The new "Spider-Man 2" trailer embraces Spidey’s dark side, but it’s also full of small details that are easy to miss. While fans’ hopes of "Spider-Man 2" co-op have been thoroughly crushed, there is plenty to be excited about. The new gameplay trailer — which debuted during May 24’s PlayStation Showcase livestream — clearly builds off the last game, featuring an open-world New York City for both Parker and the newly-minted Miles, who was bitten in the first game by an Oscorp spider and has become a superhero in his own right.
Full of explosive fun, the trailer showcases the ability to seamlessly transitioning from Peter to Miles and back again through supervillain battles and high-energy chase sequences. Even Miles’ friend, Ganke, gets in on the action, offering helpful tactical advice as the two Spider-Men deal with Kraven the Hunter and track down Dr. Curt Connors, a.k.a. the Lizard. Only now, Peter Parker is enveloped by the Symbiote that will eventually become Venom, complete with all the abilities and changes that could entail.
Here are some of the small details only true fans might notice in the latest trailer for "Marvel’s Spider-Man 2."
Returning friends and foes
Sony Interactive Entertainment
The new trailer opens with the reveal of none other than Kraven, a world-class hunter who has taken to stalking the world’s most dangerous game: man. Bored of his latest hunts, he then looks to New York City as the perfect place to test his skills. He comes to this decision after he’s handed a tablet by one of his subordinates, which displays a virtual map of the city — as well as some of its toughest inhabitants.
Eagle-eyed fans will pick out a number of returning faces on the screen, and we’re not just talking about our two Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man. Aside from Miles and Peter, the screen also briefly shows a marker for Black Cat, Peter’s old-flame-turned-burglar, who hasn’t shown her face since the DLC chapters from the first game. She’s briefly referenced in "Spider-Man: Miles Morales" as working more on the side of the good guys these days, so hopefully we’ll see her in more of a heroic role in the fight against Kraven and his cronies.
Meanwhile, it looks like Miles’ uncle, Aaron Davis (a.k.a. the Prowler) has been released from prison following the events of "Spider-Man: Miles Morales." He also seemed to have a change of heart towards the end of that game, so perhaps Miles can count on his help as Peter inevitably breaks bad. The simulation shows a few other returning faces, including the crime boss Tombstone and the mercenary known as Taskmaster, both of whom tested Spider-Man in the first game.
Fans can also get their first glimpse at Wraith, the costumed alter ego of former police captain Yuri Watanabe, who lost her cool and killed a mob enforcer in the DLC chapter "The City That Never Sleeps." She appears to be continuing down the same dark path as her comics counterpart.
The truth about Harry is likely out in the open
In the previous title, the game ends with a mid-credits scene of New York City Mayor Norman Osborn visiting a secret lab. There, we learn that his son, Harry, is suspended in what appears to be a form of stasis, apparently using a Symbiote to keep him alive. This is obviously a secret, but one that Peter Parker and Miles seem to have discovered in the new trailer. In fact, Harry’s condition appears to be the motivating factor in keeping Dr. Connors alive and out of the clutches of Kraven’s team of soldiers.
Parker emphatically tells Miles as the two Spider-Men swing across the river, "Can’t lose Connors! Harry’s dying, and he’s the only one who could help."
Before the events of this game, Peter had been told that Harry had simply left town and cut contact with his friends, but now he knows the truth. It’s also worth noting that Peter directly states that he knows Harry is dying — but is therefore still alive. It’s possible that we’ll finally get to see Harry Osborne in the flesh, this time around. This also explains why Parker is so dedicated to stopping these hunters before it’s too late. Before he unleashes all kinds of absolute heck on the baddies, Parker cries out: "I warned you about after Connors. Now this is on you!"
Miles and Peter finally manage to track the Lizard down to an old fish market, where they find… his skin. They correctly surmise that the beast must be growing larger and stronger with each transformation, with its carnivorous appetite growing along with it. It’s a long shot, but hardcore fans may note the similarities between this moment and an infamous storyline in the comics: 2010’s "Shed."
From creators Zeb Wells and Chris Bachalo, "Shed" was part of an overarching storyline called "The Gauntlet," in which Spidey faced off against most of his greatest nemeses in quick succession. None of them held a candle to how dark and gruesome "Shed" was, however. In this storyline, Dr. Curt Connors finally loses himself to the Lizard part of his mind, culminating in a sequence in which he is forced to eat his own son by the dominant reptilian personality. With Connors seemingly gone forever, the Lizard takes full control, shedding its skin and becoming more fearsome and inhuman than ever.
It’s unlikely that "Marvel’s Spider-Man 2" will get quite as dark as that storyline. Still, the presence of bloody, torn-up fish all over the place — as well as Miles’ comment about the Lizard being hungry — seems to suggest that this version is taking cues from "Shed."
Miles gets a classic suit upgrade
In the first game, Peter mentions having tested out "underarm webs" to help him glide through the city, but he never managed to get them past the prototype phase. This immediately got some fans hoping for the introduction of gliding mechanics in the sequel, but it also stood out as a fun easter egg for longtime comic book readers. In the comics, Peter has typically had webs under the arms of his costume in some form, either as an aesthetic choice or as a practical addition to his crimefighting gear. These were conspicuously absent from Insomniac’s "Spider-Man" games — until now, as it seems our heroes finally got the things working.
