Spider-Man 2 (PS5): Unveiling the Identity of Peter Parker


With Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 just around the corner, it’s time to look at one of our favorite Spider-Men: Peter Parker. Played by Yuri Lowenthal, this version of Peter Parker is crafted by Ratchet and Clank studio Insomniac Games. Known as Insomniac Spider-Man, his suit’s been featured in many films, with Peter himself even making an appearance in 2023’s smash hit Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse. This comprehensive guide will tell you all you should know about our pun-shouting, web-slinging New Yorker.

As expected, this guide covers everything in the Marvel’s Spider-Man series, so if you don’t want to be spoiled, I suggest playing the games or watching a lets-play of it before reading. Destructoid’s Chris Carter rated Marvel’s Spider-Man a 9 in his glowing review, citing Insomniac’s strong direction and fun traversal through New York. In his Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales review, Chris also gives the game a 9 as it charts a bold start for the future of the series. Now, without further ado, let’s swing into action, shall we?

Background Information

Image via Insomniac Games/PlayStation

Peter Parker, the first iteration of Spider-Man, was introduced in Amazing Fantasy #15 by Marvel Comics (specifically Steve Ditko and Stan Lee) in 1962. Given his own series in 1963 called The Amazing Spider-Manthe character rose to fame to become one of the biggest and most recognizable superheroes of all time. Peter Parker is the most notable Spider-Man, being adapted into three live-action film series across the years.

After his parents’ death, Peter Parker moved in with Uncle Ben and Aunt May in Queens. There, he met his lifelong best friends, Mary Jane Watson and Harry Osborn, and fell in love with science, a passion that grew even more due to famed scientist Dr. Otto Octavius. During a science presentation at age 15, a radioactive spider bit him. He started to become stronger and more flexible, as well as developing a natural danger radar called his ‘spider-sense’. After Uncle Ben’s avoidable death at the hands of a mugger, Peter took to a life of crime-fighting in hopes of making him proud, living by a saying of his: “With great power comes great responsibility.”

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As a character, Peter Parker has a heart of gold. Willing to do anything for people, he keeps the streets of New York safe from crime. Gifted in the sciences, Peter uses his smarts to evaluate situations thoroughly and think on the fly. While superhero-ing can be grueling, he makes the most out of it, cracking jokes and doing aerial tricks. Comedy acts as his comforter, using it in stressful situations to lighten the mood. Add to that his advanced physical abilities and spider-like powers, he makes for an amazing Spider-Man.

Insomniac’s Version

Image via PlayStation

Backstory and Personality

In Marvel’s Spider-Manit’s established that this version of Peter Parker has been Spider-Man for eight years. He also works for Dr. Otto Octavius, who would later become Doctor Octopus. In the past, he did photography for The Daily Bugle under J. Jonah Jameson but quit after he blamed Spider-Man for a massacre done by Shocker. On that topic, most of the villains in the game are ones he’s faced before, like Rhino, Scorpion, Black Cat, and Electro. Because of that, his attitude towards them is more lax, likely to make quips and joke around. Of course, once Doctor Octopus and Mister Negative, newcomers for him, enter the picture, he gets more serious.

Relationships

In terms of relationships, he helps his Aunt May at FEAST and ensures she gets rest, despite him being the one who needs it. Peter also befriends Miles Morales, son of the late Officer Jefferson Davis, whom Spider-Man helped to take down a Demon-infested warehouse. Miles turns out to be more important to Peter than expected, as he develops similar powers to Spider-Man. The two bond over their shared connection and now both share the title of Spider-Man. Romantically, Peter is on/off with childhood best friend Mary Jane Watson. The two broke up due to the dangers of their jobs, but still talk to each other frequently. Still, the two catch feelings for each other at times. Peter also had a small fling with petty thief Black Cat.

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Voice Actor

Bringing Peter Parker to life in Marvel’s Spider-Man is veteran voice actor Yuri Lowenthal. He broke onto the scene with Prince in Prince of Persia: Sands of Time and has continued to be at the top of his game since. Notable roles include Yusuke in Persona 4Sasuke in the Naruto franchise, and Marth in various Fire Emblem games. After playing the protagonist in Insomniac’s Sunset OverdriveYuri was offered the role of Peter Parker. It wouldn’t be his first time as the web-slinger, as he’d played him for various Marvel-focused games. However, this version was unique to Yuri, as he got to motion-capture for the role, which was written with him in mind.

Comparisons between Versions

Screenshot via PlayStation YouTube

Time

No two Peter Parkers are same. While that can’t be said about all versions of Spider-Man, Peter’s story changes with each iteration. Usually, we see the character starting to become Spider-Man and how he grows into a great hero. Here, he’s already done that, so we can jump right into the story without much of an origin story. This approach is similar to the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s take on the webbed hero, as Tom Holland’s version has been in the superhero game for a year or so.

Narrative and Backstory

The story the games tell isn’t based on any existing comics. However, some elements do stay consistent. In Peter’s case, his love of science and photography background stay the same. Furthermore, Insomniac pushes Peter’s love of science further than other versions, as he works in Otto’s lab. Unfortunately, he also loses his parents and Uncle Ben. He also loses Aunt May, a character that rarely dies in other media. To add to that, Peter’s work with Otto caused him to become Doctor Octopus. All of these events nag at Peter, as he feels guilty about them.

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Relationships

Depending on the version, Peter does end up with Mary Jane. While Marvel’s Spider-Man doesn’t exactly have the two get back together, the story could go that way in the future. However, another romantic interest of Peter’s, Gwen Stacy, may enter the picture. Her father, George Stacy, is a Captain in the NYPD, so perhaps we may see him before Gwen enters.

Miles is an interesting one, as he and Peter don’t work together until later in Miles’ comic series, as Peter seemingly dies before the story starts. Only after he reveals himself to be alive does Spider-Man become Spider-Men. Insomniac opted for a version where Peter is very much alive and the two work side-by-side to face New York’s rogue gallery.

Connections to Marvel

One of the more obvious subtractions for Insomniac’s Spider-Man series and Peter’s story, as far as we know, is other Marvel heroes. The Avengers Tower, as well as Doctor Strange’s Sanctum Sanctorum, do appear in the game as landmarks, but there’s no mention of the characters themselves. Realistically, due to trademarks and such, it makes sense that no other Marvel superheroes appear. Plus, from a writing perspective, it’s better to establish characters as their own before bringing in other more developed characters, like Iron Man or Mister Fantastic. However, as revealed in 2021’s PlayStation Showcase, Insomniac is working on a Wolverine game. Despite the game’s early development, easter eggs for it may be in Marvel’s Spider-Man 2as it, too, was announced at that showcase.

Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 swings onto PlayStation 5 on October 20, 2023.

Michael Murphy

Freelance Writer – A lifelong gamer and writer, as of 2023, Michael can now say he writes about video games for a living. He likes to write about the newest AAA titles, RPGs, action-adventures, and narrative-driven games

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