Avengers Academy 2.0 brings massive combat, story, and character changes

We’re coming up on the second anniversary for “Marvel Avengers Academy”! The fan-favorite game has continued to add new characters and build an amazing story over these two years, but one mystery has yet to be uncovered. What is up with that timefog? What is Fury hiding? Why does he have an Infinity Gauntlet? Who is that Thanos guy the Guardians keep talking about? Well, now’s the time to get some answers.

Along with this new story content, there are some major changes coming to the game. Combat, questions, hero outfits, and much more are seeing overhauls. We sat down with Allen Warner – Senior Narrative Designer at TinyCo – for an expansive interview about all the changes and new features we’ll see when Avengers Academy 2.0 launches soon. 

Marvel.com: First, let’s talk big changes. Combat has been a key component of most major Avengers Academy events, and now it’s being overhauled. How will players take the fight to the many Marvel villains they’ll face going forward?

Allen Warner: There are a lot of big changes coming to the game, but none bigger than the way players interact with combat. We really wanted to make combat more interactive and strategic to make the entire experience more fun, immersive, and rewarding for players. You’ll now have more control over giving yourself the best chance to succeed by getting to choose your team of heroes from a larger roster, choosing their alignment based on their unique abilities and class, and by choosing their individual actions and attacks. Heroes will also have individual health bars, so your team will be able to keep fighting if one of your heroes goes down. All of this will be supported by a robust hero management system, new combat animations for every hero, tons of new combat environments, and new villains to fight.

Marvel.com: So combat will now be used outside of events?

Allen Warner: Yes, there will be new quests, maps, and characters added to the main game, and combat will be a big part of the overall experience. The faculty is preparing for war against Thanos, the imprisoned villains are on the verge of activating their master plan, and the students are getting closer to uncovering the mysteries behind what Nick Fury keeps in his underground vaults, and how their universe came into existence. They’ll have to fight their way through Thanos and his forces to get those answers.

Marvel.com: Speaking of the Academy students and faculty, how do the other ways we interact with them change in 2.0?

Allen Warner: Hero management will be a major part of the revamped Avengers Academy experience. From a gameplay perspective, heroes will feel more unique with new special abilities, classes, and animations. We really wanted to streamline the process of upgrading and ranking up heroes, so there will be fewer rank-up items to collect, and players will have more control over who they want to rank up, making ranking up a specific hero easier. Unlike the current game, upgrading your hero’s combat stats persists after an event is over, and can be used in the main game and future events.

Marvel.com: This is massive! Now, players have been asking for a while to see their favorite event and late-game heroes suit up in new outfits. Is there any chance we’ll see this here?

Allen Warner: Yes, this is another huge change. We’ve always relied on the first few heroes in the game for new outfits because we wanted to make sure that new players would be able to acquire and enjoy those outfits, but the revamped structure allows us to give outfits to a wider variety of characters. I love Iron Man, Wasp, Loki, Black Widow, and Falcon, but they’ve had their share of awesome outfits, and it’s time for the rest of the team to have a chance. We’ll be focusing on heroes who’ve had zero to few alternative looks to this point, which is really exciting. You can expect to see new outfits for Black Panther, Vision, Hawkeye, Winter Soldier, and many, many more in the coming months.

Marvel.com: Along with these cosmetic dreams, fans of the game have been hoping for the next zone of the timefog to open up and for more main story quests to be added. Can you share anything new on this front?

Allen Warner: We’ve talked about it, and are continuing to talk about it, but this one is a little more complicated. The issue is that when we open a new zone, it creates more space for characters, decorations, and buildings, which makes the game more difficult to run on older devices. We don’t want to exclude our players with older devices that wouldn’t be able to run the game properly, so we’re actively working on a solution. I definitely understand the frustration. Players have earned a bunch of awesome decorations and buildings that they want to showcase, but have to keep them in storage because they don’t have enough space. I’m hopeful that we’ll figure something out soon.

Marvel.com: The story of Avengers Academy has arguably been building to this point since launch. What can you tell us about the next act and everything in store for our heroes, Thanos, and the Academy universe at large?

