As soon as we finished Insomniac's Spider-Man we missed being able to swing around New York, so the arrival of this first expansion - The Heist - was the perfect excuse to get back to it. This is the first of three content drops, but from what we've seen here, they'll form a single story. In other words, don't just buy The Heist on its own as it's not a complete product. If you're truly interested in playing more Spider-Man, and you want the full story, you'll need to buy the full season pass, which seems a fair price from what we've seen so far.
Having left a few crumbs for the player to follow in the main storyline, Black Cat (Felicia Hardy) finally appears in the spotlight, serving as the focus of this expansion. The player will uncover a plot involving the anti-hero, the mobster Hammerhead, and other mob families. Mary Jane is also an important part of this story (and she's once again playable in a mission), and even Miles Morales hasn't been forgotten, although he has been sidelined into a very minor role. Note that The Heist takes place after the final events of the base game too, which means you'll need to finish the main story to gain access to the expansion.
The plot itself is rather short, and shouldn't take you more than two hours to finish. We won't go into much detail about what happens, but we can say that it ends abruptly, with a frustrating 'To Be Continued' in the final sequence. The story itself doesn't offer anything drastically different from what we've already seen in the base game either, and to some extent, it's more of the same, although this is not necessarily negative when the "same" is so good. That said, there is a chase sequence that's particularly impressive, but let's not go into details.
In addition to the main story, there are new crimes, challenges, and collectibles to get stuck into. The crimes this time are carried out by mafia gangs but are basically identical to what was already in the base game. The exception is a new type of instance that forces you to search for bombs using the Spider-Bot. It's fun, but nothing memorable.
As for the collectibles, you will now have the task of finding paintings that the original Black Cat hid all over the city. Each piece you find will offer some extra context about Felicia Hardy's father, but as with the base story, it leaves some unresolved issues for the upcoming expansions.
Finally, you can also take on some new challenges, similar to those of Taskmaster in the base game. This time it's Screwball who wants to test our hero's skills, all in the name of more views and clicks on her social networks. In practice you follow the same format as other challenges you've already done, but with the introduction of a new mechanic. At certain points of the challenge, you must eliminate enemies within specific areas, or perform a spectacular move, so that the viewer numbers go up. Like the Taskmaster challenges, these also include three medals that you can try to win, depending on your score.
Otherwise, you will also be getting three new suits (none of them come with unique powers), some new J. Jonah Jameson broadcasts, and a new enemy type, equipped with a giant machine gun. The Heist is not a particularly impressive or memorable expansion - since it's more of the same for the most part - but it's fun and it comes with some interesting moments. The fact that it ended so abruptly was a disappointment, but if the other expansions maintain the same quality, or even raise it, it seems to us that the price is justified. The second expansion, Turf Wars, arrives in November, while the latter, Silver Lining, will be released in December. We'll circle back once the story concludes and let you know what we think of the whole thing. Until then...