Due to the success of the first game in 2018 and now with Spider-Man: Miles Morales for PS4 and PS5 (both critically and commercially), it seems a safe bet to expect a sequel in the next few years. So what can we expect from the next Spider-Man game? Well, Miles Morales does give us a strong indication as to the direction of the story, and Insomniac should be able to create something special with a full-blown sequel. So here are my predictions for what we can expect for the game in terms of story, villains and gameplay.
Be aware that this article will contain spoilers for both games, so make sure that that you’ve completed them before reading.
The end-credit scenes for both games included Peter’s best friend Harry Osborn in Norman’s secret lab suspended in some sort of liquid and surrounded by what appears to be the infamous symbiote. Therefore, it’s highly likely that the story will revolve around Harry and the consequences of Norman’s ‘treatment’.
At the end of the first game, we see Norman determined to find a cure despite the failure of ‘Devil’s Breath’, then at the end of Miles Morales, Norman has decided that Harry has been in the tank long enough and orders Curt Connors (yes, that Curt Connors) to get him out despite his warnings. The next Spider-Man game could focus on the fallout of this decision; the symbiote may end up taking over as Harry begins to die, forcing Pete to fight his best friend, potentially resulting in the symbiote transferring to him and we could finally see the iconic black-suited Spidey. Then as the Symbiote corrupts his mind, Miles may have to turn against his ally and mentor in order to save the city. All this could provide some truly emotional stakes for our heroes as the line between friend and foe become blurred.
The trauma of these events could then lead to Norman becoming the Green Goblin, especially if Pete’s actions result in the death of Harry. There were hints towards this in the aforementioned lab in the first game as MJ can find some prototype pumpkin bombs. The events of the first game also contributed to pushing Norman closer to the edge as all his plans failed, and he was removed from office as mayor.
There are other smaller details that hint towards potential story threads or side missions in the next Spider-Man game. For example, there could be a follow up to the trip to Symkaria relating to Silver Sable, but as she was a large part of the first game and the DLC, Insomniac may not want to focus too much on her this time.
Also, throughout Miles Morales, there seemed to hints towards a possible romance between Miles and the street artist Hailey. There was definitely a flirtatious tone to their first meeting, and during a late-game side mission, she even gave him a scarf, hat and ear warmers so he wouldn’t get cold. Especially considering the fact that she was one of the people who found out that he was the famous Web-Slinger at the end of the game, it’s fair to assume that she could have a significant role in a sequel.
Speaking of Miles’ version of the Wall-Crawler, I think it would be good if he got his own unique alter-ego rather than just being referred to as ‘the other Spider-Man’ or ‘the new guy’. However, as this wasn’t really hinted at during his game, it seems unlikely as it could just seem too forced and could just complicate things unnecessarily.
As mentioned earlier, it’s likely that the Green Goblin and the Venom symbiote will be the main antagonists for the next entry. These are arguably the two biggest Spidey villains, featuring in dozens of comics (for over 50 years) as well as many animated shows and live-action blockbusters. Leading up to the release of the PS4 title, ‘Gobby’ and Venom were two of the most requested villains as well. Insomniac are also clearly huge Marvel fans, and they know that these two characters would be great for a Spider-Man game, but they obviously want to give them the proper time and attention that they deserve so by centring the sequel around them it would allow for fully-fledged backstories and character development. Plus, they would be a huge selling point to get people to buy the game.
Then there’s the big name drop of Curt Connors in the Miles Morales end-credit scene. The Lizard is also one of Spidey’s major villains and was only teased in the first game. The main reference to the Lizard was related to one of Peter’s backpack collectibles, where he explained that he used his blood to create a cure, but it didn’t last. So it was fair to assume that Curt/The Lizard was still at large somewhere; however, it seems as though Norman and Curt have been working together for some time. Perhaps Curt is helping Harry in exchange for a cure for his reptilian condition or maybe just for help hiding from the authorities/ the Web-Head. Nevertheless, he will surely be a large part of the sequel because a character like that isn’t going to stay quiet for long.
A proper sequel will, of course, have room for more villains compared to Miles Morales. Insomniac have already established their own versions of many classic villains that could return. One such villain who is likely to return is Kingpin. After Peter took him down and cleared out all his bases in the first game, he wasn’t really heard from again, but in the recent title, he was behind a series of side missions and app activities hinting at his attempts to leave prison and re-establish his criminal empire. If he ever does get free, he will definitely have a bone to pick with both Spider-Men.
