Written by Andrew Busch // Edited by Drew Beyer // Image courtesy of PlayStation
Yesterday at the PlayStation E3 conference Sony showed off some impressive gameplay footage of Insomniac’s upcoming Spider-Man. The nearly nine-minute gameplay video is an adrenaline pumping thrill ride that switches effortlessly between fluid combat and stunning cinematic moments.
The first things worth mentioning about the gameplay trailer are its moments of both stealth and combat. The gameplay reminds me of the Batman Arkham series where players sneak around and clear an area of enemies using a combination of stealth takedowns. The combat is also a bit similar as Spiderman jumps over bad guys while building up a combo chain. However, what makes Spider-Man a bit different is the seamlessness of its action. Every move or attack highlighted in the gameplay video are performed without using some type of clunky menu to swap gadgets. This small touch maintains a sense of genuine immersion and smooth combat.
Another nice detail the gameplay reveal showcases is the player’s freedom to interact with the environment. For example, when Spiderman is outnumbered he uses his surroundings to turn the odds in his favor. He slings a web to turn a giant steel beam that knocks out a few bad guys. Hopefully there will be more environmental interaction throughout the game because it provides players with an opportunity to combine strategy with brutal hand-to-hand combat.
Spider-Man is also a gorgeous game. I was blown away by the graphics as well as how smoothly it transitions between cutscenes and actual play. At one point, the player finishes saving a city block from a falling crane in a short quick-time event, and right as they secure the crane Spiderman performs a graceful twist to signal the player has taken control again. My jaw dropped. This is how cutscenes should be used.
Unfortunately, Spider-Man is also slotted for a 2018 release so it looks like PlayStation owners won’t be able to grab the game anytime soon. Until then, I will be waiting patiently for a chance to swing through New York as the friendly neighborhood Spiderman.