Allen Warner: Yeah, the first thing I ever wrote for this game was the story of how this universe was created, and we’re finally getting to the point where that story can be told, which is really exciting. I don’t want to give too much away, but we know that the faculty has been aware of Thanos from the beginning. They’ve met before, and it didn’t go well for the Avengers. We know that Nick Fury is hiding artifacts, weapons, and possibly even heroes and villains in his secret underground vaults. His second Infinity Gauntlet is a clue to how powerful some of these things might be. We know that Mephisto, Hela, Madame Gao, and the rest of the imprisoned villains are plotting something, and that somehow they’ve been able to contact Thanos, who most likely orchestrated their plan from the beginning. We also know that there’s a mole on campus. Someone who every hero trusts is either betraying their fellow Avengers, or isn’t who we think they are. Maybe both. Lastly, we know that Thanos is coming. His arrival will set all of these things in motion, and eventually answer all of these questions, while spinning this world into a wild new direction.

Marvel.com: Will the structure of missions or quests change as this new content is introduced?

Allen Warner: Missions are changing drastically, and I think it will create a much better experience for the player. The new Mission Board is more streamlined and organized to give players more agency, and better suit their style and needs. If they’re only interested in completing story missions, they can focus on those. If they only want to gather items to upgrade a specific hero, they can do that too. It will be easier for players to get what they’re most interested in getting, so the overall experience will be more suited to their play style, and focusing on what they enjoy most in the game.

Marvel.com: Along with Thanos’s impending arrival, Voyager is coming to campus! The hero – recently created by Mark Waid, Al Ewing, Jim Zub, and Pepe Larraz for “Avengers: No Surrender” – makes her Marvel Games debut here. How does she come to join the Academy?

Allen Warner: Yeah, this is really exciting. I always think it’s so cool when we can bring a character from the comics to games for the first time, and Voyager is an awesome hero who’s a great fit for our world. I don’t want to give away too much about how she’s involved yet, but in the books, she’s a character from a different place and time, and our world is filled with alternate universes and time anomalies, so it shouldn’t be too difficult for her to find her way here. Her visual ranks and animations are really cool, and I think people are going to love adding her to the team.

Voyager

Marvel.com: How can players add her to their Academy roster?

Allen Warner: Voyager will be a log-in bonus character, so everyone will be able to get her just by logging in each day during the time she’s available. The more you log in during that period of time, the stronger your Voyager will be when she enters the campus. There are even more perks for Marvel Insiders.

Marvel.com: What does the Marvel Insider integration mean for Avengers Academy players? How can they join the program?

Allen Warner: If you’re a Marvel Insider, or decide to become an Insider, and you submit your Avengers Academy game ID through the site, you’ll automatically get Insider points. If you recruit Voyager in the given time period, you’ll get even more Insider points. Anyone with Marvel Insider points can use them to purchase a special Voyager in-game trophy that generates upgrade items.

Marvel.com: There’s a whole lot of new stuff coming to campus. Will we also see new main buildings and locations?

Allen Warner: There will be a new upgradeable building Nick Fury places on campus to help train the heroes and protect the school from Thanos’s inevitable attack, and there will be a ton of new locations for your heroes to travel and fight various villains and factions across the globe and beyond.

Marvel.com: With all these changes, a lot of current materials and mechanics are changing. What will this mean for existing players – both recent and longtime?

Allen Warner: Existing players will keep everything they’ve earned, and will be given a proportional amount of the new upgrade materials for all of the rank-ups they have in the current game. This revamped version of Avengers Academy is a new experience, and we believe a better experience, but it will still be very familiar to our existing players, and if you enjoy it now, we hope you’ll enjoy the new experience even more.

Marvel.com: What are you most excited to share with players as 2.0 officially launches?

Allen Warner: I’m excited about all of the opportunities for new stories, outfits, characters, locales, and an experience that gives players more control to play the game they want to play it, and focus on the parts of the game that they find the most fun. It feels like an evolution of the original game, and I’m excited to see where it goes, while putting the bow on some long-running storylines, and spinning up some new ones.

Marvel.com: Is there anything else you’d like to tell us about this humongous new update?

Allen Warner: I just hope everyone enjoys the new experience, and I can wait for everyone to see all of the cool new things we have in store!

For all the latest news and updates on “Marvel Avengers Academy,” visit Marvel.com and follow us on Twitter @MarvelGames!

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This summer, an entire universe. Once and for all.

