SAN DIEGO--Activision's Comic-Con 2011 panel was more a promotional affair than illuminating discussion, a fact evidenced by the celebrity-studded panel. Perhaps the most enthusiastic of panelists was none other than venerated Marvel man Stan Lee, who was on hand at the beginning of the panel to laud the work of Beenox and Silicon Knights on Spider-Man: Edge of Time and X-Men: Destiny, respectively.
Asked about his impressions of the game, Lee said that it simply feels good to see something like this made. Lee was also quite keen on comic characters' conversion to games, saying that the interactive medium is far more enthralling than even the movies. "Eat your heart out, Batman," Lee exclaimed.
The panel didn't delve too deeply into the games themselves, largely offering high-concept pitches on why gamers should be interested in the new Spider-Man and X-Men titles. Beenox studio head Dee Brown noted that Marvel offered a significant amount of support during the development of Edge of Time's story. Of course, they also had Spider-Man 2099 cocreator Peter David collaborating on the game's story.
Asked about his inspiration for the story, David said that Beenox had largely mapped out the key story points they wanted to hit, and it was his role to fill in the spaces between. Bemused, David said that he and the writing team would frequently consult with Marvel over an idea they thought would certainly be turned down, but the comics company would frequently say, "Yeah, no problem." This includes a joke near the beginning of the game about the disaster-prone Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark Broadway musical.
As for X-Men Destiny, the panel was enthusiastic about the flexibility that introducing all-new characters affords players. According to Silicon Knights' Julian Spillane, the new characters create an interesting new wrinkle in the classic X-Men experience because players aren't confined to, say, Wolverine's story and powers. They can craft the character they want, he said. Scott Porter (Friday Night Lights), who voices the character of Adrian, noted that X-Men: Destiny also features a number of mutants not often seen in games.
Check back with GameSpot later for a video of Activision's Comic-Con 2011 panel, which also featured the likes of Val Kilmer, Katee Sackhoff, Laura Vandervoort, and Jaime Chung.