From the first moment of the game, the derivative and continuity nature of ‘Spider-Man: Miles Morales’ is clear. Although Sony has wanted to sell it as a flagship of these first steps of Playstation 5, and it is the main exclusive game of the console right now, its origins are clear not as a sequel to Playstation 4, but as an originally minor game, a bit of a bridge between the first ‘Spider-Man’ and a full-fledged sequel.
The game has also been accompanied by controversy by not including the update of the first ‘Spider-Man’ for Playstation 5, something to which Sony was not obliged but which would undoubtedly have been a generous gesture. Possibly, too, would have devalued the image of this ‘Miles Morales’, leaving in evidence its condition as a sequel unable to fly alone without the accompaniment of his older sister. But … what is true in all this? Does Miles Morales bear the fame that precedes him?
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‘Miles Morales’: New York in winter
If you played the first ‘Spider-Man’, you can play ‘Miles Morales’. Because the game is, mechanically, a replica in all aspects: the balance between buildings, the combat system (same techniques to hit, dodge, move and activate different gadgets) and the distribution of main and secondary missions. Alone some new features, such as the appearance of strong electrical powers that force you to learn a few button combinations, and a mobile app that manages the secondary missions, will force you to manage some new resources.
In general, all elements of the game have been refined, and almost always for the better: the swinging feels a little more precise, the combat is more balanced and the idea of the app is extraordinary. Any advance to manage missions in a sandbox it’s welcome, and here you get side quests to fire without leaving the main game screen, which takes considerable time and effort.
The bloated sequel conditions to rush to the Playstation 5 launch are what make some aspects of the whole look lackluster. For example, the skill tree, cut in half here. Or the same plot of the game: this time, we focus on Miles Morales as the only Spider-Man in New York when Peter Parker goes on vacation. Morales will have to face a powerful group that is developing a new source of energy, with a leader clearly inspired by Elon Musk; We also have a violent revolutionary group facing them; and the inevitable and extremely high dose of common violence in the streets of the city.
All this are not very worked derivations of groups of enemies already present in the first ‘Spider-Man’. It is obvious that different opposing factions are needed to generate missions (and invent multiple tasks to search and track objects in the city) and thus move the plot forward, but the paramilitary group the edge of the legal, the terrorists-who-are-not-it-of-the-tdo and the doses of street robberies that make New York almost a war zone were already present, with hardly any variations, in the first game.
What is certain is that the character of Miles Morales and his surroundings are as attractive as the Peter Parker of the first ‘Spider-Man’ and its secondary ones, or even more. In addition, those burdensome missions consisting of working overtime as a police technician to place surveillance antennas for the population have been dispensed with. And how could it be otherwise with a character like Morales, there is some thorny moment in the script, about the relationship of African Americans with the police who does not shy away and ask some questions no response to air. Good for Insomniac’s bravery.
But … what does the Playstation 5 version provide?
The technical improvements are tiny. As we have specified in our review of the console, an option is proposed in the menu in which the player is invited to choose between performance and exhibitionism graphic. The differences exist but, at the moment, they are practically negligible, much more in a game that is not particularly demanding on the visual. But yeah, the Playstation visual candy is here: 60 fps and ray-tracing, among other things that give a definitive facelift to the original game.
But where the power of the PS5 really shows is in the loading times. Starting the game is practically instantaneous: ten seconds from the main console menu, you’re already swinging through the streets. Returning to the game after death is almost immediate, and so are quick trips from one end of the map to the other: no more leaden loading screens in the subway. In fact, Miles Morales in the subway is the main menu, because it is no longer needed at any other point in the game.
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What has not been taken too much advantage is the capabilities of the command. There is vibration for all tastes, of course, and Every slight movement on the screen has an impact on the DualSense, but it doesn’t go much further hence, the programmable resistance triggers are hardly used. Another clear testament to the game’s PS4 origins.
A couple of strokes around the map of ‘Miles Morales’ will make you realize that you are alone in front of New York itself with skin of snow. Likewise, the cloned mechanics still work, but they cry out for some renovation. If you are a fan, you will enjoy the new story and the new costumes (the one from the animated film sensational), but possibly Playstation 5 deserved something more differentiating to take off. In any case, it is still a good emulate of the ‘Spider-Man’ of PS4 … and perhaps an announcement of the importance that Sony gives to what will undoubtedly be a new era of exclusive games.