Marvel’s ‘Spider-Man: Miles Morales’ is short, but incredibly sweet

Promotional image of Spider-Man Miles Morales.

Let’s be honest fellow Lions, with the second province-wide lockdown in Ontario this week life appears to be grimmer than ever, especially with entertainment through outdoor activities also in short supply. Luckily, with the release of the next generation of gaming consoles, our ability to find joy and pleasure through the world of video games is now higher than they’ve ever been. 

During the gloomy month of September 2018, the gaming community was endowed with another piece of art worthy of a masterpiece, Marvel’s Spider-Man. Insomniac Games had finally answered the prayers of gamers worldwide and had wholeheartedly delivered a game infused with passion and flair that felt loyal to the hero’s personality, something never before seen in previous Spider-Man installments. 

Now, two years later, the journey of the webslinger is expanded upon in the spinoff Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales, which was released as a launch title for the PlayStation 5 (PS5) to massive hype and demand. 

Promotional image of Spider-Man Miles Morales.

The spinoff title puts the player in the shoes of Miles Morales, a side-character from the 2018 game who now carries the superhero mantle after being bit by a radioactive arachnid like his mentor, Peter Parker. As an Afro-Latino teenager raised in Harlem, Morales feels the pressure of being the sole protector of the city of Manhattan while his mentor is off on a work vacation.

Mohamed Ahmed, a second-year environmental biology student and fellow gamer, shared a few of his thoughts following his completed playthrough of the game. 

“Ever since Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales was announced, I had been anticipating its launch. The game introduces a new aspect to the series through the addition of highly detailed visuals of New York City and smooth gameplay,” Ahmed says.                                                                                          

From its breathtaking visuals to exuberant soundtrack, it’s clear the spinoff title is designed to utilize the capabilities of the PS5, specifically the newly introduced haptic feedback mechanisms on the new DualSense controller. The haptic feedback kicks in at the right moment once taking flight, produces static sounds when Miles uses his infamous bioelectricity, and so much more to enhance the gaming experience.

Controlling the character Morales as he swings through the snowy streets of Manhattan is a delightful treat, and his unorthodox style of web-swinging certainly shows his inexperience in being a full-time superhero compared to his mentor. The player can also enjoy a wide array of unlockable costumes adapted from the spider-verse comics and movies, such as the animated costume from the acclaimed motion picture Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.

Promotional image of Spider-Man Miles Morales.

As for representation, Theepa Thivaharan, a second-year biology student, agrees the game allows for greater representation in playable media. “It places an emphasis on the power it takes to ‘Be Yourself’ and is a much needed representation for the Black community.” The phrase “Be Yourself” is noted to be the game’s motto, and appeared on multiple promotional pieces.

After a thoroughly enjoyable playthrough on the brand new PS5 console, the campaign lasted a total of seven to 10 hours, excluding most of the side content and collectibles scattered across the map. However, even with its short playtime, the game wastes no time in indulging the player into the world of Miles Morales, with the sense of connection as you encounter an emotional tale of friendship and betrayal. 

To simply critique this adventure with a numerical score would be an insult, Marvel’s Spider-Man Miles Morales is an adventure made for and by the fans of this beloved character, and is a must-play if you plan on purchasing the PS5, or playing it on your current PlayStation 4. Either way, you’re in for a treat. 

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By Jerome Jones

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