Hoping to bring the popular hero from the jungles of Wakanda to the microtransaction-laden-world of modern video games, EA has announced that the first title from their newly launched studio Cliffhanger Games is currently set to be a single-player action adventure game based on Marvel’s Black Panther.
Formed under the direction of Kevin Stephens, the former Monolith Productions VP perhaps best known for his roles leading development of both Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor and its sequel Shadow of War, the fledgling studio’s first project will see them attempt “to build an expansive and reactive world that empowers players to experience what it is like to take on the mantle of Wakanda’s protector, the Black Panther.”
Alongside Stephens and a number of other Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor devs, Cliffhanger Games’ dev team will also reportedly feature other, but as-of-writing unspecified “veterans of top franchises including Halo Infinite, God of War, [and] Call of Duty”.
“We’re dedicated to delivering fans a definitive and authentic Black Panther experience, giving them more agency and control over their narrative than they have ever experienced in a story-driven video game,” said Stephens on July 10th, revealing the existence of both Cliffhanger Games and its Black Panther game. “Wakanda is a rich Super Hero sandbox, and our mission is to develop an epic world for players who love Black Panther and want to explore the world of Wakanda as much as we do.”
Noting that the game would be made in collaboration with Marvel Games, the studio head further beamed, “It’s an incredibly rare opportunity to build a new team around the values of diversity, collaboration, and empowerment.”
“We want our game to enable players to feel what it’s like to be worthy of the Black Panther mantle in unique, story-driven ways, and we want Cliffhanger Games to empower everyone on our team as we collaborate to bring this amazing world to life,” Stephens concluded the dual announcement.
To this end, the studio is currently inviting interested developers in joining their team, “which we will be building over the next few years”.
“We’re still early in development with a long road ahead,” wrote Cliffhanger Games alongside Stephens’ statement, “but we know the foundation to any great story is to build an experienced team with diverse voices and perspectives and that’s what we want to build, especially with a Super Hero as important as Black Panther.”
Interestingly, EA’s Black Panther is the second video game featuring the Wakandan Hero currently in development.
As announced in 2021 and officially teased last September, Marvel Games is also working with the newly-formed Skydance New Media, a video game-specific development arm of the Hollywood production company Skydance Media, to develop a joint Captain America/Black Panther title.
Set in World War 2, the game will put players in the boots of the respective heroes and task them with stopping a Hydra plot in Paris.
Though not outright confirmed, it appears Skydance New Media’s game will take inspiration from the 2010 miniseries Captain America/Black Panther: Flags of Our Fathers, wherein Steve Rogers teamed up with the World War 2-era Black Panther, T’Challa’s grandfather T’Chanda, to stop Hydra from invading Wakanda and using its vibranium stores to fuel their ambitions of world domination.
As of writing, no release window for Black Panther has been provided by either EA or Cliffhanger Games.