Over the last seven years, Sony has continued to push game storytelling to a new level. As someone who’s had PlayStation consoles in their household since childhood, the PS5 is a beastly piece of tech. As a big fan of Miles Morales, I was extremely eager to play his PlayStation launch title, and Spider-Man: Miles Morales did not disappoint.
I’ve said this before about PlayStation 5 content but it bears repeating: believe the damn hype. Everybody’s been talking it up more and more because we’ve had some amazing trailers, some dope suits, and lots of excitement, but I personally believe it lives up to all of it. I’ve now had the chance to complete the full game on the PS4, play Spectacular Mode (the highest difficulty) on PS5, and I’m currently working my way through a New Game Plus. Although I loved every minute on PS4, there is such a big difference on the PS5. It’s a game-changer.
This standalone story for Miles was everything I hoped it would be. Before you start this game you do have to remind yourself that it is shorter than PS4’s Spider-Man. Insomniac Games confirmed ahead of time that Miles Morales would be on par lengthwise with Uncharted: Lost Legacy, so just keep that in mind as you jump in.
The game takes place about a year after the events of the first game. Miles has moved to his new home in Harlem and his mom is running for City Council. Besides his mother, Miles also has his comic book best friend Ganke by his side as he adjusts to Harlem and becomes a hero all his own. New York is covered in snow as Miles takes his Winter Break from school. A war between an energy corporation (Roxxon) and a high-tech criminal army (The Underground) has broken out, and Harlem is the heart of the battle.
Overall, I thought it was an amazing story. I’ve talked about this previously, but it feels more community-driven. Miles is more immersed in his environment and the people surrounding him. Each threat is very personal to what he’s doing now that he’s moved to Harlem, he’s starting fresh trying to adjust and he’s still dealing with what happened to his family in the previous game. Miles is going through a lot, he’s juggling friendships, a secret identity, and still learning to be Spider-Man. So when he’s tasked with actually having to save the city on his own while Peter’s away, that thrust into the spotlight really makes for a compelling story. By the end of Miles’s journey, I felt fully satisfied. I was ready for more as the credits rolled. To take Miles to the next level in these games was the whole point, and I suspect they have bigger plans for Miles down the road. This is clearly just the beginning.
Gameplay on the PS5
I specifically remember playing the 2018 version of Spider-Man, and the first time you jump out the window you’re just like… damn! You see New York and you’re swinging. You start moving and it’s just beautiful. I had that exact same experience when I was playing with Miles Morales but with the graphics and motion, it is on another level. Seeing him just jump across the city was breathtaking, especially with the detail of how he swings. Miles swings very differently from Peter. He’s looser and has his own style/vibe with it. Playing as Miles on the new DualSense controller, it feels like you’re really in control.
The fighting in Miles Morales was so cool especially when you start to incorporate his other powers like the new Venom Blast (that’s all I’ll say about that for now). Because Miles has a few more powers than Peter Parker, they make sure to utilize that and weave it into the story.
Unlocking suits in this game was just as much fun as the original, and it might even be a bit more fun. One of my favorites was definitely the Into The Spider-Verse Suit. The amount of detail they put into that one – it was almost as if they just grabbed the character from the movie and made him a playable character. The ray-tracing elevates the crispness and attention to detail in every suit.
Hip Hop music is essential to Miles as a character, not only for his hero theme but for him as a person. I thought Insomniac Games did a brilliant job of making sure it felt authentic to this interpretation of Miles and not seeming like it’s trying to mimic how Into The Spider-Verse approached it. The soundtrack is fire, every part of it, and I can’t wait until it drops on Spotify.
All in all Spider-Man: Miles Morales is the perfect game to bring players into the next generation. I am so excited to see what the team at Insomniac Games has up their sleeves for us in the future! (Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart can’t come soon enough)
Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales is available for PS5 and PS4 on November 12th.