Tonight, during the Big Game, we got another glimpse of the highly-anticipated Marvel Studios’ “Avengers: Infinity War.’ Check it out above!

As the Avengers and their allies have continued to protect the world from threats too large for any one hero to handle, a new danger has emerged from the cosmic shadows: Thanos. A despot of intergalactic infamy, his goal is to collect all six Infinity Stones, artifacts of unimaginable power, and use them to inflict his twisted will on all of reality. Everything the Avengers have fought for has led up to this moment – the fate of Earth and existence itself has never been more uncertain.

“Avengers: Infinity War” opens in theaters on May 4. Stay tuned to Marvel.com, follow @Avengers on Twitter, and Like “The Avengers” on Facebook for the latest on the Avengers as it develops!

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Donny Cates takes us to the end of the line, a future where Thanos has finally won!

When writer Donny Cates and artist Geoff Shaw took over the Mad Titan’s solo adventures in THANOS #13, they came out of the gate guns blazing! With their new arc “Thanos Wins,” Thanos is whisked away to the future by a mysterious new character called The Rider, a cosmic baddie who very closely resembles a certain other flame headed denizen of Mephisto. But when Thanos arrives to this future, he meets The Rider’s boss, a future version of himself!

We caught up with Donny to talk about the future and getting so deep into Thanos’ head it gave him literal nightmares.

Marvel.com: Once you found out you would be taking over this solo title, what was your entry point into Thanos’ psyche?

Donny Cates: I’ve been a huge fan of the cosmic side of Marvel since I was a very young lad and Thanos, in particular, has always been one of my favorite characters. There’s really no way that Jordan White, our editor, could have known that! He’s such a complicated character, even though he’s sometimes written off as being one note. As far as getting into the character, you know how every Marvel book, on the title page, has that little blurb describing who the main character is? For Spider-Man, it always says, “Peter Parker was bitten by a radioactive spider, blah blah blah,” right? Well, for any of the THANOS solo issues, it just says, “A total obsession with power drives him to control the forces of the universe.”

He’s had different seats of power. He’s been a ruler, a despot. But at the end of the day, what does he really want? And what happens when he finally gets it? That’s what everything bloomed out of, reading that one sentence description of him and saying let’s just do it! Let’s just finish that sentence that begins every Thanos issue. Let’s give it to him and see what happens then.

Marvel.com: The premise of ‘Thanos Wins’ is wrapped up in time travel and the future inevitability of the Mad Titan finally getting what he wants. How in depth into his victory do you plan to go and how is seeing this potential future going to change Thanos?

Donny Cates: We’re going to get way into it, man! Every single issue in the arc flashes back and forward and moves around in time a lot. As the series goes along, you will get a complete picture of how Thanos came to be where he is at the end of issue #13, where we see him clothed in immense power, with his companion and right hand man, The Rider, seemingly the only thing left alive. That’s not something we’re doing as a cheap, one page gag. That’s the whole series. Really getting to the bottom of how Thanos goes from destroying the Chitauri at the beginning of issue #13, to what we call King Thanos, will be spelled out in great detail in the next few issues.

THANOS #14 has a lot and it is unbelievable. You know, I write these issues and I turn them in, get some notes and then when the art comes back with the words and colors and everything, I get to re-read them again months later. Every single time a new issue comes in, I read it and think, “They’re really letting me do that? They’re going to let me get away with this?” I’m consistently blown away with just how out there and crazy we’re going.

It’s a huge credit to Jordan White, who believed in this and got behind it to say this is what a Thanos book should be. Every issue should just be as hard as it can be.

Marvel.com: What can you tell us about Thanos’ future Ghost Rider friend? What was the genesis of that idea?

Donny Cates: The Rider, as a character, is one of those back pocket ideas I think every writer who wants to someday write for a big comics publisher has. Something you fill up a notebook with, or, if you’re like me, use the notes app on your phone and just fill it to the brim with crazy stuff. The Rider, his origins, and who he really is has been in my back pocket for years. I actually spoke with an editor at Marvel back in 2013 or 2014 at New York Comic-Con and he asked what I’d want to do at Marvel. I told him about The Rider, this cosmic Ghost Rider, and I told him who he really is and how I’d reveal it. I remember that editor saying that’s insane, the craziest thing he’d ever heard. So, it’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time.

