Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | OUT NOW

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Corazon de Leon
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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Corazon de Leon » Thu Nov 19, 2020 11:43 am

I realise this was a couple of pages ago but I feel the need to weigh in on the "it's a comic book game, not a political game" view that's been expressed in here. Now, firstly, my apologies if this comes off as a bit of a long winded ramble because New York, comic books, propaganda and influence are all subjects I'm extremely interested in academically and they all have this weird intersection here so I've just spent 45 minutes feverishly checking sources and rephrasing paragraphs left, right and centre as new thoughts arrive in my ADHD riddled brain. :lol:

Comic books, particularly Marvel comic books, are inherently political. They always have been, right from the word go. The cover of the first issue of Captain America - Timely's first-ever superhero comic - involved said Captain punching out a real-life figure in world politics - a call to arms against fascism at a time when the United States pursued isolationism. Many of Marvel's superheroes originate in deeply political ways - Iron Man and Vietnam(there's a big conversation about the intense racism in Iron Man for another day), The Hulk and Soviet sabotage(and Black Widow) being two examples off the top of my head.

Zeroing in on Spider-Man himself, the character was the focal point for anti-Vietnam stories in the late 1960s questioning government logic and exploring the human cost of a futile war. He crushed the comics code with stories highlighting waves of drug abuse on the streets of New York in the 1970s. He's met Barack Obama and worked at Ground Zero. He is supposed to be the epitome of the New York everyman, and the teller of New York's stories. That's literally the point of Spider-Man's being as I see it. I don't think it's unfair, or outlandish, to ask that this legacy continues into other media, be that videogames or films. On that note, Miles Morales has been a fantastic extension of Spider-Man's ethos into modern, 21st century New York, something Sara Pichelli, Brian Michael Bendis, and Axel Alonso should be really proud of.

The NYPD has been a focal point of intense criticism over the past few months and years, and I think it's right that media portraying the institution in a positive light should be questioned - everything is propaganda, and we need to question the accuracy of the media we consume. I actually agree with Jawa in that I do not believe the vast majority of rank-and-file officers in the NYPD are corrupt, nor do I think African-American officers have betrayed their race by serving. With that said I also agree with Tomous, that the NYPD is demonstrably corrupt at management level and requires a bottom-up overhaul. In a sense, my view is probably that we should be past the idea of "police = good" in storytelling because there are too many instances where this hasn't been the case in real life for us to make that assumption. But perhaps that's an argument for a different day.

I also don't think we should be ignoring lived experience - if you're going to depict New York and strive for realism in design(as the developers have done exceptionally well!), then it's important to strive to create a realistic New York, if you gather my drift. Even Law & Order, which is about as pro-NYPD as you can get, doesn't portray the cops in a wholly positive light. They do bad things, things which compromise investigations and sometimes cause more problems than they resolve. Spider-Man (PS4) has never quite managed to put any nuance in its portrayal of the police, and that is a real shame.

Obviously it would be incredibly difficult to show all of this in a videogame. I think it was Jawa who mentioned this, and I agree it's difficult to find a narrative excuse within the established universe to show something like racist police brutality. But difficult doesn't mean wrong, and it certainly doesn't mean impossible. And there's comic book precedent for Spidey dealing with corrupt cops - all the Sin-Eater stuff from the 1980s could be updated to fit in with modern standards!

Zilnad wrote:I'm 100% with Denster on this and will be avoiding the thread from here on in. Spider-Man, as a game, is colourful, fun and feel-good. I'm not playing it for social commentary, I'm playing it to forget about real life and to enjoy a rollercoaster of a super hero fantasy. I'm not averse to politics in games but this is ridiculous. It's Spider-Man.


Unfortunately, you are getting social commentary whether you want it or not. The very character of Miles Morales is a political being, created to highlight under-representation of African-American and Latino minorities in superhero media and represent a more life-like version of New York's cultural make-up to the world. With what I've said about New York and Spider-Man in mind, I don't think it's asking *too* much for a game to reflect some of the difficulties that this character faced(and the lived experience of those he's based on) both in his conception and his reception.

Finally, on the subject of Spider-Man PS4 and New York policing, I think it's probably worth mentioning that this is a criticism which was levelled at the original as well:

https://www.theringer.com/2018/9/12/17848460/spider-man-ps4-police

I don't doubt that Miles Morales was already well into production by the time these articles were making their way to the internet, but it would have been nice from my perspective to see some acknowledgement in the character interactions, if possible, and I personally hope there is an acknowledgement of that in the inevitable sequel.

