‘Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon': Dan Abnett talks game

July 17, 2014 | 6:00 a.m.
guardiansgame1 Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon: Dan Abnett talks game

Groot, left, Gamora, Star-Lord, Rocket and Drax are ready for trouble in the mobile game "Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon." (Disney Interactive)

guardiansgame2 Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon: Dan Abnett talks game

Rocket as he appears in "Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon." (Disney Interactive)

guardiansgame6 Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon: Dan Abnett talks game

"Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon" features an original comic story with input from Dan Abnett. Here, Star-Lord talks to Cosmo, a telepathic Russian dog who featured in the Abnett co-written 2008-2010 "Guardians" Marvel comic series. (Disney Interactive)

guardiansgame3 Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon: Dan Abnett talks game

A look at the action in "Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon." (Disney Interactive)

guardiansgame4 Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon: Dan Abnett talks game

A look at the action in "Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon." (Disney Interactive)

guardiansgame5 Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon: Dan Abnett talks game

Defeated villains can then be recruited to the player's side in Arena Mode in "Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon." (Disney Interactive)

When Disney Interactive wanted to make sure Star-Lord and the gang seemed like themselves in “Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon,” it got Dan Abnett.

Few, if any, know more about the truly out there outer-space superteam: The prolific Englishman co-wrote the 2008-2010 comic book series that inspired the lineup found in the mobile game, out Thursday, and the upcoming Marvel cosmic adventure film, out Aug. 1 — as well as this spring’s “Guardians of the Galaxy Prelude” comics that tie in to the movie, and penned, on his own, the just-released novel “Rocket Raccoon and Groot: Steal the Universe.”

Abnett worked with art director Yehudi Mercado on the game’s story line, advising on characters’ behavior and distinct voices.

So how consistent are the roguish Star-Lord, assassin Gamora, rampaging Drax, well-armed critter Rocket and tree-like tough guy Groot across comics, film and game? They’re universal, Abnett says.

“I don’t think there’s any case where you go, ‘Really? That’s what he looks like in this? I don’t get that,’” he continues in a Skype conversation with Hero Complex. “It’s just a few sort of minor sort of things that might show up in a Marvel handbook … but no substantive character changes.”

“The Universal Weapon’s” story, told through an in-game comic, involves a search for five pieces to the titular device — and involves 25 characters across six worlds and 60 levels.

Players start as Peter Quill / Star-Lord and assemble what that 2008 series’ debut issue called not a “peacekeeping force,” but an “ass-kicking force,” — Rocket, Groot, Gamora and Drax. They find and train still more heroes as new parts of the story are unlocked for combat that is gesture-based and venture to locations Abnett says Marvel cosmic fans will know, battling the likes of Korath, Nebula and Ronan the Accuser, leading up to a mystery villain.

“It’s a multipoint quest to acquire things before other guys get their hands on them and the fate of the universe collapses, and hilarity ensues in the weird things that tend to happen in Guardians stories,” Abnett says of the game, adding that the team is more “black ops” than a “respected, Avengers-style organization of heroes that everybody admires. They have got to go under the wire. They are rascals. They have got to cut corners. They’re essentially doing galactic dirty work for no praise or reward, but the stakes are incredibly high. They know how important it is.”

As for whether non-film faces familiar to readers of the “Guardians” comics Abnett scripted with Andy Lanning — Adam Warlock? Mantis? — the writer wouldn’t say, not wanting to spoil fans’ fun in unlocking characters. (Though Cosmo the telepathic Russian space dog is mentioned in the gallery above.)

The game, which is $4.99 on the Apple App, Google Play and Windows Phone stores ($7.99 on the Windows Store) and coming to the Amazon App Store soon, does not require an Internet connection to play. In addition to the story, it includes an Arena Mode for staging fights.

“Guardians of the Galaxy: The Universal Weapon” isn’t the first game for Abnett, who will be writing a different galactic Marvel lineup beginning with October’s  “Guardians 3000” No. 1 and has penned many other comics and more than 20 novels including “Warhammer 40,000″ titles. He started a few years ago with “background chatter” for a Tom Clancy game, and has written the story for the upcoming “Alien: Isolation” and created dozens of orcs for “Shadow of Mordor.”

“What I’ve found I’ve really enjoyed with games is working with teams of people, teams of creatives,” he says. “It actually makes a huge change from my usual day job of sitting here hammering at the keyboard on my own in my lonely writer’s garret, with only the cat for company.”

Blake Hennon | Google+ | @LATHeroComplex

RECENT AND RELATED:

"Big Hero 6" represents Disney Animation's first Marvel movie. (Disney)‘Big Hero 6′ trailer features robot action, humor

‘Big Hero 6′ voice cast set

‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ trailer: See more of Ronan the Accuser

Original Guardians of the Galaxy return in Dan Abnett’s ‘Guardians 3000′

‘Guardians of the Galaxy’: Nathan Fillion will appear in ‘fun’ cameo

‘Guardians of the Galxy posters: The oddball crew shoots, struts

 

Comments


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title="" rel=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <pre> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Close
E-mail It
Powered by ShareThis