Approval of God: Jamie Fristrom, the man responsible for Spider-Man 2's web-swinging mechanics, was given an opportunity to look at Insomniac's take on it and enjoyed what he played. A high honor considering Insomniac did look to that and other Spider-Man games for inspiration.
Ascended Fanon: The game is really called Marvel's Spider-Man. But since it is a PlayStation exclusive game, fans refer to it as Spider-Man PS4. It's gotten so popular that both Insomniac Games and Sony use the name in reference to the game.
Creator Couple: Lowenthal and Platt, who voice Peter and Yuri, are married in real life. Same goes for Willingham and Bailey, who voice Wilson Fisk and Mary Jane, respectively.
Peter Parker is about 23 during the events of the game. Yuri Lowenthal was 47 when the game came out. Ditto Mary Jane, voiced by Laura Bailey, who was 37 when game came out. And most would still agree that they both sound pretty convincing!
Nadji Jeter is about 21 years old when voicing the teenage Miles Morales.
Development Gag: The developers planned to include a mission where Spider-Man tracked Martin Li to his favorite dumpling place, but it was cut as it was - as the game's director put it - "a disaster." This is what lead to the disastrous dumpling recipe joke in-game.
A humorous example, but despite the free reign Insomniac had with the game, Marvel just refused to allow Peter or Mary Jane to say the word "balls".
As with several other recent Marvel products before 2019, there are no explicit references to X-Men and Fantastic Four for this reason. At the time, those franchises were embargoed as per Disney and Marvel's licensing issues involving movie rights to those franchises.
Look close enough though, and you might see slight subversions to this in regard to the Four's leader Reed Richards. Scenes involving Spider-Man and Otto quickly breeze over post-it notes to contact a man called "R.R" for materials and "Suit fabric ballistic".
Subverted with Deadpool (granted Deadpool 2 released the same year and was very popular with the MCU crowd, prompting Marvel to promote him). One of the backpack collectibles is a piece of paper that includes a mask similar to Deadpool's angrily crossed out as Spider-Man and Deadpool are not on good terms. Enemies may also claim Spider-Man has a skin condition under his suit, much like Deadpool who has very ugly skin.
Yuri Lowenthal revealed in a GameZone podcast that Marvel executives were very much against the idea of killing off Aunt May, and fought against the idea for months before finally relenting. Of course, Marvel not allowing Aunt May to die is nothing new, so the fact they allowed Insomniac to go through with it is impressive.
Fake Nationality: White American Tara Platt as Japanese-American Yuriko Watanabe.
Fake Russian: American Fred Tatasciore as Rhino, who this game reminds you is the Russian Aleksei Sytsevich.
The game itself is technically called Marvel's Spider-Man. But since it is a PlayStation-exclusive game, it's usually called "Spider-Man PS4" in a fan-induced case of Super Title 64 Advance. It's gotten so popular that both Insomniac Games and Sony use the name in reference to the game. Even TV Tropes uses the name for the title page to differentiate it from other Spider-Man media!
Many fans have designated this version of Spidey as "The Advanced Spider-Man" due to what the main suit of the game is labelled (The Advanced Suit). This is likely a pun on Superior Spider-Man, whose head writer (Dan Slott) was one of the co-writers (chief writers being Jon Paquette, Benjamin Arfmann, Kelsey Beachum with Spider-Man writers Christos Gage and Dan Slott also having credits). People seeing this Spidey in his appearance in Spider-Geddon instead refer to him as "PS4 Spider-Man"
The E3 2017 Demo mission was about Mr. Negative personally attacking a Fisk construction site before escaping in a helicopter, but not without showcasing his powers by launching a beam of explosive negative energy at Spidey first. In the actual game, a generic Inner Demon thug takes his place and the power is replaced by a simple rocket launcher. Also, it isn't Yuri that guides him through the mission, but rather Jefferson Davis in the final game.
The E3 2018 Raft demo originally showed Spider-Man turning to look at the leader of the Sinister Six in a bright light while in the actual game Doc Ock appears from below the building smashing Spideys hand with one of his mechanical arms in the process.
The game more or less features gameplay very similar to the Batman: Arkham Series, with perch-based stealth sections, nimble attack-counter-dodge combat, slo-mo close-up takedowns, and grappling based around aiming at ledges. Not necessarily a bad thing, given that the Arkham series is pretty much regarded as the high water mark for video games based on comic books (and a lot of Bat-fans often noted that this gameplay felt a bit more apropos for Spider-Man to start with). Heck, the developers flat out admitted they used those games as a template for this one. Again though, Tropes Are Not Bad.
The combat has also drawn comparison to the Devil May Cry series, due to its speed, heavy use of acrobatics, and Spidey's air combo resembling Dante's, except of course using his fists rather than a sword. Creative director Bryan Intihar even stated in a commentary that he is a fan of Devil May Cry, so it's possible he did take inspiration from it.
When a mystery villain was teased at the end of the E3 2018 Raft trailer, many guessed that it was going to be Doc Ock. Especially since Dan Slott helped write the game and Doc Ock is considered his signature character.
Fans were pretty quickly able to figure two of the twists of The Heist DLC: In the main quest, Black Cat lies about the Maggia having her son (who might also be Peter's) captive in order to manipulate Peter. In a side-quest, the police detective who asks for your help recovering paintings stolen by The Cat (Felicia's criminal father Walter Hardy) turns out to be Walter himself, who was likewise taking advantage of Peter's selfless nature.
Some people guessed the final DLC pack would contain a Into the Spider-Verse suit to tie into the movie.
