What I Want to See from Insomniac’s Spider-Man After Watching ‘Homecoming’
After seeing the recently released Spider-Man: Homecoming, I have some new thoughts about what I'd love to see in the upcoming Insomniac Spider-Man game.
Like many of you probably did, I saw the recently-released Spider-Man: Homecoming this past weekend and boy, did I love it. As a longtime fan of Spider-Man — and more specifically an enthusiast of the Ultimate Spider-Man comic series — the film pulled off so many things that I have wanted to see since I was a kid and saw the first live-action Spider-Man film from Sam Raimi. Walking out of the theater though, I couldn’t help but think ahead to the next big piece of web-head related media that is on the horizon — the PS4-exclusive Marvel’s Spider-Man from Insomniac Games.
After seeing Homecoming, I had all kinds of new ideas regarding what I would love to see from Insomniac’s upcoming game. While the gameplay demo that we saw at E3 this year was fantastic, there’s still so much that we don’t know about the game before it releases in 2018. That said, here are a handful of things I adored about Homecoming that I would love to see Insomniac try to implement in their take on Marvel’s Spider-Man.
Of course, I will be spoiling certain elements of Spider-Man: Homecoming in this article, so if you have yet to see the movie for yourself, I suggest you do so first.
New Spins and Added Depth to Classic Villains
By far the most surprising part of Spider-Man: Homecoming to me was that Marvel found a way to make Vulture a compelling villain. While Vulture might be a classic baddie in the Spider-Man rogues gallery, he has always been one of my least favorite. An old dude in a bird suit is just kind of lame. In Homecoming though, I found Vulture to be one of the more fleshed out villains in the Marvel Cinematic Universe thus far, which was not something I would’ve expected myself to say before seeing the movie.
The decision to open the movie up with Adrian Toomes and inform us as, the viewers, as to why he turned to his life of crime was not only smart, but it also made us sympathize with the character. At the end of the day, Toomes just wanted to provide for his family and while he may have done some evil things along the way, it allowed us to at least understand where he was coming from.
I’m hoping that with Marvel’s Spider-Man, Insomniac takes the time to also add some depth and backstory to the villains that they will be featuring. So far, we know that Wilson Fisk — AKA The Kingpin — and Mr. Negative are the only confirmed villains in the game, but I’m sure they won’t be the only ones. I’d be shocked not to see a slew of classic bad guys like Doctor Octopus, Mysterio, or Sandman show up in the game once it releases. If these old-school villains do appear, I really hope that Insomniac takes the time to make them their own and add a unique spin on each character that longtime fans of Spider-Man might not expect.
A Strong Focus on Peter’s Private Life
While the more exciting parts of Peter’s life might take place when he’s wearing the red and blue spandex, I think it’s equally important for Insomniac to flesh out this private life. In Homecoming, some of the best scenes in the movie took place when Peter wasn’t even in costume. When it’s all said and done, I’m hoping that the same can be said for Marvel’s Spider-Man.
I want to see Peter’s relationships with potential characters like Aunt May, Mary Jane, J. Jonah Jameson, and maybe even Gwen Stacy fleshed out within the upcoming game. As much as I love the PS2 classic Spider-Man 2, the game’s story and characters were definitely some of its weaker parts. After seeing the gameplay demo for Marvel’s Spider-Man last month at E3, I’m already sold on the look and flow that the game seems to have. Now we just need a great story, and to me, all great Spider-Man stories deal more with Peter’s strife in his private life rather than what he is dealing with when swinging around New York City. If Insomniac can hone in and give us some powerful scenes featuring Peter out of his costume, then Marvel’s Spider-Man should turn out fantastic.
Reloadable Web Cartridges
This is a small note in the grand scheme of things, but I loved seeing Peter actually reload his freaking web cartridges for once in Homecoming. While Tobey Maguire’s webbing may have been synthetic in the original Raimi film trilogy, I can’t remember a single instance where Andrew Garfield’s version of Spider-Man ever had to switch out his cartridges. Is this a small gripe? Yes, but it’s also something that I always found strange. There were a handful of times in Homecoming where Holland’s Spidey swapped out his cartridges with the spares that he had on his waist. It’s a small touch within the movie, but one that I appreciated.
Now, how could this be implemented into Marvel’s Spider-Man? Well, I honestly don’t know. In my head I think it’d be cool if they added a sort of reload mechanic to Spider-Man’s webs in the game, but I feel like that would quickly get annoying — especially when swinging around the city. If done right though, I think it could add a unique gameplay mechanic that we haven’t seen in a Spider-Man game before. If Spidey’s webbing could run out, you’d definitely think harder about how and when you would want to use it. It’s an interesting idea that I’d like to see Insomniac try out, but I doubt it would happen.
A Variety of Unique, New Gadgets
When Tony Stark develops your suit, you’re going to have some fun toys to play with. Spider-Man: Homecoming showed us tons of cool pieces of tech like the classic web-wings, taser-webs, and even a new Spider-Drone. Seeing these gadgets that Spider-Man had at his disposal in Homecoming really made me think about some of the cool things that Insomniac could do within their game.
Honestly, I think it’s a shoe-in that we’re going to get to play around with some cool and unique items in Marvel’s Spider-Man. I mean, Insomniac is developing the game after all and their past titles like Sunset Overdrive, the Resistance series, and Ratchet and Clank show that they know how to create some awesome weapons that we’ve never seen before. In fact, Insomniac’s pedigree for creating awesome weapons was one of the things that made me the most excited when I learned that they were the developers of the game. This year’s demo at E3 showed off a couple of nifty gadgets that Spidey will have, and I’m sure this will be a ton of others. Fingers crossed that the Spider-Mobile shows up.
Web Swinging That Changes Depending on Your Location
One of my favorite parts of Homecoming was when Spider-Man was chasing the van with the first Shocker in it through a suburban neighborhood. Not only was it just a fun, Ferris Bueller-inspired action scene, but I absolutely loved how Peter wasn’t able to web swing in his usual manner. When he first begins chasing down the bad guys, he tries to shoot a web only to realize that there’s nothing for him to attach to because there are no tall buildings around. Because of this, he then has to quickly adjust and change the way that he is pursuing the escapees.
In past Spider-Man games, web swinging has been relatively the same in every part of the city, whether you’re downtown Manhattan or in the middle of a neighborhood in Queens. With Marvel’s Spider-Man, I’d love to see Insomniac mix things up and make web slinging a bit more dynamic depending on your location. If you’re downtown New York City then yeah, it’d make sense to swing in your usual manner. But if you’re in an area with not many tall buildings to stick your webs to, then you should be forced to utilize the web zip mechanic a bit more. Additionally, we’ve already seen that it looks like the game will contain some more free running than in past Spider-Man games, so maybe that’s another way you could get around the smaller parts of town a bit more quickly.
Regardless of how you would need to change your style of play, web swinging shouldn’t feel the same in every part of the game’s world, and Homecoming proved such.
These are just a few things that caught my attention after watching Spider-Man: Homecoming. Hopefully, we’ll see more of Marvel’s Spider-Man sooner rather than later as the game will be discussed this weekend on July 15th at Disney’s D23 Expo. And if you haven’t seen Homecoming yet, I encourage you to do so — it’s a ton of fun.
Marvel’s Spider-Man is slated to release exclusively on PS4 in 2018.