GAMES: Dark Horse Comics and HappyGiant announces Usagi Yojimbo game
HappyGiant, in association with Dark Horse Comics, announce “Usagi Yojimbo: Way of The Ronin”, a game now available for iPhones & iPads, and coming soon to Android devices and desktop PC’s (www.usagiyojimbogame.com).
In conjunction with the release of the game, Dark Horse Comics is announcing the first new Usagi Yojimbo collection after a year hiatus working on 47 Ronin. The first new book will be Usagi Yojimbo: A Town Called Hell, which will see release on July 17.
Usagi Yojimbo is the beloved character and world created by award winning author and illustrator Stan Sakai, following the tales of a ronin (masterless samurai), set in feudal Japan. This is the first videogame based on the property in over 25 years and will introduce the epic series to a new generation of fans.
“It’s been far too long since the last Usagi game, and I am so excited to be working with HappyGiant to bring Usagi and his friends back to these new platforms,” said Stan Sakai, “The game turned out great!”
“Happy Giant is thrilled to be working with Stan Sakai and Dark Horse to bring Usagi Yojimbo to the mobile and gaming worlds”, said Michael Levine, CEO of HappyGiant. “This is one of the most treasured properties in the comics world, and we are proud to be adapting it as a game for fans, and for a new generation of fans who will discover it for the first time. This is a real labor of love.”
The title is a “2D side-scrolling hack-and-slash game”, done in the comic’s art style, and in the vein of the old Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Arcade game, to which Usagi is often linked, as the characters have appeared in each other’s comics and TV series over the years. The game features over 60 different enemies, over 13 boss monsters and several of Usagi’s friends who fight along his side as companions.
Founded by veterans of LucasArts and Pileated Pictures (Pileated.com), HappyGiant develops and publishes games for mobile, tablets and emerging platforms.
About Dark Horse Comics
Founded in1986 by Mike Richardson, Dark Horse Comics has proven to be a solid example of how integrity and innovation can help broaden a unique storytelling medium and establish a small, homegrown company as an industry giant. The company is known for the progressive and creator-friendly atmosphere it provides for writers and artists. In addition to publishing comics from top talent such as Frank Miller, Mike Mignola, Neil Gaiman, Brian Wood, Gerard Way, Felicia Day, Guillermo Del Toro and comics legends such as Will Eisner, Neal Adams, and Jim Steranko, Dark Horse has developed its own successful properties such as The Mask, Ghost, Timecop, and SpyBoy. Its successful line of comics and products based on popular properties includes Star Wars, Mass Effect, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Aliens, Conan, Emily the Strange, Tim Burton’s Tragic Toys for Girls and Boys, Serenity, Game of Thrones and Domo. Today Dark Horse Comics is the largest independent comic book publisher in the US and is recognized as one of the world’s leading publishers of both creator-owned content and licensed comics material.
About Usagi Yojimbo
Usagi Yojimbo is a comic book series created by Stan Sakai in 1987. In 2011 IGN ranked Miyamoto Usagi in the top 100 comic books heroes of all time. Set primarily at the beginning of Edo period of Japan (early 17th century), with anthropomorphic animals replacing humans, the series features a rabbit ronin, Miyamoto Usagi, whom Stan Sakai based partially on the famous swordsman Miyamoto Musashi. Usagi wanders the land on a musha shugyo (warrior’s pilgrimage) occasionally selling his services as a bodyguard. Usagi Yojimbo is heavily influenced by Japanese cinema and has included references to the work of Akira Kurosawa (the title of the series is derived from Kurosawa’s 1960 film Yojimbo) and to icons of popular Japanese cinema such as Lone Wolf and Cub, Zatoichi, and Godzilla. The series is also influenced somewhat by Groo the Wanderer by Sergio Aragonés (Sakai is the letterer for that series), but the overall tone of Usagi Yojimbo is more serious and reflective.