A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
The tagline of the game is "Be greater. Be yourself," which is part of the journey Miles goes through as he embraces his responsibility and his place as Spider-Man. Helping those in need, protecting the innocent, taking pride in your neighborhood, believing in yourself, and making sure that everyone gets a fair shot are just some of the initial themes that pop up. There's also lots of emphasis on friendship, family (including people that you decide to make part of your family, even if they're not related to you), and improving the lives of others. Even moments of reconciliation and redemption pop up across the story as well.
Positive Role Models
Miles is a young kid that's trying to grow into his own as Spider-Man (or a Spider-Man with different abilities). He's a kind, caring kid that's interested in helping out his community and taking care of people, which is something he's also taken to heart after the death of his father. He and his friend, Ganke, do their best to help people across all of New York, preventing crimes and saving people in need. Even Peter Parker pops in via training missions and messages to give Miles support. Miles is anchored by his mother, who's a strong woman running for political office, and his neighborhood is incredibly diverse, featuring Latinx, Black, LGBTQ+, and disabled characters in prominent roles.
Ease of Play
Controls are easy to learn, and are similar to other action games, especially the previous Spider-Man title. There's a range of difficulty levels, which will affect combat and the challenge when facing opponents. The largest challenge at times comes in completing some trials under a certain time limit, which requires perfect, split second (or even millisecond) timing to finish.
Violence & Scariness
Fighting is a regular occurrence in the game, with enemies getting punched, kicked, and slammed. Miles can use electrical abilities to provide additional power to attacks and break through enemy defenses. Players can also launch various environmental objects and enemy weapons back at them to cause damage. Enemies fire weapons, use swords, and grenades to cause damage or threaten people, with some buildings set on fire. Characters are shown scraped and in various states of distress after battle, with cuts and blood. No gore is shown, although some blood appears if characters are shot. One scene shows a character beaten while tied to a chair.
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"S--t" and "A--hole" pop up in dialogue.
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Products & Purchases
This is the Sequel to 2018's Marvel's Spider-Man. Both Miles and Peter Parker, along with other characters, have appeared in comics, TV shows, movies, toys, and more. No downloadable content currently available, although there are clearly plot points for possible future story expansion.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
There are some missions where characters discuss drug deals or drug smuggling. Drug materials can be seen in some missions, even though they're fake items from the Spider-Man universe.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales is an action adventure game for the PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and Windows PCs. The game, which is a sequel to 2018's Marvel's Spider-Man, casts players as Miles Morales as he grows into his powers as Spider-Man and defends New York from a variety of threats. Combat, like many comic book games, occurs frequently, and players will use punches and kicks, as well as webbing and electrical attacks, to defeat enemies. Enemies use firearms and explosives to attack characters as well, with some blood shown if people are shot. There's a scene where a character is tied to a chair and beaten, and some people are shown with cuts and injuries as a result of fights. "S--t" and "a--hole" can be heard in dialogue, and while there are some references to drug deals and drug items, these are fictional drugs set in the Spider-Man universe. On the other hand, this game features a strong amount of diversity across its spectrum of heroes and villains, embracing Black, Latinx, LGBTQ+, and disabled characters, while also promoting strong and positive themes like being yourself, helping others, and taking pride in your neighborhood.
Is It Any Good?
This action game builds on the success of the previous title, and thrusts a new hero into the spotlight with a familiar, yet fresh spin on the wallcrawler. It's notable to see elements that have carried over as the Spidey story has continued in Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales. For example, if you swing by Fisk Plaza, you'll see it boarded up due to the Kingpin's arrest in the first game. You'll still see plenty of car chases, muggings, or crimes for Spidey to stop as he swings through the city, providing him experience to improve his skills. Thanks to Peter's training (furthered by a series of holographic challenges scattered around the city), Miles works on his combat, stealth, and traversal skills as he grows into his role as Spider-man. Initially, he starts with defending his neighborhood, but he expands that focus to the rest of New York City. Over time, he discovers and embraces his new abilities, like his powerful electrical Venom strikes that stun opponents or his camouflage powers that give him an extra advantage in landing stealthy takedowns of enemies. Chaining these moves together becomes seamless, and as you gain additional abilities and skills, you start to feel like the superhero as well. Similarly, this feeling carries over to web swinging through the city, thanks to the DualSense controller, where you actually feel the tension of your webs as you swoop through the streets based on how tightly you pull the triggers. It's incredibly immersive, and helps to draw you in as you move from one place to the other. This riveting gameplay is just as solid in the Windows port of the game, which features PC optimized graphics, a range of monitor setup support for gaming rigs, and native Dualsense controller support for computers. This port is virtually seamless, with perhaps just a bit of a load time for scene transitions that are longer than the console versions. Even better, if you have a Steam Deck, you can take the webslinging adventure on the go, which looks and feels incredible on the portable device.
But the thing about the Spider-Man character has always been the emotions and heart that the young man feels in balancing his superhero duties and his alter ego life. Miles, like Peter Parker, is trying to figure out his path: he's moved to a new neighborhood, with new friends and a new school. He's still dealing with the loss of his father. And he's got awesome responsibility as a new superhero. Without spoiling any plot points, the game does an incredible job of capturing his inner struggle as Miles comes into his own as Spidey over the course of the game. His self-doubt and confusion about what to do is replaced over time with faith in his abilities and a swagger that's confident without being cocky. This is coupled with the significant positive messages that are presented from start to finish. From the tagline of "Be Yourself. Be Greater," to Miles' incredible support system of his best friend Ganke, who's constantly motivating and helping him during missions, the game pushes Miles (and by extension, the player) to do good deeds and be a positive force in the world. What's great is that as the game goes on, the people in Miles' neighborhood are won over from being cynical about Miles as a knockoff to being someone fighting for them, going so far as to claim him during a pivotal moment by stating that, "He's OUR Spider-Man." It's just one of the feel good moments that lands perfectly without feeling forced or hokey. The biggest issue that arises in Miles Morales is that the game is somewhat on the shorter end. There aren't nearly the same amount of villains as the previous game, and if you're a veteran of action games, you'll probably fly through some of the content quickly. But don't let that throw you off – this title is a great showpiece for the PlayStation 5 or Windows PCs, and easily lays the groundwork for future downloadable content and sequels for this franchise.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.