ZAP! BAM! Microsoft Signs with Comics Maker
Microsoft has signed an exclusive deal with Marvel Enterprises, creator of such well-known comic book characters as Spider-Man, the Incredible Hulk, and the X-Men. Under terms of the agreement, Microsoft will develop for the Xbox 360 video game system a series of massively multiplayer online (MMO) games that will take place in the Marvel universe and feature Marvel characters. The first game is expected in 2008.
"Online gaming is reaching a point of acceptance," said Microsoft Corporate Vice President Peter Moore. "We will use as many of the Marvel characters as we can [in the games]. Marvel fans will finally have the ability to create choices with their favorite Super Heroes, villains, and creatures in unbelievable detail--all with the power of Marvel's incredible vision and the Xbox platform."
The deal represents the first known attempt at an MMO game on a video game console, although such games are fairly common on PCs; more than 2 million gamers participate in such games worldwide. Microsoft says that the Xbox 360's incredible processor power and connectivity features make this sort of game possible on a console for the first time.