In participation with Titan Books, Marvel has released Marvel's Spider-Man: The Art of the Game. This beautiful hardcover features pages upon pages of behind-the-scenes images (including this Mary Jane Watson art!) and stories covering the making of the hit PS4 exclusive. There's concept art of Spidey's suits, the villains he faces, and many of Peter Parker's brand new gadgets. The photos are paired with insight directly from the artists and developers who brought the wall-crawler back to consoles in a big way. Even for those without a PS4, Spider-Man fans will all agree this art book is a must-have.
Developer Insomniac's Marvel's Spider-Man is undoubtedly one of the biggest games of the year. It sold 3.3 million copies in the first three days of release, topping the already massive record set by God of War earlier this year - becoming the fastest-selling PlayStation exclusive of all-time. It has a bit of a ways to go before it passes the 5 million total, but with three waves of planned DLC to release this year alone, that milestone is just a matter of time. Despite a few glitches here and there, the game is a joy to play, which is reflected in its 87 Metacritic score.
As for the amazing visuals and conceptual design of Spider-Man PS4, we have several more exclusive images to share! Warning: Story spoilers ahead in our discussion of each image.
Insomniac went through a ton of Spider-Man suit designs before landing on the now iconic advanced suit that is featured throughout most of the game and marketing materials. The above photo shows a peek behind the curtain on the process of designing the suit. The note reads "Can we get the most center ring to be more symmetrical like the current suit?" The note is then applied to a color and black-and-white model of the mask, highlighting a small, but significant change.
The opening act of Marvel's Spider-Man is one of its greatest strengths. Though it functions as a tutorial of sorts, explaining key combat elements like Spider-sense and combos, it throws the player right into the action. Their job: take down Wilson Fisk as he attempts to escape custody. The concept art above shows a brief encounter from this section. There are armed guards, slightly destructible environments, and some stunning textures. Luckily, as though who've played the game know, this attention to detail was not lost in the final product.
While Fisk's men might be the enemy at the start of the game, the most common foe Spidey will encounter are the Demons. Led by Mister Negative, these well-dressed henchmen are slightly stronger than your average criminal. A few even wield weapons imbued with Mister Negative's powers, making them extra difficult to take down. Above we can see some early drawings of the demons and their phenomenally detailed masks. Though the style from this drawing is a bit more cartoon-inspired, the overall design matches the game exactly. The Brute version of the demons is notably a bit larger than his in-game counterpart, but it's difficult to say by how much.
This photo is interesting. It clearly takes place in the aftermath of the demon's attack on Jefferson Davis' medal ceremony. But it features a scene that never occurs: Peter Parker performing Spider-Man level heroics to assist the survivors of the bombing. This scene was likely replaced with Miles Morales' playable section, where he attempts to find his father and take down Martin Li. It makes sense that this was cut; though several characters learn of Spider-Man's true identity, it remains a secret from the whole of New York. A display of his powers in civilian clothes might have changed that.
Alternatively, this photo may depict Miles Morales first learning of his powers. If this is the case, it is a huge departure from the game, which only sees Miles climbing walls in a short post-credits scene. Perhaps Insomniac intended for Miles to be a playable character throughout, but changed gears midway through after realizing time and budget constraints. Regardless, playing as Miles will definitely be a dream-realized soon, in DLC or an upcoming sequel.
This photo goes to show just how much a character design can change. While Spider-Man's suit is pretty much identical to the Advanced Suit from release, Mister Negative is a far throw from his counterpart. While the game still features a huge subway brawl-out between the web-slinger and Martin, that's where similarities end. Martin Li appears much younger here (note the hairstyle) and looks to be wearing a hoodie of sorts, as opposed to his black-and-white suit. The effects of his powers are a lot less extreme as well; just muted greys and some veins as opposed to the palette swap in-game. The final version is a much better look for the villain, so it's easy to see why they changed directions.
Due to the oddity and seeming randomness of these photos, the only possible explanation is that they are samples of graffiti art featured in the game. Insomniac did a great job at creating a living, breathing New York City and part of that was covering the skyscrapers with some colorful street art. The above samples are more artsy than the political (J. Jonah Jameson) pieces that are most often shared, so it's great to see some of the work done by some very talented people.
Marvel's Spider-Man is now available on PS4. To see these images in full detail as well as hundreds more, you can buy Marvel's Spider-Man: The Art of the Game in hardcover for about 25$ on Amazon.
Ordering info: Titan Books