I just got around to playing and finishing Spiderman. I never bothered when it came out. I was busy with my switch and figured I'd grab it on a sale... So here we are, post game credits rolling and I have to say in terms of open world action games and based on the standard of AAA games, story, presentation, moment to moment gameplay, Spiderman ps4 is undeniably a 10.
A 10 does not mean perfect to me, and Spiderman is not perfect. It struggles in some spots to differentiate itself from some common open world tropes, and it doesn't reinvent the wheel with its approach to mission design or side activities, but it summarizes to me the potential of how an open world game with focus on gameplay, story, pacing and presentation can come together in remarkable ways.
I never fast traveled once... That's never happened for me before in an open world game. Why? Because insomniac built a wonderful system to traverse the world that became more thrilling the longer I played it. They also avoided the great scourge on open world games... Too big a world.
I can't answer for you but Im done walking/horsing my way across three states to arrive at a side mission. That's not good gaming to me. Despite the aforementioned imperfection of the Spiderman side missions, they were accessible and didn't waste my time getting there or completing them. They also fed directly into my choice to upgrade powers and suits, so I found them compelling as they opened up progressively across the city.
The story was wonderful! Im in a stingy spot in life where video game stories are eye rolling at best, but in a game where I'm expecting "marvel movie" level story, this was pretty fantastic. Characters where great and the story had weight. Especially in the end game.
I know spiderman was discussed ad nauseum a couple years ago when it released, and most folks are on to so many other gaming experiences, but Spiderman was a 10/10 when weighed against its contemporaries in its genre and gaming in general.
Would I have wanted some tougher boss fights, sure.. Or just some ways to use that awesome combat system in ways that upped the challenge, sure but that's what hard mode is for.
In terms of single player experiences, open world games with compelling stories, give me this game over rdr or the Witcher in terms of open world all day.