Spider-Man ‘Marvel’s Avengers’ preview: thwips, quips, and AIM gunships

We got an early look at Spider-Man and the Klaw Raid in Marvel's Avengers, here's what we thought

Spider-Man is finally coming to Marvel’s Avengers, as he swings into the PS4 and PS5 versions of the game on November 30. He brings with him a new play style, costumes, and more. Crystal Dynamics showed off the wall-crawler alongside the new Klaw raid in some behind closed doors footage, so whilst I didn’t get to play as Spider-Man, I did get a pretty good look at him.

The first thing that stood out to me was the role Spider-Man’s taking in the game. As an attack/support option for players, his moves create a web status meter on enemies, and once it’s full opponents are “webbed” – slowed down as they take more damage from all players – which is built by ranged and heroic attacks.

These attacks are, as you might expect, very reminiscent of Marvel’s Spider-Man from Insomniac Games. He can pull enemies towards him, swing projectiles around, and use different gadgets both on the ground and whilst airborne. Even some of the animations look similar to that game as well. Whilst he definitely still looks to play like he’s in Marvel’s Avengers, I couldn’t help but notice how some animations were clearly inspired by the web-slingers other interactive outings.

Marvel's Avengers Spider-Man
Marvel’s Avengers. Credit: Crystal Dynamics

He seems like a quite well-rounded member of any squad as well, with defensive, supportive, and attacking moves that can be blended with heroic abilities to either do quick damage or help out the other Avengers in combat. As an all-rounder, I was shown how specific abilities and skills can be honed in on depending on your preferred play style, but without having an actual chance to play with Spider-Man and experiment with his abilities myself, it’s incredibly difficult for me to comment on how any of this work in practice, especially over a long period of time as you grind him to max level.

What I did get a really good look at was Spider-Man’s movement options, and how they can be used both in and out of combat to make him a truly unique addition to the roster. For starters web-swinging looks incredibly weighty, giving him a slightly slower and grounded approach to aerial movement. His webs actually attach to objects when he swings as well, which is a small, yet very welcome detail.

There’s also all the other gravity-defying movement you’d come to expect from Spider-Man, and one ability looks to make ground-to-air combat quite interesting. If Spider-Man is wall-running (which can be done by running at a wall mid-combat) and does a leaping attack from that surface, he does extra damage, incentivising the use of what makes Spider-Man Spider-Man, his agility. How this type of movement plays into higher-level play – both in terms of player skill and abilities – could make Spider-Man something truly special.

Marvel's Avengers Spider-Man
Marvel’s Avengers. Credit: Crystal Dynamics

This Peter Parker, as played by Sean Chiplock, doesn’t seem to be practising his tight five for open mic night at the superhero equivalent of the Comedy Store that much, though. Chiplock does capture the unsure, awkward, early twenties guy making ends meet really well, but there didn’t seem to be enough of that alongside his infamous one-liners in the gameplay itself. He does have voice lines that are cycled through for certain actions in combat, as all characters do, but I was expecting a lot more from the supposed king of quips.

Now, for those of you who have gotten this far wondering if Spider-Man is this massive shake-up of the core of what Marvel’s Avengers is, let me provide an answer: no. The friendly neighbourhood superhero looks to largely play within the confines of the game, albeit with the aforementioned unique characteristics.

Sadly, this still means it’s just a whole lot of AIM to fight in his content. They’re still the big bad, and there’s still a shit ton of robots to destroy, Inhumans to save, and grinding to be done, for those so inclined. The new enemy types don’t look to be coming from this Spider-Man DLC but the Klaw raid instead, so if you got sick of beating down the same AIM Synthoids whilst going through the same corridors, and doing the same objectives, this won’t be a massive breath of fresh air for you outside of the web-slinger himself.

From my own time with the rest of the game, and lining that up with what I saw, the draw of the Spider-Man addition will come with the story (as it turns out, there won’t be any story missions, just cutscenes) and how his unique abilities shake up. Although whether or not this creates a crashing wave or pebble drop in the lake of Marvel’s Avengers remains to be seen.

Spider-Man Marvel's Avengers
Marvel’s Avengers. Credit: Crystal Dynamics

I also got a good look at the first raid coming to Marvel’s Avengers, called Discordant Sound. This is for incredibly high-level coordinated teams, and it appears to have a lot of objective variety – even if a lot of them were already in the game – and a slew of new enemies to take out.

Picking up immediately after the War for Wakanda expansion, this raid features puzzles, platforming, and even a new enemy type: Echoes. They come with new attacks, designs, and unique elite varieties as well, which is sure to help make the Klaw Raid feel fresh. The team-based puzzles look to be an interesting way to break up a raid, even if they don’t seem that mentally taxing, and the ability to get extra loot is sure to be a welcome addition. This endgame content looks incredibly difficult as well, so players looking for an extra challenge will no doubt be pleased.

That said, I highly doubt the inclusion of Spider-Man and a new raid in Marvel’s Avengers will sway any naysayers, but for those of us who play Marvel’s Avengers, this new content looks to provide another necessary update to the title.

Spider-Man is exclusively coming to Marvel’s Avengers on PS4 and PS5 on November 30, while the Discordant Sound raid is coming to all platforms on the same day

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