Sony has owned the rights to Spider-Man dating all the way back to 1985, but it was in 2015 that Sony, Disney and Marvel signed an agreement that allowed Spider-Man to show up in other Marvel films – such as The Avengers.
Great news, right? Not exactly. The deal was cancelled last year and this big news for the upcoming Marvel’s Avengers game set to release on PC, Xbox and PlayStation later this year. From the start of 2021, Spider-Man will appear as an exclusive DLC for the PlayStation ONLY.
Your friendly neighborhood #SpiderMan comes to @PlayAvengers exclusively on PlayStation. Crystal Dynamics offers early details on its own, unique take on the post-launch Hero: https://t.co/EF4Xrc8GGm#PS4 #PlayStation #MarvelsAvengers #SpiderManPS4 pic.twitter.com/GEnmOTaik2
— Marvel's Spider-Man (@Spider_ManPS) August 3, 2020
In what would otherwise be an endearing PlayStation blog post, the details about Crystal Dynamic’s Spider-Man for the upcoming Avenger’s game sounds great. However, tucked away at the bottom is the news that the character will appear as exclusive DLC on Sony’s console.
This might sound great if you’re a PlayStation user – and the character will even appear as a FREE DLC at no extra cost to the player – but it’s pretty terrible news if you were excited for the game on either PC or Xbox.
Sony has been known to use its power to secure exclusives in games, last year it was Modern Warfare receiving an exclusive Spec Ops mode, and presumably, this won’t be the last time content is made exclusive to the PS4 or upcoming PS5.
Though this is quite different from an extra add-on game mode. It’s not even an exclusive set of skins, cosmetics or missions. This is one of Marvel’s most iconic and most-loved characters, and you won’t be able to play as Spider-Man unless you own a PlayStation.
In addition, the game will cost the same $60 whether you buy it on PC, Xbox or PlayStation. You will not receive the extra content unless you buy Sony’s console. This is a pretty unlikable market tactic.
Fans are also worried that Spider-Man, due to the exclusivity deal, will not be able to be a part of the core gameplay. If there is to be a serious singleplayer campaign, how can one console include one of Marvel’s most iconic characters and another platform can’t?
This is a worrying turn of events, but honestly, nothing new. Sony cancelled the sharing of Spider-Man with Disney back in August of last year, and Spider-Man actor Tom Holland had to fight for his place in the MCU.
This was likely because of the sudden success of the character – such as the Spider-Man games on PS4, and the critical acclaim of Into The Spiderverse. What impact the exclusivity deal has on the success of Marvel’s Avengers is yet to be seen, but it’s these sorts of things that do have an impact on the fanbase.