Let me be clear - I am not criticising the views or opinions of anyone in this thread. These are my thoughts as a lifelong fan of both Spider-Man and videogames(I'm drinking coffee from a hollowed out Spidey-head as I type!). You are perfectly entitled to want escapism in your games. But this series offers a real opportunity to transcend the medium and become perhaps the first videogame to offer a genuine piece of social commentary in the way that the best movies or literature can, and validate the medium in so many ways. From the sound of it, that opportunity has been sadly missed.

Tl;dr: Great game from great series misses opportunity to use its setting and source material to transcend into something amazing.

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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Zilnad » Thu Nov 19, 2020 11:59 am

Thank you for that post, it's really informative and I feel a light has been shed on my own ignorance of the situation. I apologise for airing an ill-thought out opinion on the matter and I genuinely feel embarrassed about doing so. It's clear now that I was being pretty selfish and jumping to a knee jerk offense.

I hope that comes across as sincere because I really am but I worry that, in text, I'm coming off as sarcastic. I'm really grateful you took the time to write that post.

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Corazon de Leon
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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Corazon de Leon » Thu Nov 19, 2020 12:18 pm

Zilnad wrote:Thank you for that post, it's really informative and I feel a light has been shed on my own ignorance of the situation. I apologise for airing an ill-thought out opinion on the matter and I genuinely feel embarrassed about doing so. It's clear now that I was being pretty selfish and jumping to a knee jerk offense.

I hope that comes across as sincere because I really am but I worry that, in text, I'm coming off as sarcastic. I'm really grateful you took the time to write that post.


Mate, don't be daft! I didn't read your post as ignorant or anything, and I definitely see why people want to be able to take time away from the relentless crushing badness of the 24-hour news cycle and just not think about it.

This wasn't intended to call anyone out or anything, just to kind of show that Miles Morales is a real, and rare, combination of all the factors necessary to create something lasting, and important. I hope they really work to make this a reality in future games in the series!

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Tomous
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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Tomous » Thu Nov 19, 2020 3:19 pm

Fade wrote:I like how 12 hours is considered short now.

Sounds perfect to me, a lot of games are far too bloated, to the point where most people don't even finish them. Last of Us 2 was a chore to finish for example.

If I want more once I've finished it I can do new game+ or platinum it.



12 hours story would have been fine but i'm seeing 6 hours mentioned for the length of the campaign and 16 hours to 100%. That does feel short, I'm probably going to hold off on this until next year when it is cheaper.

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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Fade » Thu Nov 19, 2020 6:04 pm

Gamers are weird.

No wonder so many companies are making games as service games when so many people are just looking for time sinks.

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captain red dog
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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by captain red dog » Thu Nov 19, 2020 8:34 pm

Wow the Christmas tree in Miles apartment looks incredible! Really loving the vibe of this game, the brighter colours, the awesome soundtrack. Also has an easy mode for my lad to have a swing about!

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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Wedgie » Thu Nov 19, 2020 8:38 pm

This game is amazing. Great opening section.

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Denster wrote:My phone messaged me yesterday after i'd encouraged him to download and play the RESi demo.


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Captain Kinopio
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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Captain Kinopio » Thu Nov 19, 2020 8:51 pm

Fade wrote:Gamers are weird.

No wonder so many companies are making games as service games when so many people are just looking for time sinks.


I’m not sure why you’re being weird about this.

10 hours is pretty short. Especially for a $50 game.

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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Fade » Fri Nov 20, 2020 3:34 pm

Captain Kinopio wrote:
Fade wrote:Gamers are weird.

No wonder so many companies are making games as service games when so many people are just looking for time sinks.


I’m not sure why you’re being weird about this.

10 hours is pretty short. Especially for a $50 game.

Why is that such a factor in gaming though?

Sayonara Wild Hearts is literally an hour long and it's one of my favourite games ever.

It's like people see games more as something to pass the time than an artform. That's why companies like Bethesda can get away with selling broken shite built on ancient technology, because they're lengthy.

I'd rather have a 5 hour game that makes me feel something than a 30 hour game that just has more repetitive things to tick off on a checklist.

