The Altered Fast Travel System in Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 Evokes Mixed Feelings

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The Altered Fast Travel System in Marvel's Spider-Man 2 Evokes Mixed Feelings

Insomniac consistently pushes the boundaries of technology with each new game, setting a high standard for what players can expect from current-gen gaming experiences. Furthermore, their latest titles not only showcase impressive technological advancements but also serve as a foundation for what future Insomniac games could bring to the table. For instance, while Ratchet and Clank: Rift Apart introduced a remarkable portal-warping mechanic and lightning-fast load times, Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 has taken load time efficiency to the next level, particularly when switching between Spider-Men and utilizing fast travel.

During PlayStation’s recent State of Play event, fans got a firsthand look at just how rapid these load times are on the PS5. A brief cinematic featuring Peter Parker exercising on the side of a building seamlessly transitioned into playable gameplay when players switched to him from Miles Morales. Moreover, fast travel has undergone a significant transformation, allowing players to select any point on the map for quick transportation. However, it appears that unlocking fast travel in a particular district may require completing specific activities first. This revamped fast travel system not only streamlines the process but also renders one charming aspect of the original Marvel’s Spider-Man game somewhat outdated.

Marvel’s Spider-Man 2’s Fast Travel is a Sign of the Times

Marvel’s Spider-Man 2’s Fast Travel is a Sign of the Times

The improvements made to fast travel in Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 undeniably represent a significant leap forward in terms of functionality. Achieving near-instantaneous load times is the primary objective, and Insomniac has certainly delivered in an industry where extended loading screens and other immersion-breaking elements have faced criticism from fans.

Games like Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order or Final Fantasy 7 Remake have drawn attention for the frequency of their loading screens, especially in their recent iterations on the PS5. While the PS5 boasts impressive hardware, it seems that its full potential as a current-gen console has yet to be fully realized.

Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 aims to address this issue by providing instantaneous fast travel and seamless protagonist-swapping. Once players have unlocked fast travel, one standout feature is the elimination of the need to select a specific landmark, as was required in the previous Marvel’s Spider-Man game. This streamlined approach enhances the overall gaming experience and aligns with the industry’s ongoing quest for smoother, more immersive gameplay.

Spider-Man’s Fast Travel Cinematics Will Be Missed

Marvel’s Spider-Man’s Fast Travel Cinematics Will Be Missed

Certainly, Insomniac’s previous approach to fast travel had its own unique charm, and it’s something that will be missed, regardless of how seamless and quick fast travel has become in Marvel’s Spider-Man 2. In the original Marvel’s Spider-Man game, fast travel involved a clever representation of Spider-Man riding the subway, with various cinematic sequences showing Spider-Man in different positions on the train. These sequences, while fairly brief, added a nice touch to the game and maintained immersion during what would typically be loading screens.

Fast travel was never an absolute necessity in Marvel’s Spider-Man because swinging through the city was exhilarating and efficient in itself. However, these enjoyable cinematics made it a worthwhile option for players who didn’t want to manually traverse the entire expanse of Manhattan. It’s safe to say that while many players may not prefer these cinematics over the lightning-fast load times that instantly transport them or switch protagonists, Insomniac made the most of the technology available at the time.

As Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 moves forward as a PS5-exclusive title, it’s worth recognizing and appreciating the efforts made by Insomniac to enhance the gaming experience and adapt to the capabilities of the new console.

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