Developer: Insomniac Games
Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
Released: September 7, 2018
Copy supplied by publisher
Much like the film franchise, the Spider-Man video game series has seen its up and downs over the years. The 2017 theatrical release of Spider-Man: Homecoming saw a return to form for Spidey on the big screen and the PS4 exclusive Spider-Man hopes to do the same for the wall-crawler’s gaming fortunes. The video game industry has a long and storied history with adaptations of comic and film properties and gamers have suffered through some lackluster efforts. The Spider-Man series has fared better than most, with such highlights as 2000’s Spider-Man and 2004’s Spider-Man 2, both of which were published by Activision. The key component to a quality video game experience featuring the young web-slinger has been the successful adaptation of Spider-Man’s unique abilities. Providing a compelling story wrapped up in a fun and intuitive gameplay experience featuring an iconic superhero is a tall task that requires the full attention of the developer.
Insomniac Games is well known for its acumen when it comes to delivering a concise and technically proficient traversal of a 3D environment, which was on full display in 2014’s underrated Xbox One exclusive Sunset Overdrive. Insomniac has been at the forefront of 3D action-adventure games since they the entered the scene with the Spyro the Dragon franchise on the original PlayStation. The evolution of the genre could be witnessed with the developer’s work on the Ratchet & Clank franchise, which has spanned three generations of Sony consoles. Despite the long relationship with Sony, it was arguably Insomniac’s lone flirtation with Microsoft exclusivity that proved that they were the top candidate to revitalize the Spider-Man franchise. Twenty years of development have provided the framework for what is arguably the pinnacle of 3D open world traversal. Combined with some gorgeous visuals and a compelling narrative, Spider-Man stands alone as the greatest Spider-Man video game and arguably the best in its genre.