If there’s one comic book character whose only real weakness is a consistency in crappy video games, it has to be Superman. Barring the guilty pleasure that is the official Superman Returns movie tie-in game (THAT METALLO FIGHT!), it seems that the Man of Steel just cannot catch a break when it comes to performing a solo act in the video game space.
After all, how do you translate the godlike power of Superman into an interactive experience that is fun, exhilarating and able to deliver on the power fantasy that his character represents? That’s the skyscraper dilemma that Warner Bros. has been trying to leap over in a single bound for years now, as so far the best Superman game has been the one wherein the last son of Krypton has been a raging totalitarian dick in NetherRealm’s Injustice series.
Here’s a spicy bit of rumour sauce to dip your speculation chips into though: According to industry insider James Sigfield, Warner Bros. have been trying to get some form of a Superman game up, up and away into development. It’s worth taking with a pinch of krypto-salt, but according to Sigfield’s twitter thread:
- Warner Bros. began field pitches from 2013
- These pitches came from across the gaming industry
- One such pitch included an open-world game similar to Marvel’s Spider-Man and included a hefty rogues gallery
- Another pitch was based on the Superman: Unbound comic book storyline and animated film
- Superman: Unbound would have taken place inside the bottle city of Kandor that Brainiac possessed
- There were fewer open world gameplay mechanics and more limits on Superman’s vast array of powers
- Superman: Unbound was eventually cancelled, due to Warner Bros. mandate that all their hero games use the Arkham engine
- An engine that made flight nearly impossible to function properly at the time
Over on ResetEra, one member of that forum who claims to have worked for Warner Bros. Interactive says otherwise to all of these claims:
I worked at WB in 2015, and heard no rumblings of any Superman game during my time there. I didn’t work in the game department, but attended conference meetings where folk like Geoff Johns gave talks on WB plans, and anyway there are no secrets in the workplace lol…, so yeah none of these pitches would have gotten substantially far in development unfortunately. WB are all about that Batman money.
So who knows? Point is, a proper Superman game is long overdue. With Rocksteady’s Arkham series setting the benchmark with their take on Batman, Spider-Man carrying that baton in his own magnificent solo outing recently and Marvel pushing further into that sphere with an upcoming Avengers game, Warner Bros. is at risk of playing catch-up to the house of mouse yet again.
There’s a brilliant Superman game out there, just waiting to be realised and made public. Who knows, someone might be working on it right now. What a time to not have X-Ray vision so that I can confirm this.
Last Updated: November 12, 2019