How Dark Horse is Helping Expand the Video Game & Comic Universe


Dark Horse Comics has a lot of new and exciting news for gamers this year. Fans of Mass Effect, Dragon Age II and III, and Legend of Zelda have a lot to look forward to! At their Panel at New York City 2012 Comic Con, fans were able to ask questions about everything from differences between the storylines from the games to the comics of their favorite characters to the new collections being released soon.

Here is just a little bit of what Dark Horse Comics has been up to this year. A new novel, hardcover edition of Mass Effect released earlier in February this year that contains notes from many different writers about the game. They include the processes by which they came up with the characters and their story lines, as in a making of Mass Effect. Also, there is a sourcebook for Dragon Age II and Dragon Age III coming early next year in April, that contains a combination of new Lore, the politics and religion of the game that fans and gamers rarely get to see, as well as concept art from all three Dragon Age games, and a definitive work of what goes on behind the scenes. For Legend of Zelda fans (and who isn’t one,) an American edition of Hyrule Historia was released in January, and quickly topped the ranks as the #1 book sold on Amazon.com. This book contains everything any Zelda fan could want , and has been completely translated from the original version in Japanese, including handwritten notes and the concept designs. What’s really exciting is that this is Dark Horse’s first project with Nintendo, could we be seeing the start of a beautiful relationship?

Fans also got a sneak peak of The Last of Us from Naughty Dog. Neil Druckman creative director, and Faith Hicks (Zombies Calling, Friends with Boys, The Adventures of Superhero Girl), gave us a little insight into the universe they created for the comic as well as the game. The Last of Us is about a boy named Joel, played by Troy Baker and a young girl named Ellie, voiced by Ashley Johnson, growing up in a post pandemic America in a hellish and soldier-controlled world. There, the only choices to live your life is to become a Soldier and live comfortably, or live off of food stamps and rations with the others. Unlike Joel, Ellie has no prior recollection of what life was like before the fungal plague, and Ellie chooses her own path and along with her friend Riley, venture out in hopes of something else. In the comic you get to experience Ellie and her every day life, from her orphange-type-school to her struggle to find out what used to be. The Last of Us is both single and multiplayer and will be available for PS3 early next year.

Fans had a lot of Questions for the Dark Horse panel, which mostly revolved around the Mass Effect trilogy, but also included the spin offs. Fans were curious to see if there would be any more expansion on Mass Effect: Homeworlds. Mac Walters, writer for Dark Horse Comics responded that if any of the stories become popular and successful they are always looking to expand on characters stories without interfering with the other story lines. Possible characters they are willing to look into include any of the Henchmen (Rex, Ash or Katie). Especially in Mass Effect 2, there are so many character story lines that could be expanded, and fans are curious to know if they are dead or alive, or if possibly any of them are coming back? The panel agrees the characters of Mass Effect are what make the game so compelling, and they would love to expand on some of their stories.

We got a chance to see that happened with the new Mass Effect Movie: Paragon Lost that follows the character James Vega from Mass Effect 2 after Shepard is pronounced dead. The movie takes place between the second and third game following Vega as he deals with the lost of Shepard and the confrontation of the Reapers. The movie is a must see for Mass Effect fans as it’s full of suspense, action, gore, while focusing on the character James Vega. It is story lines like these that fans are eager to see. After watching this movie, I have a new found respect for Vega and will begin to think twice before I refuse to bring him on a mission again. Be sure to grab Mass Effect Paragon Lost releasing on Blue Ray and DVD December 2012.

Stephanie Wiliiamson is a freelance writer for Girl gamer Vogue.

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