Why Insomniac’s Wolverine Game Is So Enticing

Embracing the beast within

Key Takeaways

  • Insomniac Games is working on a new Wolverine game, which follows iconic X-Men character James "Logan" Howlett.
  • The game is said to include a full-size world for players to explore and a more mature theme and tone.
  • Members who helped lead the creative efforts on Spider-Man: Miles Morales are at the helm of the project.
A screenshot from the announcement trailer for 'Wolverine' by Insomniac Games.

Marvel

Despite being the “face” of the X-Men movie series, Wolverine’s appearances in video games often have been met with mixed or even bad reviews. Now, though, Insomniac could finally give the claw-wielding hero a story worth telling in the video game medium.

In 2018, Insomniac Games released Marvel’s Spider-Man, the first in its Marvel Game Universe. Now, following that game’s success and the success of its mini-sequel, Spider-Man: Miles Morales, the team at Insomniac is ready to face off against another challenge—bringing a Wolverine game to life.

Titled Wolverine at the moment, the game will follow the adamantium-clawed hero as he works to help people who can’t help themselves.

The game is still in early development. However, with Insomniac’s past track record, and a plan to create a game that embodies the mature themes surrounding Wolverine, himself, the upcoming superhero title sounds like it could end up being a perfect addition to the Marvel media universe.

"...having a story that isn’t completely tied to some other previous media will be a nice change of pace for the character."

Becoming a Beast

Much like some of Marvel’s other "mature" heroes, Wolverine has always skirted the line regarding his appearances in Fox’s more family-friendly movies. Sure, the X-Men movies were never rated below PG-13, but they also never fully embraced the violence, blood, and brutality that the comics often alluded to when digging deeper into Wolverine’s past and present.

With Wolverine, it sounds like Insomniac plans to approach the hero more akin to his most recent movie appearance in Logan. That violent, rebellious nature often has been a core component of the character in previous video games and movies, though not many have really explored it as deeply as the film Logan did in 2017. If Insomniac Games can tap into that same brutal, violent, animal nature that fans loved in Logan, it could end up with an instant hit.

Raising the Bar 

Another major reason I’m excited about an Insomniac Games-created Wolverine game, though, is because Wolverine’s appearance in past video games just hasn’t been that great. There have been several attempts to bring the hero to the video game world over the years, starting all the way back in the early 1990s with a game simply titled Wolverine.

This evolved over the years, with Wolverine making appearances in other titles, both as a playable character and a solo character in his own games. Most of these were received with mixed reviews and fell into the same tropes that many movie tie-in games did during the 2000s.

The last game that revolved around the character, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, wasn’t the worst adaption ever. Still, it also never fully captured the spirit of the character the way that Insomniac could in a new full-fledged story.

Insomniac’s upcoming Wolverine game is also doing something different from all the most recent titles too. Instead of focusing on following the story introduced alongside the film series for the X-Men, Insomniac will take the character and introduce its own twists and turns, similar to how it did with Spider-Man and Spider-Man: Miles Morales.

A New Legacy

While we don’t need a new origin story or anything to help push Wolverine forward, having a story that isn’t completely tied to some other previous media will be a nice change of pace for the character.

It’s also a chance for someone else to step forward and bring Logan to life now that Hugh Jackman has stepped down from the role after his appearance in Logan in 2017.

A screenshot from the 'Wolverine' announcement trailer.

Marvel

Others like Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker from Star Wars and the voice of multiple other characters in animated shows) have brought the character to life in video games and other media, but this will be the first notable time that Wolverine has appeared in anything since Logan.

Looking outward from the overall appeal of a Wolverine game that focuses on the animalistic nature of the character, there’s also the excitement surrounding Insomniac taking yet another step into the Marvel universe.

The studio’s work on Spider-Man and Spider-Man: Miles Morales has earned it a lot of goodwill and faith, something that fans are eager to see put to work on a faithful and engaging adaption of Wolverine.

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