He became a natural fit for this story. I knew we wanted Young Thanos, well young comparatively speaking to King Thanos, to be ripped from time and taken to meet his future self. When I was working on the pitch, I tried to figure out who could fill that role and realized The Rider was a perfect fit! Then, when I started writing him, how he speaks and how he sounds formed this little balancing point to how overly somber Thanos as a character can be. The two vibrate with each other in a way I really enjoyed. He’s the rare character who can actually call Thanos out on how much of a bummer he is, especially when he’s with both Thanoses.

For anyone who has theories about who The Rider is, I would like to hear them. It’s the big reveal at the end of this arc. So, anyone who wants to comment on Twitter or put their theories in, I won’t confirm or deny anything, but please tag it as #WhoIsTheRider and let me know what you think!

Marvel.com: What’s your process like with artist Geoff Shaw? Since you two have a rapport, does that make creating the book easier?

Donny Cates: I’ve been on THANOS longer than STRANGE, so coming onto my first big Marvel book with Geoff, there is the most supportive feeling, the most comfortable feeling. I know how to write for him and he knows how to draw for me. He really knows how to pull certain stuff out of my scripts. We’ve been working together for five years now, starting with “Buzzkill” back in the day. Over the years, just by virtue of working so closely, we’ve come best friends. Going into something where Marvel gives you the keys to the kingdom and lets you play with all the toys, getting into that with your best friend, who is also this phenomenal talent, is surreal and I couldn’t ask for a better collaborator.

With some artists, you’re not able to build the same rapport or talk to them regularly, because you’ve just been thrown together or they’re in Argentina or something, but Geoff and I talk all the time. That’s the essence of comics to me, is getting on the phone or in the same room and just hashing it out. The same goes for Antonio Fabela, our colorist. Geoff and I had never worked with him before but were excited to see what he could do. It felt like he walked right onto the team, read the room and could match the insanity we were throwing down. Letterer Clayton Cowles, too! He’s added so much, differentiating Thanos and King Thanos in speech bubbles. It’s like we’re all jamming on the same frequency.

Marvel.com: You’ve said that writing Thanos has been a scary experience. What’s the darkest place getting into his head has taken your own mind?

Donny Cates: I had said in a previous interview that I had nightmares about Thanos when I first started writing the book. I think most people thought I was exaggerating or joking, but I was not. I tend to get really obsessive about a character when I first start on a book. I don’t stay that way. My wife makes fun of me all the time for it. On THANOS, I was deep in it—unconsciously changing the way I spoke, or sitting in chairs the way Thanos might sit. I was in a dark place and had a nightmare where I was being chased by Thanos through a desert landscape. I could only hear his footsteps, feel the ground shake and sense his breathing. One of those dreams where you try to run and you can’t. It was really scary!

I woke up covered in sweat and I’m not a person who has nightmares. I think that people, as they read this first arc, anyone who thought I was kidding about that or made fun of me for it is going to see what I’m talking about. This book is brutal and intense. 

Catch the next chapter of “Thanos Wins” in THANOS #14, from Donny Cates and Geoff Shaw, on December 27!

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In theaters May 4.

There was an idea…

The first official trailer for Marvel Studios’ “Avengers: Infinity War” has finally arrived. We began our Marvel Cinematic Universe journey together back in 2008. All roads lead to Thanos next year. Get your first official look at “Avengers: Infinity War” right here on Marvel.com above.

Following the events of “Captain America: Civil War,” the Avengers as we know it no longer exists. Lines were drawn; sides were chosen. The Avengers is nothing more than a team name without any team members. Can Earth’s Mightiest Heroes put aside their differences and unite once more? Do they even stand a chance against the Mad Titan who delights in their failure and desperation? Can they stop his thirst for power and chaos as he begins to collect the Infinity Stones?

The trailer packs as many super heroes as it can in a mere 2 minutes and 30 seconds: Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Captain America (Chris Evans), Scarlett Johansson (Black Widow), Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Falcon (Anthony Mackie), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), the Vision (Paul Bettany), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman), Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), Spider-Man (Tom Holland), Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch), Loki (Tom Hiddleston), Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), and so much more.

“You can fight it. You can run from it. But destiny still arrives.” We know the trailer brought a smile to your face as much as pain and suffering put one on Thanos’ face. Now excuse us while we watch the trailer a thousand more times!

