Video game developers are unhappy with James Gunn’s plans for an interconnected DC Universe. With DC Universe games now forced to be integral parts of the ongoing cinematic universe, many are upset with the restrictions this places on game developers.
In a post on Twitter, lead designer of Firaxis’ brilliant Marvel’s Midnight Suns Jake Solomon explained that Gunn’s lofty plans are bad for game development. Due to Gunn’s wishes to keep everything connected, devs will have to work with far tighter moderation than ever before.
Gunn’s plans will see every DCU video game be integral to the franchise’s overall story. Furthermore, any character that turns up will have to be voiced by the same actor across every medium. If Superman turns up in a game, movie or cartoon, he’ll have to be the same actor.
Solomon revealed that this level of mandatory control would’ve killed games like Midnight Suns in the past. Marvel’s Midnight Suns has a massive cast of superhero characters. While some, like Spider-Man and Wolverine, have iconic voice actors reprising their beloved roles, many characters have all-new voices.
“This would have been a nightmare for us on Midnight Suns,” Solomon tweeted. “I understand the desire (I think) but movies and games are so, so different. And the pressure this puts on the amazing voice actors in the games space? Different universes. And that’s how they should/will stay.”
Solomon’s take isn’t new. In fact, it’s been mostly accepted that video games should be distance from the continuity of ongoing movie releases. While movie tie-in games used to be a dime-a-dozen, they’re almost nonexistent nowadays.
Games such as Batman: Arkham Asylum led to a massive explosion in standalone comic book games that have proven better and more popular than tie-in games ever were. Could we have the brilliance of Insomniac’s Spider-Man if it was tied to the Marvel Cinematic Universe?
Marvel’s video game plans are as different from DC as they come. While Insomniac has its own universe with Spider-Man and Wolverine, that hasn’t stopped Marvel from giving EA the opportunity to create a Captain America and Black Panther game in a completely different continuity. After all, if we want a connected universe, we have the MCU.
James Gunn has explained that DC Universe games will be their own stories, not being forced to tie-in with blockbuster releases.
“It’s not like we’re going to have the Superman movie come out and have this Superman game come out. It’s more like we’ll have the Superman film come out, then maybe two years later, we have the Supergirl movie coming out. So, what’s the story in between there? Is there a Krypto game that we can play that comes in between them?“ he explained.
However, with game development often taking far longer than film development, are Gunn’s plans too ambitious for his own good?