Electronic Arts Inc. has signed a deal with IDW Publishing to expand two of its intellectual properties, Army of Two™ and Dragon Age™, into comics under a new EA™ Comics imprint with IDW beginning in January. EA and IDW will launch monthly, ongoing series for both Army of Two and Dragon Age. Each issue will be published in print and distributed nationally at comic book outlets, with digital versions released for iPhone™ and iPod® Touch and other emerging digital platforms.
“We’ve seen an increasing number of video game tie-ins with comics over the last few years. This marks another step in our strategy for extending EA’s wholly-owned game properties to new media. It is exhilarating to be working with the comic book creators directly,” said Mike Quigley, Group Vice President, Global Marketing, EA Games Label.
Under terms of the agreement, EA will fund and manage the creative aspect of the comic book series, while IDW will be responsible for printing and distribution. IDW is the leader in digital comic book distribution and the nation’s third largest comic book publisher overall.
“This is a great opportunity for IDW to work with a worldwide leader in video games,” said Greg Goldstein, chief operating officer for IDW. “We look forward to bringing a tremendous amount of great content into the comics market.”
Written by veteran comic book writer Peter Milligan (X-Men, Batman, Hellblazer), Army of Two is being published as a comic starting in January 2010. Rising star Chester Ocampo is the cover artist while the interior artist/penciler, Dexter Soy, is a ‘hot newcomer’ on the comic scene. Soy’s work suggests influences from well-known comic artists such as Whilce Portacio and Leinil Francis Yu. The first story arc, “Across the Border,” follows ex-Army Rangers Salem and Rios as they form their own Private Military Corporation: Trans World Operations. The story of the comic follow the events of the first Army of Two game but takes place before the deadly invasion of Shanghai by The 40th Day initiative in the videogame sequel. In the comic, Salem and Rios get more than they bargained for as they are unexpectedly caught in a brewing war between the Mexican Army, drug cartels, and The Maras – one of the most powerful street gangs in Mexico.
Inspired by the highly-anticipated BioWare™ RPG, Dragon Age: Origins, the Dragon Age comic book series will be written by award-winning fiction writer Orson Scott Card (Ender’s Game, Ultimate Iron Man). The cover artist is the critically acclaimed Humberto Ramos. Story details and the interior artist are expected to be announced shortly.
To sign up for the EA Comics mailing list, register on the new EA Comics web site. The site will have complete information on all the EA comic book series, as well as unique “behind the scenes” content, news, blogs and artwork. The site will feature weekly content updates to keep audiences apprised of the latest developments on current and upcoming projects.
Also new on the Army of Two site is Part 1 of Nathaniel Brierley’s Dev Diary about the Artificial Intelligence in AoT: 40th Day. Here’s a clip:
“Artificial Intelligence may not be as exciting as explosions and awesome graphics, but nevertheless it’s hugely important in Army of Two: The 40th Day. We put an immense amount of effort into creating interesting, completely dynamic, behaviors for enemies and partner AI so that players get the reward of experiencing unique interactions with enemies as they demonstrate a wide range of behaviors that simply aren’t seen in other games. Army of Two: The 40th Day has iterated and improved on the AI in the original Army of Two, but we also implemented an array of completely new behaviors that we know everyone is going to have a blast experiencing.” … please click the link above to continue reading Nathaniel’s article.