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Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 Side Quests Are Amazing

Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 Side Quests Are Amazing

So, I’ve been playing Marvel's Spider-Man 2 for the past few days and I’ve been going for 100% completion, as I’ve done in the previous two games. In Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales, I really loved the direction the developer Insomniac Games went with, not always having Spider-Man deal with criminal activities, but just helping the community, solving less intense problems throughout the game. Now with a bigger budget and more time, I was looking forward to the smaller stories being told.

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The city is more than just your playground.

Spoilers for some side missions and characters! You’ve been warned.

Now, you have some very cool side missions and activities to go on if you want to keep yourself from doing the main story. You’ve got missions with Wraith and her war against the Flame cult, Mysterio and his Mysterium combat challenges, and Sandman and his memories. All the activities have some really cool moments, shocking reveals, and sometimes even manage to subvert your expectations and give you a really amazing boss fight. In the first game, it felt like checking a box off a list of tasks I had to do with a small congratulations after clearing them all, but now we have overarching plots that may lead into new stories when we get Marvel's Spider-Man 3.

However, it isn’t all about stopping the bad guy’s latest criminal conspiracy. Some missions bring it down back to earth. One mission has you play as one of the side characters, Hailey. The thing is, Hailey is deaf, and the game adapts accordingly. All the sounds are muted and muffled, and any reactions she may have are expressed in emojis. It’s a really cute little story if a little light on the gameplay side, but it shows sometimes you don’t need spider powers (or ears, for that matter) to help someone.

Marvel's Spider-Man 2 Screenshots 1

Being Spider-Man is more than just being a hero, but a friendly neighbour to someone in need.

But not every mission has a truly happy ending. Now, if you’ve played the previous two games, you should know about Howard, the pigeon guy. You’ve probably collected his pigeons for him as Peter and listened to Peter’s pigeon facts as Miles. He’s a really good character, and seeing him in the game once again was really nice. So imagine my shock after a fun mission of flying through New York City with the web wings to a happy tune; the end of the mission has Howard pass away peacefully. It never really occurred to me how old and how sickly he may have been until then; all I remember him saying was that he was going on his own grand adventure. I thought he was going on a trip or something! Death by natural causes almost never happens in stories like this. It was always kidnapping, murder, disease, a deal with the devil, or some other problem that enough webs and kicks to the face would fix… but not in this mission. There’s no saving anyone here, just setting them free like the pigeons he kept. If you play as him, you can hear Peter's voice break, wishing him well on his adventure. There is another side mission that deals with a similar theme, but if you don’t know what I’m talking about, go play it. You won’t regret it.

Marvel's Spider-Man 2 Screenshots 2

In a rather bleak game, it's nice to see some sunshine once in a while.

Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 feels like a breath of fresh air after what a year it has been with AAA games. Sure, we’ve got some amazing games made with love and passion like Dead Space (2023), Baldur's Gate 3, and Resident Evil 4 (2023). But then we get games that fall short of expectations for many, like Redfall, Forspoken, and (arguably) Starfield. I don’t always need grand stories that span across a dozen quests, where I save the day or decide the fate of millions. Sometimes, the smaller moments are what matter most to me, and just being someone's friendly neighbour is more than enough.

Dylan Pamintuan

Dylan Pamintuan

Staff Writer

Taking all of the AAA games

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