Who runs the world? Girls, according to Beyoncé … and Marvel. While Marvel’s dedication to bringing female superheroes to the front is not a new initiative, the world is about to see a lot more of their favorite ladies, and not just on the covers of comic books.
Starting Thursday, March 3, Marvel Games will launch its “Women of Power” event, which kicks off with the debut of new characters and content along all mobile, console, handheld, and PC titles. The launch is scheduled to coincide with Marvel Publishing’s “Women of Power” initiative, which will feature 25 new variant covers of some of Marvel’s most iconic characters.
“Across our portfolio, we’re going to launch over a dozen new female characters in all of our different games as well as the in game story events,” Bill Rosemann, Creative Director of Marvel Games, told EW. Those include fan favorites like Moonstone, Captain Marvel and Poundcakes in LEGO Marvel’s Avengers; Kamala Khan, She-Hulk, X-23 in Marvel Contest of Champions, Proxima Midnight in Marvel Future Fight, Silk and other Spider women in Spider-Man Unlimited, Rescue (Pepper Potts) in Marvel Heroes 2016, as well as multiple new female heroes in Marvel’s recently released Avengers Academy. Marvel Puzzle Quest will also release “Women of Power” variant covers, showcasing their top female characters.
“The beauty of Marvel is the width and breadth of our character lineup,” said Rosemann, explaining that “the Women of Power event is a culmination of what’s been going on at Marvel and sort of the organic growth of their Women of Marvel movement from the podcast to different events.” He added that the genesis of the idea came out of a desire to highlight these powerful female superheroes in a way that was more than just comics. For Marvel’s Director of Content and Character Development Sana Amanat, putting the initiative together became a question of how to elevate characters to an audience that might not necessarily be familiar with so many amazing female characters.
“We’re trying to find unique ways to do that in a way that is more about showcasing and celebrating these characters more than anything else,” said Amanat. “For us, we’ve been doing the Women of Marvel of variants for quite some time. So this time we thought we’d put a little spin on it with Women of Power.”
“We view Marvel Games as one of the most important pillars of Marvel storytelling,” said Rosemann. “By that, I mean Marvel fans encounter our heroes through these different pillars, whether it’s through the comic books, TV shows, through our film…and we view Marvel Games standing right there along with them. And one of our key strengths is our ability to tell stories, and we bake that into all of our games.”
While Marvel is always striving to put women in the spotlight, an event like is something that Amanat says is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to making these characters more visible. “There is very much the idea here that a lot of these characters can transcend their current roles,” she said. “For me, I’m kind of looking at the possibilities that exist and I know that it’s just a matter of time before it starts going into our other divisions. But we also want to make sure that we are cultivating a mission for the growth of these characters in a way that’s realistic and authentic, and it’s really more about having the Marvel universe expand and grow, and educating our fans and new audiences about the treasure chest of characters that exist that they might not traditionally know of as we do start expanding them in different areas.”
“The reason we do this is because we live and breathe the Marvel mantra: with great power comes great responsibility,” said Rosemann. “And we view our power in Marvel games as storytelling. Our responsibility is to use that power to embrace and spread Marvel’s historic and ongoing message of diversity and inclusion and inspiration and empowerment.”
“We’re getting to a point where people just want to see really great characters and powerful characters up there, and it doesn’t matter what their gender is,” added Amanat. “We are not going out there and painting our characters with one color, with one style. What makes the Marvel universe so rich is all of these variances and different perspectives, and a lot of that has to do with showcasing different experiences but some of that is just showing distinct character and personalities.”