left responsibility for the safety of the city in the hands of Miles Morales who he thought was ready. So as can be predicted, it didn’t take long for a new threat to emerge and test Miles Morales. The process he undertook at Roxxon Plaza, one of the largest energy companies, had just introduced a new resource called Nuform, an organization affiliated with an organization called Underground.
Undeground, who is known to be led by a masked figure named Tinker, seems to have the ambition to master Nuform with mysterious motivations. Now it is Miles Morales’ job to find out what they really want and prevent a big war between Underground and Roxxon which incidentally, is also equipped with their own special forces.
So, can Miles be able to solve the big problem that is threatening this city? Who is actually the figure behind the Tinkerer? What threats will he have to face as a superhero who has just assumed his own responsibilities? All the answers to these questions you will be able to get by playing Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales.
The power of the Playstation 5
The decision to wait for the official Playstation 5 release before trying out Miles Morales in person, could be one of the best decisions we have made. Although we believe, if we take a look at the previous Spider-Man series, Insominac Games will do a fantastic job with the Playstation 4 version, it does look even more beautiful and dazzling in the next-gen version. That despite the fact that this machine is still coming, Insomnia seems to already have an idea what they can offer with this new adventure from Miles Morales. An experience that in the end is not only fun, but also a feast for the eyes.
Swinging through the tall buildings mostly filled with glass, seeing the reflection of Miles in the distance, creates a game atmosphere that is more dramatic and accurate at the same time. Moreover, this cut-scene, lighting or prominent reflection ends up being a complement that deserves appreciation. Wrapped in high-definition textures, especially for model characters and clothes, you’ll fall in love with it from the first sight.
Your game setting is not that different from what Marvel Spider-Man has to offer before. You’re still swinging in the same city, with a layout that Spider-Man lovers will be familiar with. Fortunately, the taste is more refreshing from the new characters who have an important role in Miles and the city timeline that is busy welcoming the end of the year. Winter makes the snow fall and sometimes, the city streets gleam a little because of the thin layer on top, giving birth to reflections that again make the ray-tracing feature shine. The characters that accompany Miles’ journey also offer a different dynamic.
If there’s one side of the presentation that makes Miles and Peter feel so different, it’s the choice of music that follows their stunt and journey as Spider-Man. Although it is not clearly filled with rap songs, for example, there is a strong impression of “black music” following the actions of Miles, who is indeed a black teenager. You see how music accompanies almost every activity he does, with a headset playing an important role. Visualization like this is enough to give a clear and strong picture that Miles and Peter come from two different backgrounds, but united because of the same mission.
The presentation offered by Miles Morales on the Playstation 5 version is indeed charming. Who would have thought that the presence of ray-tracing, which is actually “just” a more accurate reflection and light visualization technology could help build an exploratory atmosphere that looks and feels fantastic. Sprinting vertically up a skyscraper filled with so much glass, swinging through it, accompanied by dramatic winter light for a well-deserved next-gen approach, following the release of the Playstation 5.
Not Peter Parker
We are no longer one, but two Spider-Man, we are among the gamers who are worried about the narrative that Insomniac is trying to push with the release of this one game. Miles is not a “new” character and has existed for a long time in the Marvel comics world, with his popularity skyrocketing after the success of the CGI film – Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. But comics and movies are passive experiences. In an interactive video game, Insomniac Games has a tough task to make Miles Morales appear as a unique and different Spider-Man character, both in terms of story, characters, and finally gameplay. They needed to make Peter and Miles appear as two distinct entities, even from the thrill of using them.
The good news? They do the job well. From the side of the story, you can feel the difference in character between Miles Morales who is present as a “newcomer” to the world of superheroes and Peter, who has been active for years. The story moves from the figure of Spider-Man from Miles who is still full of doubts and questions, but on the other hand, leaves little self-confidence. It was a good decision not to have him jump right into the fight against so many super-villain characters like Peter Parker. The main theme of Miles Morales’s story is more focused on trying to understand his role as a new superhero, understanding what tough challenges he must go through, and then fostering a sense of responsibility for the city he loves. This is a more personal approach.
Meanwhile, in terms of gameplay, there are many details that have been injected by Insomniac to make Miles’ identity more “shine”. From things as small as the swinging style for example. Although the control scheme is similar to Peter Parker’s version, you’ll find that most of Miles’s swinging animation feels more “youthful”. That he took the time to have a little fun with his spider ability, with a variety of jumping and swinging styles, from looking back, letting himself in free fall, to other attractions. While swinging, Miles also has a favorite podcast that he listens to regularly, in contrast to Peter’s obsession with J. Jonah Jameson. Any other extra details? Although Miles and Peter are actively chattering their jokes, you can feel a different style slide from the two.
Given that Miles was bitten by a different type of spider from Peter Parker, this also manifested itself in the form of his own unique fighting abilities. That unlike Peter who relies more on gadgets to subdue his enemies quickly, Miles is strengthened by “Venom Powers”, an ability to trigger bio-electric currents which, if diverted to certain parts of his body, will make him stronger and tougher. How tough? Enough to make his fists leave pretty fatal damage to big enemy types like Rhino. This ability also allows Miles to be able to manipulate various objects where electricity plays an important role.
One thing that is interesting about the figure of Miles Morales and Peter Parker, besides both of them now being spider humans, is how they love science and make it a base to support their actions to eradicate crime. But interestingly, unlike Peter Parker where this aspect was highlighted from the start where he served as a researcher with Dr. Oct, that aspect is not how “shining” at Miles Morales. You understand that at least Miles really loves science, which is also shown through his achievements during school. But you won’t find out how he will get into the puzzle or the problem that will test his abilities.
Executing it fantastically is the perfect sentence to describe what Insomniac Games has accomplished with Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales. Although it is positioned as an adventure on a smaller scale, the density of stories, characters, and interactive experiences presented has succeeded in making Miles Morales “shine” in the capacity it should be. It didn’t take long to understand Miles’ struggle to appear like a superhero who should be like his mentor, Peter Parker. Everything is passed through a myriad of problems that not only threaten the city, but also create personal conflicts. Even cooler? Insomniac is also able to translate these differences to the gameplay side.
With his short experience, there isn’t much to complain about Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales, especially when we talk about how he appears as a game that can show off what the Playstation 5 can do as an early generation console. If there is one thing we have to complain about, then the overpowered power of Venom Jump is something worth complaining about. Even though in the end he is quite evenly matched because of the large number of enemies you have to fight, this one power can be said to be too effective not to continue to be used at every opportunity.
With all this appeal, especially for those of you who have tasted Marvel’s Spider-Man before, there’s no reason not to glance at Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales. The attractiveness is on a higher level if you enjoy it on the Playstation 5, where you have the opportunity to enjoy it in a definitive capacity that is not only fun, but also a feast for the eyes. This is a new generation of superheroes on a new generation platform!