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Video games have become "more and more important" to Marvel

In an interview posted today on Hollywoodreporter.com, TQ Jefferson, VP of games production for Marvel, discussed the upcoming The Amazing Spider-Man (from Activision and developer Beenox and scheduled for July 3) and Avengers games and the changing relationship the company has with the video game medium.

"Over the past decade or so," said Jefferson, "video games have become more and more important as a means to reach out to existing fans, find new ones and to innovate in the ways that we present our characters and tell stories."

Jefferson notes successes such as the Marvel: Avengers Alliance strategy game on Facebook (live since February 29 of this year) and Activision/Neversoft’s Spider-Man on the PlayStation, the latter of which he credits with helping to "reintroduce superheroes to the minds of gamers."

The recently launched Facebook game is, Jefferson says, the first step in a much larger plan to bring the Avengers to the video game world: "The Avengers are bigger than just one game, and we’re planning to allow consumers to enjoy The Avengers regardless of their preference in gameplay style or platform." He hinted that more announcements would follow soon.

So what does the Marvel executive really think of free-to-play games, such as the company's own upcoming browser-based MMO, Marvel Heroes (in development by Gazillion Entertainment)?

"In today’s economic climate," he commented, "games needed to do something to meet the consumer halfway, and free-to-play is a great first step."

It looks like Marvel will continue to develop its video game presence in months and years to come.

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