Insomniac Games changed a puddle in Marvel’s Spider-Man and it’s one of the biggest talking points on sites like Reddit right now. A screenshot “comparison” – which has been circulating for some time but has blown up this week – shows a scene from the title’s E3 2017 demo compared to a more recent build, and it’s different so naturally it’s been “downgraded”.
Except it hasn’t: the developer says that it’s “just a change in puddle size”, which is pretty obvious for anyone with eyes to observe. Fans then started digging into other details, claiming that the fidelity of the environment and main character has also been reduced, forcing community director James Stevenson to chime in: “I am telling you I talked to the technical and engineering and art staff […] there was no downgrade.”
According to Stevenson, the lighting in the screenshot is different because the developer altered the time of day – a tweak you may expect when a game is still in active production. “Downgrade implies we showed something not possible as a trick or reduced capabilities,” he continued. “Neither of those [are] true.”
On the subject of the puddle, the embattled community director added that it was most likely moved for design, usability, or art reasons – not performance. And he concluded that backlashes like this are the reason why developers are so reluctant to reveal works in progress. Our take on this whole thing: it’s embarrassing, and everyone who’s been shouting at Insomniac Games should be ashamed.