In one of the coolest moments in the trailer, Miles catches an updraft using his own underarm webs to glide through the city at a breakneck pace. It’s unclear if Peter added these to his own suit or if Miles was the only one clever enough to figure out the tech. Either way, it’s a blast for fans of the comics to see Spider-Man finally using his underarm webs, while gamers will no doubt appreciate the callback, as well.
Is Miles still channeling the Nu Form?
Fans who played through "Spider-Man: Miles Morales" will notice that the titular hero’s powers have continued to evolve. In the previous game, Miles was able to conduct electricity through his body, resulting in shocking Venom Blast attacks. In that game, this power manifested in crackling yellow and red arcs of light. Toward the end of that game, Miles nearly sacrifices himself to stop a weapon powered by highly unstable Nuform energy, absorbing the power into himself and releasing it in a blast that tragically kills his friend Phin. As the energy from the reactor arcs into Miles’ arms, it glows a peculiar bright blue.
Flash forward to "Spider-Man 2," and now the younger Spider-Man is using what the official PlayStation Blog refers to as "Miles’ newfound blue bioelectric powers." Is it possible that the Nuform reactor has made a permanent change to Miles’ power set? Could that even be healthy for the fledgling Web-Slinger? Perhaps the new game will explore the implications of this blue-hued energy and the effect it may have on our hero.
Pete’s getting rough with civilians
Peter and Miles always make it a point to look out for their fellow New Yorkers, even in the heat of battle. Both preceding games feature numerous scenes in which the two Spider-Men rescue innocent bystanders during various villainous attacks. The first game, in fact, even opens with Peter helping some civilians out from under burning debris in the Kingpin’s tower. With this in mind, one particular moment in the gameplay previous illustrates just how much the Symbiote is changing Peter’s personality.
After Peter rashly tosses one of Kraven’s drones into a helicopter, the airship falls to the ground, exploding and endangering the civilians on the ground. Though Peter and Miles frantically rescue all of the folks below, Peter seems almost irritated to be distracted from chasing down the Lizard. Nowhere is this more obvious than the moment when he aggressively chucks one of the rescued people on the ground, then turns to rush back into battle. Miles doesn’t make a big deal out of it in the moment, but it appears pretty obvious that he’s taken aback by Peter’s dismissive toss.
What big teeth you have!
Bid farewell to our Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man and say hello to an, erm, overly aggressive and gravelly-voiced Parker?
The gameplay trailer clearly shows that Parker has bonded somehow with a Symbiote, most likely the one that will one day become Venom. Based on the end of the previous game, we may be able to surmise this is the same Symbiote that was keeping Harry alive. It’s unclear how Peter has gotten his hands on it, but it has already started to change him in interesting ways.
First, there are all the new abilities, like how he can now split his arms into rope-like tendrils to pummel his enemies. There’s also his gruffer voice and aggressive demeanor. However, this may actually only be the beginning of his transformation. Near the end of the gameplay trailer, Peter tells Miles that he’s going after the Lizard alone. Miles is understandably nervous and asks, "You sure? He’s got big teeth."
Peter doesn’t miss a beat. "So do I." Once Parker is gone, Ganke asks Miles, "Um…he’s not normally like that, right?" Miles replies that his mentor definitely is not like this all the time, alluding to a greater transformation in the works. Why? Because so far, Peter doesn’t have the big fangs that Venom is known for. Not yet, anyway.
Venom’s eyes have it
Sony Interactive Entertainment
The behavioral changes are bad enough, but one small transformation to Peter’s appearance also seems to hint at a much greater (and scarier) mutation on the way. Right as Peter makes the comment about having "big teeth" of his own, his mask makes a slight change on its own: The edges sharpen just a bit, with a divot forming at the corners that almost look like a furrowed brow.
If this alteration looks familiar at all, it’s because it looks like the black suit has taken one more step towards resembling Venom as we know and fear him. If Peter doesn’t take the suit off soon, there may not be anything left of the man who helped train Miles to be the hero he is today. Some fans are already counting on Peter to not realize his mistake before it’s too late, with some even theorizing that he’ll become Venom before the game is over, forcing a confrontation with Miles.
"He’s got big teeth."
"So do I."
THEORY: Similar in the Ultimate comics, Peter is going to become Venom in Marvel’s Spider-Man 2. Harry (or Eddie) could still end up becoming Venom at some point, but the shift in lenses shape tells me that Peter is going to become a MONSTER! 🕷️ pic.twitter.com/OKpwtaeE6k
— Evan Filarca (@EvanFilarca) May 25, 2023
This would definitely break from comics tradition, in which Eddie Brock is typically presented as Venom’s first (and most famous) true host (or at least, the first to take the name). But it could make for an extremely compelling and personal story for our two Spider-Men. Fans will have to wait till this fall to see what happens in the battle for Peter’s soul.