The friendly neighbor returns and soars to new heights in the hands of Miles Morales in an installment part of the launch of PlayStation 5. This is a new incarnation of the agile arachnid that shines thanks to its emotional and powerful participation that overflows with tons of personality; the result is a Spider-Man who asks nothing of the original and who stands out on his own.
The first feeling is that this game is much more than an expansion, despite offering considerably less extension than the original, and it is because the amalgamation of the game systems, characters and story have a feeling of closeness, empathy and emotional attachment.
Thus, the story offers us the solo adventure of Miles Morales, an ordinary boy who acquired powers from an accidental bite of a genetically modified spider. Now, from the hand of the original Spider-Man, that is, Peter Parker, he must learn the ins and outs of the trade of the friendly guardian protector of Manhattan, but he will have to do it quickly because Peter has a pending business trip to Europe, which leaves the young and inexperienced Miles Morales as the only Spider-Man in Manhattan.
This is how the story takes flight, with the participation of Miles Morales —characterized by Nadji Jeter— who feels honest, realistic and empathic; that of a young man who has doubts, insecurities and, above all, hope and trust in his loved ones. And it is precisely this feeling of closeness that he shares with the story, which is based on a large-scale conflict that is closely meshed with the community of Harlem north of Manhattan where, by chance, the home of Miles Morales is. .
The story is limited mainly to a neighborhood of the stage, which denotes the limited spectrum and scope of the work of Insomniac Games and betrays that, in effect, Miles Morales is a stand-alone expansion pack based on the game that debuted 2 years ago. However, it does not feel like a work that reuses everything from the original, since the stage is covered in snow, which indicates its proximity to the end of the year festivities, and that gives us a different visual experience.
On the other hand, it keeps intact the signature gameplay that charmed and delighted countless superhero fans a couple of years ago. For example, the action of catapulting yourself at full speed and swinging dizzyingly through the skyscrapers of Manhattan or at ground level in the streets remains unchanged. Without much fear of doubt, it is one of the most satisfying methods of locomotion that exists in video games.
Likewise, the combat stays true to the original with a system that inherits principles established and refined over the last decade. The feeling is one of power and agility with Miles Morales landing blows left and right from an extensive list of moves; At the same time, he dodges and lifts his enemies into the air, to continue connecting combos that he finishes off with extravagant movements seasoned with stylized camera close-ups.
But let's not forget that this Spidey is brand new, so underneath his repertoire of moves he now adds special features, which you'll discover as the story progresses. Thus, Miles Morales can execute special attacks by landing blows and dodging the assaults of his enemies, unleashing his spider arsenal in powerful electrical attacks that stun his opponents.
"Miles Morales is agile, intelligent and charismatic, but he is not a detective"
At the same time and faithful to the source material, Miles Morales can blend into the environment and become practically invisible. This feature opens up stealth opportunities before and during combat, resulting in a satisfying amalgamation of action and subterfuge that shines in tight situations. Unfortunately, the scripted stealth sections, for example when you have to investigate using this ability, aren't the best of the pack: Miles Morales is agile, smart and charismatic, but he's no detective.
Despite the above, what Miles Morales is is his own Spider-Man, and we say this thanks to the injection of personality he receives. We say this not because it is a new character, but because he exudes style and personality with every breath of fresh air he takes: from his gestures and body language to his involuntary actions. For example, the way he pirouettes with each swing of his web tells us a lot about his behavior and personality. The same can be said for his performance in combat, especially in dramatic close-ups during finishing moves against enemies. Despite all of the above, we think that the opportunity to change the presentation of the character was missed because, in the end, Miles Morales does not differ from his predecessor despite being fundamentally different.
