Spider-Man 2 trailer from Thursday's PlayStation Showcase is very popular. It has already been viewed over 8.5 million times on the official PlayStation youtube channel alone. The game's devs at Insomniac Games announced on Twitter that the trailer was not pre-rendered. What we've seen in the trailer was captured entirely using real-time gameplay on PS5.
"The team did a killer job. Real time VFX are difficult but I'm so proud of our whole team for pushing our quality bar," said Bryanna Lindsey, lead VFX artist at Insomniac Games .
What's particularly striking is the natural lighting, soft shadows and detailed reflections in puddles achieved through the implementation of hardware ray-tracing. Although at this point in time ray-tracing on consoles is at best equivalent to a "medium setting" on PC, by the time Spider-Man 2 is released, the implementation is sure to improve significantly.
The background is blured by a high-quality depth-of-field effect. Realistic simulated volumetric smoke rises from the manholes, moved by external forces - a rather resource-intensive visual effect, and therefore rarely implemented in games of the passing generation (it could be experienced in the PC version of Batman: Arkham Knight). The whole thing is spiced up with thousands of particle effects, which Sony mastered to perfection in Ghost of Tsushima.
Spider-Man 2 is not the only upcoming title showing the power of next-gen consoles. Hellblade II: Senua's Saga trailer was also captured in real time, which was confirmed by Epic Games.
These days, visuals in video games are looking more and more like photorealistic cinematic CGI. Let's just hope that developers will use the power of new consoles not only to increase resolution but also to design more natural animations or better destruction systems. So, will Spider-Man 2 take graphics to new heights? We'll find out in 2023 - exclusively on PS5.