See the culmination of the last decade of the Marvel Cinematic Universe when “Avengers: Infinity War” opens in theaters on May 4, 2018. Stay tuned to Marvel.com, follow @Avengers on Twitter, and Like “The Avengers” on Facebook for the latest on the Avengers and the rest of the MCU as it develops!

 

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Artist Geoff Shaw promises a Marvel Universe like you’ve never seen!

Every villain in history has wanted something. That ultimate goal or triumph that the heroes we know and love tend to get in the way of. But what happens if one of them wins? That’s the story that the new THANOS creative team of writer Donny Cates and Geoff Shaw will explore this fall. The duo threatens to do what no one else ever has: let the Mad Titan achieve ultimate victory! However, to see what happens when the Death-obsessed warrior does next you’ll have to check out the new run starting with THANOS #13 on November 22.

We talked with Shaw about working with longtime friend Cates, rooting for the bad guy, and offering up sights previously unseen!

Marvel.com: How does it feel to begin your Marvel art career drawing one of the most dangerous villains in the universe?

Geoff Shaw: It’s unbelievable! Marvel has always been my dream job, and to start things off with their flagship villain is a surreal honor. I may need to be pinched.

Marvel.com: As an artist, what is it about Thanos as a character that intrigues you?

Geoff Shaw: There’s something really exciting and challenging about drawing a villain over say, a super hero. On the one hand, you want to root for him; after all, I think everyone has fantasized about being the bad guy. As an artist, you really get to act out these characters to bring them to life, so it’s been fun to jump into his boots.

At the same time he’s the main character, and in a weird way you need to identify with and root for him, and there I think there is a depth to him that is endearing, albeit very disturbing.

Marvel.com: With a character as powerful as Thanos, is it difficult coming up with designs for characters or elements that will actually challenge and threaten him?

Geoff Shaw: Threatening for Thanos? That’s a very short to-do list! [This story] is called “Thanos Triumphant” after all.

Marvel.com: You and Donny have worked together a number of times. How has your collaborative relationship evolved in that time?

Geoff Shaw: Aside from [Donny] being one of my best friends, creatively we share a very similar sensibility for storytelling and a strong love for character. Between the script and page, the process is very fluid. I’ve always loved Donny’s writing and he really trusts my eye for the page. That creative comfort has only grown over time. Also, I think we both really love and believe in the stories we tell, so that makes all the difference.

Marvel.com: It looks like THANOS will deal with a lot of darkness both in color and tone. How is it dealing with all that on the page?

Geoff Shaw: A terrifying blast! Thanos does bring with him a darkness that we dive head first into. It’s flat out brutal! That said, there is a surprising amount of fun here too.

We take Thanos to some insane places—places I never thought in a million years I would see, let alone get to draw! This is the Marvel Universe after all, but it’s like you’ve never seen it before.

Donny Cates and Geoff Shaw explore the Mad Titan’s victory march starting with THANOS #13 on November 22.

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New series writer Donny Cates dives into Marvel Legacy!

On November 22, the bad guy wins.

Marvel Legacy gets a taste of unrepentant villainy as the Mad Titan consolidates his power and threatens the Marvel Universe like never before in THANOS #13!

A dynamo new creative duo—writer Donny Cates and artist Geoff Shaw—take over the book, which kicks off with an arc ominously titled “Thanos Wins.” And when Thanos wins, a lot of other people lose…

We spoke with Donny to get a clearer picture of the coming threat.

Marvel.com: We know that Thanos has an obsession with Death—but other than a fascination with the macabre, what makes the Mad Titan tick?

Donny Cates: Well, that’s something that we’ll be really diving into in this first arc. I’ve said in past interviews that I oddly (and perhaps worryingly) relate to the Mad Titan. And I think it comes down to his insane drive. I can relate to that (I’m writing like eight books right now) in a very real way. This idea that no matter how high Thanos climbs, it will never be enough for him. He’s searching for something he will never find. I think there’s something quite pretty about that.

In an evil murderous way, of course.

Marvel.com: How would Thanos describe his own legacy?

Donny Cates: Thanos has a very singular drive, right? He just wants her. So I don’t know that he necessarily thinks about how he’ll be remembered, you know? In his ideal world, everyone else is dead. So I think Thanos spends little time fretting over his legacy.

