Ever want to see the Incredible Hulk square off with The Thing (not that thing, perv)? Microsoft just inked a deal with Marvel to make that fight and a bunch of others a virtual reality for the upcoming Xbox 360.
Hold your horses, Sparky. You’ll have to wait until 2008.
Microsoft announced Thursday that it obtained the exclusive rights to put the entire collection of Marvel characters at gamers disposal in massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPG). The X-mas box 360 is expected to launch in time for the Christmas season, but the Marvel MMORPGs won’t be ready until some time in 2008.
The cast of characters includes X-men, Fantastic 4, and Spider Man. Microsoft, no doubt noticing last month’s dealt between Sony and DC Comics to produce games like Matrix Online, hopes to appeal the growing crowd of MMORP gamers.
These games, which allow hundreds or thousands of players to link up to a central location to compete against one another, are especially popular in Asia (where a crowds are rather normal).
Sony, Microsoft’s chief rival in the gaming and console business, currently rules this particular market with Everquest games providing the bulk of material for the estimated 2 million gamers involved.
Marvel Entertainment and Microsoft seem to be gushing over the deal.
"Marvel has created some of the most iconic and exciting characters and stories in the past century. We're thrilled to bring this universe to interactive entertainment," said Peter Moore, corporate vice president of Worldwide Marketing and Publishing for Xbox at Microsoft.
Marvel was equally as thrilled about the deal as demonstrated in Pressrelease-ese here.
"We are very excited to be working with Microsoft to bring our fans what we expect will be a world-class online gaming experience," Tim Rothwell, vice president at Marvel Enterprises said. "We also believe online gaming will provide valuable, global exposure to our character brands."