The Westfield Voice

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The Westfield Voice

The Westfield Voice

Spider-Man PS4 Review


Police reports are flying in and my next mission is displayed for me to start. New York City could be at stake, and Wilson Fisk is waiting for me. Instead of putting a stop to it, I spend an entire hour of my life simply swinging around New York, flying across roof tops and barely missing the ground as traffic goes by. Throughout my roughly twenty-hour play through, swinging around the city never got old. The more I played, the more the game revealed its potential, even in something as simple as movement. Every facet of Spider-Man is superb, and I was truly captivated by the perfect Spider-Man experience that I found myself in.

     The Peter Parker in this game is relatively older. He has been Spider-Man for eight years, and that experience is apparent both in the gameplay and the story. Peter has already encountered many of his long-time villains, multiple times. They have been doing the back and forth jail game for years, but this time Spider-Man makes a move to put the Kingpin of the city away for good. Spider-Man then must handle a city that no longer has a single organized crime lord, resulting in utter chaos. 

     The game starts, Peter puts on his suit, and he jumps out the window. The player immediately takes control, and the adventure begins. Moving around New York is the first thing the player attempts, and again, I can’t stress enough how well done the movement system in Spider-Man is. There is an entire skill line devoted to traversal around the city, allowing the player to soar through New York City with incredible momentum. One skill even lets you do numerous flips in the air as you launch yourself for additional experience. 

As I webbed around the city, it was impossible to ignore the sheer amount of detail that was in the fictional, yet breathtaking New York. Every New York City landmark that comes to mind is present. Places like Times Square and the Empire State Building are accompanied by Marvel landmarks like the Avengers Tower. Countless locations come together to form a lived-in and immersive city for Spider-Man to sling around. In the city that never sleeps, there is also a constant flow of crime, traffic, and citizens, some of which Spider-Man can interact with. Each small addition in the game world go a long way in creating that storied friendly neighborhood for Spider-Man to patrol.

Spider-Man PS4’s New York City is also host to what I believe is one of the Best Spider-Man narratives around. The story took a deeper look at the personal relationships that Peter Parker has, the reasoning behind many villains, and what it really means to be Spider-Man. If done wrong, having the player control the person behind the mask can be a detriment to pacing and gameplay. Peter Parker had a lot of screen time in this game, and I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed those scenes. The player becomes more attached to Spider-Man as a person when we experience his conversations with Aunt May, his complicated relationship with Mary Jane, and his mentoring from Dr. Octavius. As a result, I became more concerned with Peter when he was just the wise-cracking superhero. I was engrossed in the fantastic plot line and dialogue that the game offered, and I was left both torn and excited by the end.

The actual gameplay, the combat, is yet another feature that had me addicted as I went from one chapter of the story to another. Combat is a mix of various web slinging abilities, combo attacks, and stealth. The best comparison to make is essentially a redefined version of the Batman Arkham combat system with a Spider-Man twist; which is great. It never gets old as I jump into a group of thugs, knocking them around in the air and pinning them to walls with my webs, all while showing off some flips. New enemies that required certain techniques would be introduced along the way, but new gadgets and skills were introduced as well. The combat system was always expanding and learning how to use your skills was a rewarding effort. Stealth, on the other hand expanded slightly with new gadgets, such as a webbing trip mine, but never truly gets any more exciting from beginning to end. Much of the time I found myself completing stealth areas the same way each time with minimal effort, resulting in sometimes gimmicky stealth levels. Utilizing stealth had its enjoyable points, but it had just as many bland points to match.

I ended up hitting one hundred percent completion in Spider-Man PS4. I had done everything there was to do, and yet, I had the immediate urge to start the adventure all over again. Every aspect, from the Amazing city scenery, to the acrobatic combat, and the deeply emotional story, comes together in what is the best Spider-Man experience currently available. I haven’t restarted the game yet, but you can bet that when New Game Plus is released, I will be back to web-slinging in New York City.

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