Due to Miles’ bio-electric venom powers, it would be very interesting to see him face off with Electro. We all know that breakouts in comic book prisons are suspiciously common, so the chances that Electro will need to be taken down again are high. It would be a good face-off between Electro’s electricity power and Miles’ bio-electric venom abilities. Could they cancel each other out? or combine to cause catastrophic collateral damage?
If we’re talking about returning villains, it’s hard to ignore the main antagonist of the first game, Doctor Octopus. He is clearly very angry due to his defeat by Spider-Man, and he’s unlikely to stay locked up for long. The fact that he knows Pete’s secret identity is only going to cause trouble, and I’d be shocked if he isn’t even mentioned again.
Now that we have two fully establish Spider-Men, there are a few options for how the next game could work, gameplay-wise. Firstly the game could swap between you playing as Miles and Peter. Certain missions could be Miles-only, and vice versa, or perhaps both are present, and the game switches at certain points. Think of it as the opening mission to Marvel’s Avengers, where you play short sections as each hero.
Another possibility is that the game could let the player choose who they want to play as. Some missions may require you to be a specific Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man, but others could give the player a choice. Perhaps it could work similarly to Assassin’s Creed Syndicate (as mentioned by Game Rant), where each character has different skills and weaknesses and thus would perform better or worse in different situations.
Alternatively, Insomniac could take a multiplayer co-op approach. So you could matchmake with a random player or play with a friend with one person playing as Peter and the other as Miles. This would mean that both Spideys will be active all the time in every mission, which perhaps wouldn’t always make the most narrative sense. However, a co-op open-world web-swinging game could potentially be incredible, but on the other hand, it could turn away players who want a single-player focused experience.
An interesting take could actually be Miles vs. Peter. As discussed earlier, if the Venom symbiote infects Peter’s mind, he would likely become more aggressive, hateful and could start being less of a hero. Therefore at some point in the story, Miles would have to turn against him. This could still be multiplayer if done correctly, but it would be difficult to keep this going seamlessly for a large portion of the game. A single-player focus could mean that we get this dynamic for longer, which would provide a very unique experience for the player and would be different from the previous Spider-Man games.
If Insomniac does go down the co-op path between the two Spideys, either multiplayer or single-player, there will need to be a balance between what each character can do. On many levels, both characters have the same abilities, but it’s in the ways that they differ where the balance must be. Peter has been a hero for nine years by the end of Miles Morales, and it could be even longer whenever the next Spider-Man game is set. Therefore he has the experience and expertise about how to be a superhero. This will give him an advantage over Miles in terms of crime-fighting knowledge and how well he can use his abilities.
Whereas Miles has his electric venom abilities and camouflage. This naturally makes him a more effective fighter both in combat and stealth, and he can control the flow of electricity to access areas by manipulating generators. However, he is younger and less experienced, so he will likely make more mistakes, and perhaps his web-swinging wouldn’t be as fast or efficient. To balance out Miles’ natural combat advantages, Peter has more web gadgets to help him take down enemies and more unlockable skills.
A Full-On Sequel
Regardless of the exact direction that Insomniac goes with, the next game is surely going to be massive in terms of scope and scale. They can continue with the success of the first two games and double down on their vision for a true ‘next-gen’ experience. The title that they go with will be interesting. Miles Morales falls somewhere between a spin-off and a sequel, so they can’t really call the next game ‘Spider-Man 2‘. So they’ll likely go with a subtitle, which will undoubtedly result in a lot of discussions online whenever the game is announced.
In my opinion, the next game should be a PS5 exclusive. I’d expect a release in 2023 at the very earliest, and by that point, many people will have transitioned to next-gen, plus few other games will be releasing on PS4 anyway. By taking full advantage of the PS5’s hardware, Insomniac could potentially open the world up to include Brooklyn, Queens, New Jersey, etc. This is something that has often been requested by fans as it would be rather boring to play on the same map for three games in a row.
The next Spider-Man game can also be more innovative and varied compared to the changes made in Miles Morales. Insomniac definitely made some improvements on the first game, especially in terms of open-world activities, but the sequel can go even further. With more creative mission objectives, unlockable skills and other features the next game will surely feel like a true sequel.
Ultimately the future seems bright for Spider-Man fans on PlayStation. I’m sure that whenever a sequel is announced, all my predictions will end up being false because the developers at Insomniac are far more creative than me. Besides, no-one expected them to make a standalone Miles Morales game for PS5, and it has ended up being many people’s favourite games of the year. In the meantime, we can continue to speculate and construct theories about the future of the series.