Midnight Suns Director Didn’t Get Ahead About Plot Similarities In New Doctor Strange Movie

midnight suns, the upcoming Marvel RPG from Firaxis, is based on the ’90s ‘Midnight Sons’ occult comic book series. It’s heavy on magic, ghosts, and demons, which creative director Jake Solomon thought would set it apart from the Universe shows and movies. Marvel cinematic, as the Avengers are often busy with space aliens rather than ancient tomes of evil magic. What Solomon didn’t know was that the world’s biggest fan of evil magical books was going to direct a Doctor Strange movie.

Solomon was unaware that Sam Raimi’s Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness, which was released in theaters on May 6, would include the evil spellbook Darkhold, which also appears in Midnight Suns. There was no “collaboration”, he says when speaking to me for a story that will appear in the next issue of PC Gamer Magazine. The overlap does not end there.

“Hero or Villain? Is she a Hero or Villain?” Solomon asks him to switch between slides of the good and bad versions of the Scarlet Witch that appear in Midnight Suns. “Someone should make a movie out of this!”

It was only a matter of time before some of these ideas came out.

Jake Solomon

He’s kidding – mostly. I think Solomon legitimately wanted to be the first to delve into the occult Marvel stuff. The Midnight Suns slogan is “explore the darker side of Marvel”. That line can now be mistaken as a catchphrase for Raimi’s film, which some found too gruesome and scary for its PG-13 rating. But Solomon never believed that he and his team at Firaxis were the only creative people in the world who thought it would be cool to revisit Marvel’s ghost stories and the Elder Gods.

“[The overlap] it was a total surprise, but it was a surprise and not a surprise to me,” says Solomon. We were like, ‘Hey, aren’t they really going to use the Darkhold at some point?’ It was only a matter of time before some of these ideas were released.”

Marvel’s shows and movies didn’t use all of the plot devices that Solomon and his team put into Midnight Suns. Solomon says he would sometimes text the game’s narrative director after watching an episode of WandaVison, saying something like, “We’re fine, we’re fine for a little while longer, they didn’t mention it.” [an aspect of Midnight Suns].”

Still, Midnight Suns has started to feel like part of some big mysticism initiative by Marvel, even if it isn’t. There’s now a Moon Knight show and a Morbius movie – both characters that were part of the original Midnight Sons – and there’s a new Blade movie coming next year.

After playing some Midnight Suns for my preview, I can say that it looks different from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Its story and characters are based on Solomon and company’s favorite moments from those old comics. The Midnight Suns version of Doctor Strange is “more demanding” and “flasier” than the Benedict Cumberbatch film version, for example.

“In the Midnight Sons comic book series that this game is inspired by, Doctor Strange would always show up and have this amazing cape,” says Solomon, “and he’d say, ‘I could stop her, but if I did, the force of my energies would destroy the universe. Good luck!’ And then he’d fly away, and you’d be like, ‘OK, Doctor Strange’.”

Strange offers a version of this line at the beginning of Midnight Suns when Tony Stark asks him to tell the demon heating his forge (I know as much as you do) to raise the temperature by a few hundred Kelvin.

“I could,” says Doctor Strange. “Nonethelesscan break the containment spell preventing you from incinerate this facility.”

While the Midnight Suns characters inevitably look a bit like the movie actors they’ve been associated with, I didn’t find the situation as strange as it did in the Crystal Dynamics Avengers game, probably because Firaxis doesn’t strive for such a cinematic look. The downside is that when they’re talking to each other, the Firaxis versions sometimes look a bit like action figures come to life. The anime-inspired combat animations are great, though.

Midnight Suns will be released on October 7th. You can read about what tactical combat is like at my previous practiceand more about the characters and story in the next issue of PC Gamer.

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