Insomniac Games’ Spider-Man nailed what other games associated with the web-slinger couldn’t. By distilling equal amounts of charm, adventure, action, and to some extent, early adulthood drama, the game became one of the best titles on the PS4 platform. Spider-Man easily fulfilled players’ fantasy of swinging around the metropolis, all while fighting criminals and saving the day.
Now, a new web-slinger has risen to take up the mantle and save Harlem. Question is, would he live up to everyone’s expectations?
Spider-Man: Miles Morales directly follows the events of its 2018 predecessor and the DLCs that came after the main game. Thanks to a quick recap, it was established that Miles had been training under Peter Parker’s tutelage to help him put his newfound spider powers to great use. After Pete departs to join Mary Jane on a news assignment abroad, it is up to Miles to unravel the mystery behind an impending war between energy conglomerate Roxxon Corporation and a high-tech criminal resistance army called the Underground.
The game did a great job of showcasing our new protagonist’s struggles early in the game. He is clearly a younger, inexperienced hero, and his clumsiness is reflected in the way he zips around the environment taking out thugs with a flurry of fists and kicks. His doubts as a superhero will serve as the foundation of the narrative, as the player controls Miles throughout his entire adventure to see him grow into the web-slinger he is destined to become.
While the game is brief and shorter than its predecessor (you can finish the game in 10 hours if you’re not the exploring type), it manages to develop a number of characters and their interconnecting relationships beautifully. Miles will banter with his closest friend Ganke, as they develop a “Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man” smartphone app to help out local residents. Or, he’ll work alongside his mum, as she seeks to be elected as a representative of Harlem.
The strongest bond is between Miles and Phin, two friends who have grown apart over the years, only to discover demons they both hold upon reconnecting. Giving such relationships additional room to grow would have been welcome, but Insomniac does a stellar job given the restraints it is seemingly working under.
Like I said earlier, Miles’ moveset differs greatly in a sense that he fights much clumsier and raw than his mentor, and Insomniac translated that smoothly into the game’s combat system. Unlike Pete, Miles can blast his enemies to pieces and launch them with bursts of bio-electricity, which can be used for a number of applications such as overloading generators or linking circuits in fascinating puzzles.
Similar to his comic book iteration, Miles can also employ a camouflage skill to hide himself from enemy sight for a short duration of time. Players can exploit this mechanic to carry out stealth takedowns from the air, or escape from losing battles.
Much like the previous game, you’re slowly but surely given a selection of side activities to complete across Manhattan, which help provide points for upgrades and flesh out the otherwise limited campaign. Miles can uncover monuments to his relationship with Phin, or record urban sounds to help piece together a makeshift mixtape. Of course, you’ll also find evil bases to conquer and procedural crimes to prevent while swinging about the place.
It’s an infectious cycle of content that I was spurred onto complete simply because navigating Manhattan is so much fun with superhero acrobatics. While it feels bad that some of the side-missions feel generic at best, they aren’t detrimental to the overall experience the game offers, regardless of how brief it is.
While the original game is set primarily in Manhattan, Spider-Man: Miles Morales spends a huge chunk of its time in Harlem, with the new setting exuding a multi-cultural vibe unlike its predecessor. In a way, it effectively reflects Miles’ heritage, having been raised by an African-American father and a Puerto Rican mother.
The jazz and R&B music in the background even blends perfectly into the game’s intended vibe, and in essence, deviates Spider-Man: Miles Morales completely from its predecessor. Miles’ passion for music, street fashion, and science bleeds into the overall aesthetic, which is positively bursting with colours as Christmas lights reflect off the dark winter streets – a stark contrast to the conflict inbound in the latter stages of the game.
In conclusion, Spider-Man: Miles Morales has surpassed its predecessor’s bar in more ways than one. Its brief, yet compelling story, raw combat system, and a slew of new features make the game a great experience to boot.
Our Privacy Commitment
TV5 Network Inc. values and respects your right to privacy. We are committed to safeguarding your personal data in compliance with Republic Act No. 10173 or the Data Privacy Act of 2012 and its Implementing Rules and Regulations.
Why do we collect your personal information (as applicable)?
We collect and maintain basic information about you as users of TV5 sites for the following purposes:
Where do we get your personal information?
There are several ways we collect your personal information.
Information that you personally provided.
Most of the personal information we have are those that you have provided us when you:
Information we collect during your engagement with us
We also collect information as you use our products and services, like:
Information we collect from other sources
We also collect your personal information through other activities such as our market research initiatives, when you visit and use our websites and mobile apps, and from our subsidiaries, affiliates, and third-party business partners to whom you have given consent to share your information to us.
When do we disclose personal information?
There are circumstances when we are required to share some of the information you have provided us. In these cases, we ensure that your personal information will be disclosed on a confidential manner, through secure channels that is in compliance with the Data Privacy Act and other privacy laws.
In some instances, we may be required to disclose your personal information to our agents, subsidiaries, affiliates, business partners and other third-party agencies and service providers as part of our regular business operations and for the provision of our programs and services. This means we might share your information with:
How we protect your personal information
We also put in effect the following safeguards:
TV5 will not collect, use, or disclose your personal information for any purpose other than those identified in this Commitment, your Service Agreement or our Terms of Service, and any other purpose that you may have given your consent for.
For greater clarity, unless you provide specific consent, we shall not:
What are your choices?
You are given certain rights in relation to your personal data under the Data Privacy Act. We would like to ensure that we have your consent to continue to collect, use, and disclose your personal information for the purposes that we have identified. We want you to know that you do have choices and can object or withdraw your consent and/or edit your consent preferences at any time.
If you wish to have access to your personal information in our records; or you think that such personal information we have of you is incomplete, not up-to-date, or otherwise inaccurate, you may get in touch with our Data Privacy Officer through the contact details provided below. In some instances, we may request for supporting documents or proof before we effect any requested changes to your personal information.
Data Protection Officer
TV5 Network Inc.
Reliance corner Sheridan Streets
What happens when there are changes in our Policy?
You will always be provided notice if these changes are significant and, if we are required by law, we will ensure to obtain your updated consent.