Marvel Explains New Direction in Video Games

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This past weekend at the D23 Expo, Polygon talked with executive creative director for Marvel Games, Bill Roseman. Roseman was asked about the recent new direction Marvel Games has been taking. With such games as Telltale’s Guardians of the Galaxy, the upcoming Spider-Man PS4 by Insomniac and The Avengers Project being developed by Crystal Dynamics and Eidos Montréal, it looks like Marvel Games is leaving behind the ideology of movie adaptation games and letting game developers have more creative control in shaping their own canons. When asked about this ideology switch, Roseman responded, “I’m glad that is the impression.”

When asked why Marvel has decided to go down this new path, Roseman explained, “We all assembled and took a step back and said, ‘What’s our philosophy on games?’ And the decision was, ‘Hey, making adaptations of either TV shows or movies in a video game is really hard to do.’ You’re trying to hit a window, you’re trying to make something that’s being made at the same time — if you’re trying to do an adaptation of a film and the rough [draft is] still being created, you’re never going to be able to capture that experience.”

Roseman used the example of Spider-Man, a franchise that released a movie this year and is also having a game developed. Rather than trying to copy the story in Spider-Man: Homecoming, which would involve trying to stay true to the story in the two-hour movie while also taking enough creative liberties to extend it into a ten-plus-hour video game, Marvel Games decided it would be better to create a video game with its own original story that can stand on its own. It won’t be a game trying to ride the coattails of the movie; it’ll be its own thing with its own legs to stand on. Roseman states, “With Spider-Man, you look at it and you’re like, ‘That’s Spider-Man from the Spider-Man game, that’s Spider-Man made by Insomniac.'”

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Dylan Siegler
Dylan Siegler has a BA in Creative Writing from the University of Redlands. He has copy edited novels and short stories and is the editor of nearly all marketing materials for RoKo Marketing. In addition to his professional work, Dylan is also working on several of his own projects. Some of these projects include a novel that satirizes the very nature of novel writing as an art and a short film that parodies buddy cop movies. His short story “Day 3658,” a look into a future ten years into a zombie apocalypse, is being published in September of 2017 in Microcosm Publishing’s compilation Bikes in Space IV: Biketopia. His political satire "The Devil's Advocates" is currently available for free (the link to this story can be found on his Facebook page).