On the other hand, as we said, this adventure is an expansion and for this reason it does not share its full scope or vision in relation to the original installment and you can perceive a better approach focused on the activities that you will find throughout Manhattan during your adventure. . In Spider-Man: Miles Morales The traditional search for activities that are scattered throughout the stage awaits you, which, on this occasion, take the form of side missions, crime and artifact hunts and other activities on the roofs and parks of Manhattan. For example, the previous Spider-Man left a series of virtual trainings for Miles Morales to go through in order to gain valuable skills; there are also the settlements full of enemies, boxes full of tools, among others. All in all, the variety isn't that wide, but it's enough to keep you busy while you complete the main story and later when you finish it.
All activities reward you with artifacts that you use to upgrade your suit. And, speaking of suits, in Miles Morales you can unlock more than a handful of amazing and colorful outfits. The interesting thing about these is that each one unlocks a modifier that you can use in conjunction with others to transform your abilities; It should be clarified that this does not mean that each suit has a unique behavior.
"The variety isn't that wide, but it does keep you busy while you complete the main story and later when you finish it"
Miles Morales grows powerful with every action he takes, gaining experience points that he spends on a skill tree that is divided into combat, special powers, and stealth. The only thing we didn't like is that it's level restricted, i.e. you won't be able to learn any skill unless you're of a certain level, but at the same time, it doesn't matter much because you level up as you go. through the skill tree. Our point is that if we were to remove such a restriction, progress would not be affected.
We predict that it will not take you more than 8 hours to complete the main story with a minimum deviation towards secondary activities, which is a considerable number of hours that are extended with the fulfillment of additional tasks and doubled with the mode of new game plus. In this sense... yes, Spider-Man: Miles Morales it's considerably short, but still has enough to keep you entertained for a long time.
Regarding the visual quality, we have no complaints of any kind. Spider-Man: Miles Morales it's a game that looks extremely good no matter what platform you decide to play it on. This review was made from the experience on a PlayStation 5, however, we also played it on PlayStation 4 and the feeling is almost the same. We put an emphasis on “almost the same”, as it is generally a good looking game.
However, on PlayStation5 is where it gets a new dimension of quality thanks to the added features of the console. For example, here it offers us ray tracing on different surfaces, better character models, and generally a higher quality technological implementation throughout its 2 video options. One is Fidelity, which prioritizes a 4K experience, with additional effects in shading, ray tracing, with a count of 30 frames per second that are perceived as stable.
"We enjoyed every second of the fluid combat and fast-paced action as we swung across Manhattan"
The other is Performance mode, whose priority is to deliver a 60 frames per second experience, but at the sacrifice of some of the fidelity mode improvements. This experience is the one we enjoyed the most, and despite the lack of resolution, it was very difficult, even impossible, to notice the differences between the resolution jumps in the middle of combat. Mind you, we enjoyed every second of the fluid combat and fast-paced action as we swung through Manhattan.
The verdict is that while PlayStation 5 is the ultimate visual experience, PlayStation 4 is no slouch. It's important to note that our experience was affected a couple of times by some bugs, for example, inoperative objectives that prevented us from progressing until the checkpoint was reset, and even bugs that left our PlayStation 5 frozen. the one that lacked a couple of percentage points of polish in its final stage.
Finally, we must mention the disappointing implementation of the DualSense, the new console controller that is pointed out as one of the differentiators of the generation. Here we note an implementation almost by compromise that did not take advantage of the goodness or capabilities of the command in an impressive way. The haptic function is forgettable, while the adaptive triggers are hardly used. In short, we would have liked an implementation with greater degrees of imagination, but for this we will have to wait longer.
Thus we come to the final verdict of Spider-Man: Miles Morales, of which we will say that it is a solid delivery of the friendly neighbor, that is to say, a yes with all the law that shows us that the city of Manhattan has a lot of potential to offer new and varied stories of this young Spidey. Perhaps we are talking about the foundation of a profitable franchise that operates with game models with a short, but defined scope and extension, which feels like a compilation of a comic series previously published in single issues and that in the future could be extended in another TPB.
The game shines for offering a personal and endearing approach to its protagonist, while using the best cards, forgetting the lethargic progress of its original version. Miles Morales It is pure personality and unmatched style. Recommended.