Yesterday, we brought you an update on the recent deal between Marvel Entertainment and game developer Gazillion that offered up some exclusive details regarding the types of Marvel-based games we can expect from the deal and when we can expect to see them hit shelves. But that wasn't all we learned from my conversation with Simon Phillips, Marvel's president of worldwide consumer products.
While my chat with the Marvel exec offered up a lot of information about the gaming-side particulars of the deal, Phillips also addressed some of the issues likely to be foremost on the minds of Splash Page readers -- namely, the role of Marvel's upcoming movies and stable of comic book writers in the long-awaited "Marvel Universe" multiplayer online game.
"Marvel is all about the synergy between each of the different areas we're involved in -- from the comics to the movies to the animation to the merchandising, all of them work together," Phillips told MTV News. "And the ['Marvel Universe' game] is going to play off all of that."
Though Phillips wouldn't get into specifics about how the films and game could play off one another, he did answer in the affirmative when asked if much-anticipated Marvel movies like "Thor" and "The Avengers" will play a noticeable part in the "Marvel Universe" gaming experience.
"Yes, because each of our upcoming movies and each of our animated shows, each of those just creates the awareness and adds to the whole ['Marvel Universe'] experience," said Phillips.
But what about Marvel's impressive brain trust of writers? We already know that "Invincible Iron Man" writer Matt Fraction was called in to consult on "Iron Man 2" and Marvel's alpha architect, Brian Michael Bendis, was tapped for a "Thor" meeting with director Kenneth Branagh -- but would the same sort of crossover apply to Marvel's gaming projects?
"We're still working all of that process out," said Phillips. "We only just signed the contract. But since this is a [Marvel multiplayer online game], the integrity of the game is of paramount importance to us."
"We would very much be looking at how we can incorporate in this new storytelling the comics writers that we have," said Phillips, "to ensure that we have an [online, multiplayer gaming] experience that lives up to the comic book experience and takes the player to a whole new level."
What do you think about Marvel's plans for their "Marvel Universe" multiplayer online game thus far? How would you like to see the game connect with the movies? And what about Marvel writers -- who would you like to see involved with the game's storyline?