First things first: as the Editor of MTV's comics and movie blog, Splash Page, I'm a comics guy first, gamer second -- but it's a close second. So it was with no small amount of joy that I received these peeks at Deadpool and Juggernaut in "Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2: Fusion."
We've been covering the heck out of Marvel's "Merc With the Mouth" on Splash Page due to his role in "X-Men Origins: Wolverine" and newly announced solo film, and X-Men foe/friend Juggernaut is a favorite of mine from way back. From the looks of the recently released Deadpool promo video and Deadpool/Juggernaut screenshots, it looks like the pair have carved out a nice niche for themselves in the hearts of "Fusion" developers Vicarious Visions, too.
Over at the official website for "Ultimate Alliance 2," there are also a pair of extended dev diaries on Deadpool and Juggernaut, with a host of animators, designers, testers and artists chiming in on the the various elements of the Marvel merc, and art director Bryan Shutt offering some thoughts on Juggernaut.
Oh, and did I mention the screenshots?
From Steve Vanseth, Fusion Designer: "Also, knowing that he has a twisted sense of humor, I’d try to incorporate that into his animations, as best I could. I think the collect-and-blast fusion is a great example of that: he’s not satisfied with just hitting enemies with his grenades; he has to continue to shoot them out of the air as the grenades are exploding. I think that’s a good example of his twisted humor."
And from David Phillips, Concept Artist: "For the costume, our main source of inspiration was the Cable & Deadpool: Civil War arc. We also looked at his costume over the years to examine the overall themes to his look. Like Spider-Man, Deadpool has an extremely iconic appearance that carries over all his costumes over the years. So, it was important for us to maintain that while assimilating him into the 'real world' look of our game."
As for Juggernaut, which the latest issue of Game Informer claims will be "an exclusive pre-order promotion," Shutt described the character's design as "a mobile wrecking ball," and added that "everything about him needed to feel solid and heavy."
Did he achieve that look for the character? You be the judge:
Shutt described the design of the character at length -- and in exhaustive, but fascinating, detail -- including this bit about his helmet: "One thing I wanted to do was give him the ability to turn his head (poor guy probably falls for that sneaky tap-on-the-shoulder trick every time). So we broke up his massive dome into a ball-and-socket design that allows the inner helmet to swivel inside a larger collar. I then wanted to secure the whole contraption to his suit in a way that felt believable, so we bolted it to heavy duty cross straps on his chest and back. In the comics the helmet tends to look mysteriously fused into his costume, or in some cases, like it’s just resting on his shoulders. In our version the helmet’s anchor straps fit snuggly around Juggernaut’s pecs and shoulder blades. I think it adds a nice touch visually, while still staying true to the existing design."
Of course, while Deadpool and Juggernaut's "Ultimate Alliance 2" presence is certainly impressive, I'm still waiting for Darkhawk and Rom: Spaceknight to make their debuts in Marvel's gaming scene. Maybe in "Ultimate Alliance 3," perhaps?
Yeah, I didn't think so, either.