People often give companies a free pass on price if they make a grindy game, which I find weird. No one has complained about Demon Souls price for example, despite similar remasters being released at a budget price, why? Because it's it's a grindy game that takes a long time to complete :roll:

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Tomous
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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Tomous » Fri Nov 20, 2020 4:01 pm

What if I told you there was middle ground between a 5 hour game that makes you feel something and a 30 hour time sink of repetitive busy work?


Games are expensive. Value for money is a consideration for most. That isn't weird.

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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Fade » Fri Nov 20, 2020 4:08 pm

Tomous wrote:What if I told you there was middle ground between a 5 hour game that makes you feel something and a 30 hour time sink of repetitive busy work?


Games are expensive. Value for money is a consideration for most. That isn't weird.

What if I told you I was being hyperbolic to make a point?

Why is that value primarily measured in time rather than meaningful experiences though?

No one went to see the Lighthouse and complained it wasn't long enough.

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Tomous
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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Tomous » Fri Nov 20, 2020 4:20 pm

Fade wrote:
Tomous wrote:What if I told you there was middle ground between a 5 hour game that makes you feel something and a 30 hour time sink of repetitive busy work?


Games are expensive. Value for money is a consideration for most. That isn't weird.

What if I told you I was being hyperbolic to make a point?

Why is that value primarily measured in time rather than meaningful experiences though?

No one went to see the Lighthouse and complained it wasn't long enough.


But that doesn't make your point at all because people aren't asking for a 30 hour busywork game of repetitive task.

Comparing it to film is irrelevant because games are far more expensive. Not everyone is privileged that they can spend whatever is asked on "art", people have to consider the value they get from a purchase to ensure the entertainment time they have available is spent in the best way.

There are other options to Spiderman. A longer experience of similar quality might be preferable to some people. I dont understand at all why you are struggling with that.

The game will be below £20 within 12 months so if people feel that way it makes sense to wait.

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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by captain red dog » Fri Nov 20, 2020 4:36 pm

Quit talking about the length of the game, the most important thing is how good the christmas tree looks in Miles' apartment! ;)

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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Fade » Fri Nov 20, 2020 4:40 pm

Right I get that, but people are still evaluating that value primarily by time.

Even by that metric a £50 game still provides comparable value to a film if it's 10 hours long.

Completion time just seems like SUCH a big thing when it comes to games, it bothers me. It's always an elephant in the room, even for smaller cheaper games like Hell Blade.

Last edited by Fade on Fri Nov 20, 2020 4:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Yoshimi » Fri Nov 20, 2020 4:42 pm

Is it just me or does Ganki's voice sound far too similar to Peter's?

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Tomous
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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Tomous » Fri Nov 20, 2020 4:44 pm

That example only works if people are considering spending £50 on 10 films.

For many, it is do i spend £50 on Game A that i will get 20 hours from or Game B that I will get 40 hours.

I do agree that this can cause bad game design decisions developers, in the same way open world games have an arms race on map size.

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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by captain red dog » Fri Nov 20, 2020 4:52 pm

Yoshimi wrote:Is it just me or does Ganki's voice sound far too similar to Peter's?

I haven't noticed that. I quite like Ganki as he is the typical guy in the chair like the kid from Homecoming/Far From Home.

It's good as I'm not massively into the detail of the comics, so there are probably some characters in this that will provide some surprise later on.

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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by Rubix » Fri Nov 20, 2020 6:05 pm

Wedgie wrote:This game is amazing. Great opening section.


I am 50% in and the start opener was probably my favourite so far

PLAY | Hades, Hitman 2, Ghost of Tsushima, Bravely Second
WATCH | The Fall S2, 24 S4, The Mandalorian S2, Taskmaster S10
READ | [b] I'll Be There For You
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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by captain red dog » Fri Nov 20, 2020 6:18 pm

Rubix wrote:
Wedgie wrote:This game is amazing. Great opening section.


I am 50% in and the start opener was probably my favourite so far

50% jeez! I'm savouring it. I got to the awesome Christmas tree and now I'm doing the first game again to get back into errr.... the swing of things. :shifty:

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PostRe: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales | PS4/PS5 | Christmas 2020
by ITSMILNER » Sat Nov 21, 2020 8:29 am

Loving the Spider-app to get side quests

Long Live Switch Squad!

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