After what feels like a personal attack on your ol’ pal Zane, Marvel’s Avengers developers Crystal Dynamics has felt a wave of backlash for their recent announcement that Spider-Man will be appearing in the game exclusively on the PS4 and PS5. Alienating two thirds of your fans will do that. As expected, Crystal Dynamics addressed the controversy with a (non)explanation for this inclusion/exclusion. Scot Amos had the unfortunate job of having to explain this by saying, “Spider-Man is a unique opportunity for us because of the relationship that PlayStation and Marvel have,” and that “That is the only character that we are doing that way.” Basically, only PlayStation 4 and 5 will have exclusive characters.
Now for a “back in my day” moment. I recall playing Soulcalibur II on the GameCube. That game had exclusive characters for each platform; GameCube had Link from The Legend of Zelda, PS2 had Heihachi Mishima from Tekken, and Xbox had Spawn. That’s how you do it! You can have exclusivity while maintaining equal treatment. Now, back to Marvel’s Avengers. If it is worth putting all that extra effort into making Spider-Man work for just PS4, then why not have an exclusive character for Xbox One, Stadia, and PC? Like Captain Marvel, Wolverine, or Black Panther? I get Sony wanting to keep Spider-Man out of the MCU and having a console exclusive game like Marvel’s Spider-Man, but this game already exists for multiple platforms. It just seems very deliberate and mean-spirited and Crystal Dynamics seems okay with that, and I don’t know which is worse.
When asked about how PC, Stadia, and Xbox One players should feel about this deal, Amos said, “I would say that Marvel’s Avengers has a lot of heroes, and with the scope and the breadth of this game and this universe, players are going to have their hands full with a lot to play with. And as we have just announced with Hawkeye, there are more heroes to come. So this is an opportunity to celebrate (Spider-Man’s addition) uniquely for those players (on PlayStation) because of that relationship, but I think there’s so much of a world for people to explore, I wouldn’t look as that as a reason not to embrace it (the opportunity to add Spider-Man on PS4 and PS5). I would say, look at all this stuff you get to play with.” So, look at what you do have and not what you are missing out on.
Crystal Dynamics says that they will be supporting and adding on to the game “for years”, so to be fair, there could be more content coming that makes Spider-Man’s exclusion from other platforms seems smaller in the long run, but the wound is fresh right now. I’m spewing all this venom, but I’m still going to buy it. Marvel’s Avengers will be out on September 4th for PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Stadia.
Where do you stand on this Spider-Man exclusivity deal? Let us know in the comments below.