True Believers! The day has come and we’re here to deliver incredible Marvel Games news from D23 Expo! We just announced “MARVEL Powers United VR,” an action-packed, multiplayer co-op title from Marvel, Sanzaru, and Oculus Studios, and you can get your hands on this game in 2018!
Our very own Christine Dinh has the exclusive first interview with Steve Arnold, Head of Oculus Studios. Before you dive into the interview, check out the announce trailer above!
Marvel.com: When did you guys start working on “MARVEL Powers United VR” for Rift?
Steve Arnold: We’ve been working on “MARVEL Powers United VR” for awhile! When the opportunity came about for Oculus and Marvel to work together on realizing a Super Hero VR experience, Oculus approached Sanzaru to create a prototype presentation—Sanzaru and Oculus have worked closely together on past VR projects, and there are some big Marvel fans at both companies. Marvel has very high standards, of course, and Sanzaru more than rose to the occasion. So here we are—Oculus, Sanzaru, and Marvel in an alliance behind “MARVEL Powers United VR.”
Marvel.com: Can you tell us about the story of “MARVEL Powers United VR”? What can you tell us about the big bad, Ronan? Where is the story set?
Steve Arnold: “Marvel Powers United VR” tells the story of The Masters of Evil—a mysterious, nefarious alliance of powerful Super Villains from across the Marvel Universe—who have managed to steal the Cosmic Cube and use it to tear apart the universe, forging new realities subservient to their rule. Suddenly, heroes from across the Marvel Universe are hurled together in a chaotic, interdimensional conflict spanning past, present, and alternate futures to fight to reclaim the Cosmic Cube and restore order to the universe.
Each time you play, you won’t know which faction or boss you’ll encounter—every experience will play a little differently. One time you may get the Kree and Ronan The Accuser as a boss; another time you’ll get something totally different.
Marvel.com: This is obviously a new adventure for Marvel games. What new and different experiences does “MARVEL Powers United VR” offer Marvel fans?
Steve Arnold: VR is the perfect medium for a Super Hero game, and there are a couple things that make “MARVEL Powers United VR“ especially exciting. We’re starting with just a few characters right now, but by launch there will be over a dozen playable Marvel characters and even more team combinations.
Marvel.com: What has the collaboration with Marvel, Sanzaru, and Oculus Studios been like?
Steve Arnold: The collaboration between Marvel, Oculus and Sanzaru—some of the most experienced subject matter experts in the world when it comes to Super Heroes, VR, and gaming—has been a dream come true. There’s a lot of fan service and love jam-packed into this game, and great ideas came from all sides. We love the partnership and can’t wait to show the world all of the cool stuff that we’re putting into the game!
Marvel.com: You’ve just announced the first three characters: Hulk, Rocket Raccoon, and Captain Marvel. How did those three get chosen to suit up for battle? Can you tell us more about their abilities within the game? What are they capable of?
Steve Arnold: Hulk, Rocket, and Captain Marvel are very popular, so it made sense to start off with a few characters fans would really love experiencing. These characters also represent the spectrum of Super Heroes we plan to launch for “MARVEL Powers United VR” in 2018, in terms of both abilities and physical scale. On one end of the spectrum, there’s Rocket Raccoon: He’s much shorter than most characters and uses futuristic weaponry. On the other end, there’s the Hulk. He’s huge, of course, and primarily a melee fighter. Captain Marvel is in the middle: She’s physically closer to normal human stature, but her power-set includes ranged attacks with her photon beams, like Rocket, and she’s also super strong like the Hulk and able to engage in melee combat. Building out this variety of characters early on gave us some best practices that we’re applying to optimize all future characters, and VR lets you appreciate—and experience—the sheer difference in scale between characters like Hulk and Rocket like no other medium can.
Marvel.com: Clearly with the upcoming “Marvel’s Inhumans” television series slated to come out this fall, the love for Lockjaw is real! How central is Lockjaw to the story?
Steve Arnold: Lockjaw is crucial. He ensures our Super Heroes are teleported to and from their missions. But stay tuned—we’re still in development, and there are some fun things we’d love to do with Lockjaw throughout the game and missions.
Marvel.com: We’ve heard fans can get hands-on with “MARVEL Powers United VR” at the Marvel booth at SDCC. Any plans for future demos?
Steve Arnold: That’s right, the first public demos of “MARVEL Powers United VR” will be at the Marvel booth at Comic-Con. There are no set dates (yet!) for additional public demos before launch, so try out MARVEL Powers United VR now if you can!
Marvel.com: How long do we have to wait until we get “MARVEL Powers United VR” in our hands?
Steve Arnold: The game is slated for a 2018 launch, but you’ll have to sit tight—there are no details about a specific date right now. Keep your eyes on Oculus and Marvel social channels, though, because we’ll be revealing a ton of new information right up until launch.
Stay tuned to Marvel.com and powersunitedvr.com for more exciting updates about “Marvel Powers United VR” coming soon!