Marvel's Spider-Man 2 swung onto PS5 consoles on October 20, expanding the environment from Manhattan across the bridges to Queens and Brooklyn. This means that Insomniac Games had the opportunity to increase the number of Spider-Man 2 side missions that were available, and they did not disappoint.
In fact, despite the core Spider-Man 2 story offering some excellent character moments, the heart and soul of Spidey's new adventure lies within those side quests. If you're playing and haven't opened up the Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man (FNSM) app, you're missing out.
Some of the best stories are in the Spider-Man 2 side missions, adding a lot of heart and soul to this game that I wasn't expecting, cementing it on my personal list as among the greatest Spider-Man games of all time.
Spider-Man's Greatest Power Has Always Been Helping the Average Person
Spider-Man has been my favorite superhero for as long as I can remember. A lot of that can be attributed to the '90s cartoon, but Peter Parker has an ineffable capacity for helping the average New Yorker with the same unbridled enthusiasm as he has for taking on the city's most powerful villains.
One of the earliest FNSM requests I took on was tracking down a woman's lost grandfather. He has dementia, and a woman named Tasha asks Spider-Man to track his whereabouts.
When you locate Grandpa Earl in Prospect Park in Brooklyn, you get an extremely touching cutscene where he tells Spider-Man the story of how he proposed to his wife so many years ago.
In what can be assumed is a rare cognizant moment for the character, he tells Spider-Man not only about the love of his life, but his awareness of his disease as well. It's emblematic of what people around the world go through every day, and I love that it's a story that gets highlighted in Spider-Man 2.
This side mission can be tackled as either Miles or Peter, and each character is treated to slightly different dialogue to correspond to where they are in life.
Spider-Man 2 Side Mission Helps a Blind Woman Get the Best Guide Dog
The FNSM app request for Monster in Queens is a Spider-Man 2 side mission that leads to a blind woman named Alba sitting on her porch. In talking to her you learn two things: something has been getting into her garden, and she's not able to have a guide dog because of her allergies.
Take on this mission and you'll find a Hunter Beast with an arrow protruding from its side. Ganke is able to hack the machine and upload countless videos of playful dogs to help tame it. The Hunter Beast's name is F1D0, and its owner had tried to destroy it to cover up a murder.
This side quest not only helps a blind woman in need get the guide dog she deserves, but it flips the script on who the real enemies in Spider-Man 2 are.
I wasn't expecting to feel sympathy for the machines that have been trying to kill me, but that's the power of a well-written Spider-Man 2 side mission. It's no wonder this game scored so well in TechRaptor's Spider-Man 2 review.
Don't Miss Out on the Sensory-Defying Experience to Play as Hailey
The Spider-Man 2 side mission Graffiti Trouble follows Miles in tracking down a graffiti artist who is tagging walls around Brooklyn. Before he can begin his investigation, however, Hailey greets him to tell him more about what happened, enabling you to play as Hailey during the events of earlier that day.
Playing as a deaf character immediately tunes the player into the sensation of the DualSense haptics, as all sound is muted around you. You can feel the vibration of your footsteps and other movement as you explore.
Since no dialogue is audible, the NPCs around Hailey display emoticons to give you an idea of what they're saying. The sensory show continues when you find a graffiti tag that you need to spray over, shaking the controller to shake the can of spray paint. This repeats a few times, with Hailey exploring a construction site and even befriending a cat along the way.
When the graffiti artist is located, Hailey helps her paint a big mural and invites her to her art club, which the artist accepts, introducing herself as Kayla. This Spider-Man 2 side mission was equal parts touching and unexpected, allowing me to experience this world through the eyes of a character whose abilities contrast incredibly from Miles and Peter.
Insomniac Games doesn't shy away from including a diverse and unique cast in their games, and having Hailey be playable in Marvel's Spider-Man 2 puts the player directly in the shoes of exploring the world through the eyes of a deaf person. This change of perception, if only for a moment, shines a light on how different people experience everyday events.
All Spider-Man 2 Side Missions & Stories Are Worth Experiencing
Though the main missions in Marvel's Spider-Man 2 offer plenty to do and experience, it's the extra content scattered across the boroughs of New York City that make it such a delight to play. Those mainlining the critical path without taking the time for any of the additional missions are missing out on a lot.
Don't be afraid to take your time with Marvel's Spider-Man 2. Just because Peter and Miles can swing through the city faster than ever before doesn't mean you shouldn't take the extra few minutes to explore the sites along the way.
You never know who you might meet or what you'll get up to.