Prior to 2017’s Marvel’s Spider-Man, the lineage of Spidey’s games has been a mixed bag of Green Goblin Bombs.
While Activision did give us some great gems such as Spider-Man (PS1), Spider-Man 2, Ultimate Spider-Man, and Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions, more often than not the games launched to mixed reviews. Sure, they would sell to the public but across the industry, Marvel Games didn’t have the respect that say, the Marvel Cinematic Universe demands.
Marvel was ready to change their image. They wanted Marvel Films and Marvel Games to both be highly respected and anticipated. So Jay Ong, Vice President of Marvel Games in 2014, went to Activision and brokered a deal to get out of the current contract they had between the two companies.
There was an exchange afterwards, with the Activision rep asking what they were going to do with the Spider-Man/Marvel games IP.
Jay: “I’m going to find a better home for it.“
To which they responded: “Good luck finding your unicorn.“
O U C H.
After their split with Activision, Jay and his team at Marvel Games began their search for that ‘unicorn’, offering both Microsoft & Sony the chance to make exclusive content. Microsoft ultimately turned down a possible deal to focus on their own IPs. Which isn’t a bad thing. Why put all that time and resources into someone else’s property when you build your own?
Well, when you combine all the copies of the PlayStation x Marvel exclusives (Spider-Man, Miles Morales, Spider-Man Remastered, and Iron Man VR) have sold so far, Sony has an (estimated) 30 million reasons to be happy that Adam Boyes and John Drake presented Jay with the idea for a Spider-Man PlayStation exclusive title back in 2014. The game, Marvel’s Spider-Man, changed the fortune of longtime business partner Insomniac Games, as after almost two decades of working together, was purchased by Sony, becoming part of the PlayStation Studios family.
Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 and Marvel’s Wolverine are both in active development at Insomniac Games as their continued partnership seems to be stronger than ever. Plus who knows what kind of further deals the two media giants might have coming our way in the future? Has Microsoft since been offered another chance at making an Xbox exclusive title? With the Summer gaming expo upcoming we could have some new surprises!
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