Despite the media blitz and various tie-ins for Marvel's "Avengers: Age of Ultron," one thing fans won't be seeing is a major video game console release. Of course, gamers looking for their "Ultron" fix won't have to look much further than their pockets, as Kabam's "Marvel Contest of Champions" game is bringing the cinematic world and characters to their iOS and Android fighting title, which brings in RPG and strategy elements to beef up the mobile gameplay.
While the action might be limited to phones and tablets, who doesn't want to pit Marvel Studios heroes and villains against one another in a movie inspired arena -- and then enjoy an exclusive clip from the Joss Whedon-directed sequel to "The Avengers."
CBR News spoke to Kabam's Cuz Parry, the game's creative director, about these new additions, and what they mean for fight fans, as well as what the new characters introduced in the upcoming film meant in terms of challenges for the studio.
CBR News: "Contest of Champions is a fighting game, with a story helmed by comic writer Sam Humphries, and it's designed to allow new characters to join in the battle as the story and game progress. Now, it's time for the "Avengers: Age of Ultron" add-on. Who's joining the action?
Cuz Parry: We're adding Hulkbuster, Black Widow, Vision, and of course, Ultron Prime. Their classes are Tech, Skill, Tech and Tech, respectively. I know that sounds a bit Tech heavy, but it's kind of hard denying that a robot, a Stark Industry armor suit, and a synthezoid aren't tech. Plus, we were a little light on Tech Champions, so these guys bring some class balance to the game.
Since Vision was already in the game, how does the "Avengers: Age of Ultron" version differ from the original?
He'll bring new synergy bonuses and signature abilities to the game. And, he looks super badass like the movie one.
Is there a reason you're not also adding "Avengers: Age of Ultron" versions of Iron Man, Captain America, and the rest?
There are so many characters lined up that we want to get to, it makes it hard to choose second versions of characters. Though we're working with Marvel to roll out characters that will resonate with fans of both the cinematic and publishing "universes," while listening to the community as to who they'd like to see next.
Are there any characters in the movie that you don't think would work in the game? I could see how Quicksilver's speed might make him difficult to put into this kind of fighter.
You got it, it might be hard to do Quicksilver justice. I'm sure we could figure something out, but with the wealth of Marvel characters, Pietro will have to be put on the back burner.
Are there other characters you're adding but can't tell us about because they'd spoil something in the movie, and if you did that, director Joss Whedon would smack you?
Did anyone suggest adding Joss Whedon as a playable character?
Stan Lee probably did. Oh, wait, that's his gig. Never mind.
Besides new characters, you're also adding a new arena.
Yes. We're adding a new arena inspired by the movie, but with a "Contest" spin on it. We're thinking it's the ultimate Ultron factory where he cranks out his drones, and probably does version upgrades on himself. Ultron also brings his own quest map to the game; instead of the game's regular Battlerealm, you'll see a map with a huge swath of typical Ultron destruction.
The "Avengers: Age Of Ultron" update for "Marvel Contest of Champions" will also include an exclusive clip from the movie. Does the clip have any bearing on what happens in the game? Does it set up a fight between two of the new characters?
Nope, it doesn't set up anything in the game, but that's a pretty good idea. Hmmmm...
Finally, with the "Ant-Man" movie coming out July 17, and Ant-Man not a playable character in "Marvel Contest of Champions," is it safe to assume he may be at some point this summer? Or is this something you can't talk about without being smacked by Paul Rudd?
Well, I can't really talk much about the whole Ant-Man thing -- Paul Rudd does indeed pose an intimidating presence -- but I'd bet it's safe to say that something involving Pym particles is in the game's future.
"Marvel Contest of Champions" and the "Avengers: Age of Ultron" add-ons are available now for iOS and Android.