In Memoriam: The end of the game's credits features a dedication to Spider-Man co-creator Steve Ditko, who passed away a few months before the game's release. The credits for the Silver Lining DLC includes a dedication to Stan Lee, who passed away in November of 2018.
Killer App: The Playstation 4 was already doing well, but this game helped get many fence-sitters to purchase one just to play it. It's the fastest selling and best-selling game on the console and Sony have put out affordable bundles with the game to get new consumers in. It ended up becoming the best-selling console title of 2018, and many credit both God of War PS4 and Spider-Man PS4 for allowing it to get there, beating out Nintendo Switch and Xbox One.
No symbiotes, huh, Insomniac? Venom's very brief cameo as Harry's life support says otherwise. His role however is so small that even mentioning him would likely have lead to overhyping.
Not long after Miles' reveal, journalists began to question Insomniac if Miles would also be playable and gain powers as he did in the comics. Insomniac instead deflected by stating that the story would be Peter-centric. While not a lie per se, as Miles never did become a playable Spider-Man, to the shock of many, he did have his own playable sections in the game just like Mary Jane. And naturally, the first stinger is clearly setting him up for Spider-Man-style playability in a sequel or even in the DLC, depending.
Zig-Zagged with the weather selector. Before launch, Insomniac promised that players could control the game's time of day and weather after beating the game, but only the option to alter time was included at launch. However, Insomniac has since clarified that the weather selector is still being worked on and will be part of a future patch. It still has not been added to the game by November 2020 (the same month the sequel and PS5 remaster were released) and another update for the original PS4 version was released the Sunday before Thanksgiving that year but still didnt include the option, making it doubtful that the feature will ever show up.
The Other Darrin: A rare video game example for a character model rather than a voice actor. In September 2020, Insomniac revealed that, for the PS5 remaster, the face model for Peter was recast from John Bubniak to Ben Jordan, whilst every other character in the game would be the same, and they were still using Yuri Lowenthal's voice acting, mo-cap, and facial capture work from the game's original development.
Erica Lindbeck's previous Marvel animated role is the heroic Jane Foster. Here, she's cast as Black Cat, who is an anti-hero.
Travis Willingham has had a fairly varied career, but often plays toward the more heroic side of things, with starting his career as Roy Mustang and gaining Marvel fame as Thor, among other roles like Knuckles and King Roland. Wilson Fisk is an uncommon leading villain role for him.
Stephanie Lemelin as Screwball is a surprise since she's more known for good characters like Artemis.
Brian Bloom often plays heroic characters, such as B.J. Blazkowicz, or even within Marvel itself, he voiced the good 'ol Captain America in severalworks. Here, he plays the cold mercenary villain Taskmaster.
The game has many striking similarities to the various Spider-Man films from both Sam Raimi, Marc Webb, and even the MCU. There's Spider-Man established to have been a superhero for a while like the MCU incarnation, though longer, making him more like the Sam Raimi incarnation, the story features Dr. Otto Octavius creating his Doc Ock tentacles like Spider-Man 2 (though initially funded by Norman rather than Harry), Spider-Man tries to stop a subway train like in Spider-Man 2, halfway through the plot switches to one involving the main villain planning to poison the city from a tall skyscraper with an antidote that Spider-Man needs to disperse to cure it like The Amazing Spider-Man and its game, and even pulls in some influence from the Netflix Daredevil show with Wilson Fisk resembling that show's version of him both physically and in terms of how much power he apparently has in New York City. Hell, even the ending dialogue with Octavius is near-identical to the dialogue with Green Goblin from the first Spider-Man movie. There's even some scraps of what Sony planned to do with Spider-Man as a franchise after The Amazing Spider-Man 2 by having the Sinister Six in the game. However, the game does its best to mix things up.
Otto's role in the plot is almost identical to that of Curt Connors from the first Amazing movie in that both are looking for a cure to a condition they have (neurological disorder/missing limb, respectively), both act as mentors to Peter who ends up inadvertently helping turn them into villains, both have their work stolen by Norman Osborn after working for him (directly/indirectly) who's seeking a cure for a family condition (Harry's/his own), both go insane after gaining their powers, both poison the city for vaguely well-intentioned reasons, both have almost the exact same climactic battle on top of the OsCorp building (complete with spire), and both end up in jail at the end rather than being killed.
Becomes Hilarious in Hindsight with the first Amazing Spider-Man movie's suit getting added into the PS5 remaster.
In Persona 4, Lowenthal voiced Yosuke Hanamura and Bailey voiced Rise Kujikawa. Matthew Mercer took over as Kanji Tatsumi in later additions to the franchise.
in Persona 5, William Salyers voices Toranosuke Yoshida, Mercer voices Yusuke Kitagawa, Erica Lindbeck voices Futaba Sakura, and Keith Silverstein voices Masayoshi Shido. As an added bonus, Lindbeck's and Silverstein's roles mirror their characters in Persona 5, with a thief trying to steal from a Big Bad.
Screwed by the Lawyers: The developers wanted to include the "Charging Bull" and "Fearless Girl" statues in the game's version of Times Square, but were refused. The developers opted to replace it with a statue of Lockjaw.
Yuri Lowenthal and Nadji Jeter almost didn't reprise their roles of Peter and Miles, with AJ LocascioandZeno Robinson being some of the respective, potential candidates.
As revealed in the files, there was going to be an unlockable Spider-Cop suit in the game, and its abilities were to summon backup cops and a donut drone to help in combat. While the suit is fully-modeled, it doesn't have any animations.