Marvel.com: The words “Thanos Wins” can’t be good for everyone. What will those two words mean for the Marvel Universe?

Donny Cates: I’ll say this: as bad as you think it might be for your favorite characters, you can’t imagine how horrific it’s really going to be. This isn’t a very nice book. I mean, its super fun…but yeah, don’t read it late at night. It has been by far the most brutal thing I’ve ever written. It gave me nightmares.

Marvel.com: Will Thanos be he making any allies to achieve his goals?

Donny Cates: There will be one ally that I think people will get a kick out of. He’s this cosmic lunatic with a flaming skull and a super rad space motorcycle. He’s my favorite character of all time. He’s very…mysterious. I look forward to people trying to figure out who he really is.

I can’t wait for this book to actually come out so I can answer your questions honestly! [Laughs] This book has been so much fun, and it’s my favorite thing I’ve ever written, and I want to talk about it so bad, but, alas…

Marvel.com: Last question: would you describe Thanos as misunderstood or just totally insane?

Donny Cates: Yes.

Join Donny Cates and artist Geoff Shaw for THANOS #13 on November 22!

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Donny Cates and Geoff Shaw plot a Marvel Legacy course for destruction!

What happens when Thanos wins?

Prepare to find out when writer Donny Cates and artist Geoff Shaw, the critically acclaimed team behind the series God Country, answer that question with a story set to rock the Universe. On November 22, the Mad Titan leaps into the Marvel Legacy era with THANOS #13!

We caught up with Donny to hear what he has in store for the cosmic conqueror.

Marvel.com: How did your involvement in THANOS come about? What attracted you to writing this book?

Donny Cates: Editor extraordinaire Jordan D. White called me and asked if I’d like to write the book! I believe he and [Editor-in-Chief] Axel Alonso enjoyed my previous work with Geoff, which led to both of us being approached for the project.

As for what attracted me to the book, I have always been such a huge fan of Marvel cosmic stories—and of Thanos especially. It’s funny because I don’t think Jordan knew that when he asked if I wanted to join the project. But I have to admit that when I got that call, I nearly cried when he told me which book I’d be working on. It really is such a dream come true to work with the Mad Titan. I’m a kid in a candy store on this project.

Marvel.com: Thanos has a big fan base despite being a “bad guy.” What do you think makes him so appealing to readers?

Donny Cates: I think Thanos’ goals are so clear, understandable—and disturbingly relatable! That being said, everyone likes a bad guy, and everyone can be attracted to a bad guy whose goals are as…cosmically abstract as Thanos’ are. He’s a curious beast, because what he wants—his biggest goals in life—are so horrific and cruel, but ultimately he does everything out of love. It’s just fascinating to watch. He’s endlessly layered and complex, but at the same time he’s straightforward and brutal.

Marvel.com: How did you and Geoff Shaw first meetand what’s it like working in the Marvel Universe with him?

Donny Cates: Geoff and I actually met back in art school at the Savannah College of Art and Design. Geoff was this phenom artist and just an amazing guy, and I knew even back then that he was going to be something special; someone important. I wanted to work with him from the first moment I saw his work, and first got my chance with a book we did called Buzzkill. Since then, we’ve done three books together, and over the years we’ve become really close friends. I am honored to have him at my side on our first big adventure into the Marvel cosmos. It’s so comforting knowing that he’s here. I love that Shaw fella!

Marvel.com: What do the two of you have planned for the Mad Titan?

Donny Cates: We have some pretty insane plans! When I first turned in my outline for the book, I was certain Marvel was going to make me tame it down or alter it—just because of the massive scope of everything. I put in all of the characters and big moments that I’ve always wanted to play with. I turned my synopsis in, and to my utter shock—and joy—all these insane things were approved.

We really went big with the Thanos Wins arc—and the subsequent arcs that follow it. It’s really so much fun. Going big is the only way to deal with Thanos. Go big or go home.

Marvel.com: The previous THANOS series featured several regular supporting characters that constituted a “family,” including Nebula, Starfox, and Thane. Which supporting characters might we see in your book?

Donny Cates: I really can’t comment on this one actually, as a huge part of this upcoming arc depends on some rather shocking supporting characters. Rest assured, however, that as a massive Thanos fan myself, I want to get my hands on all of his supporting cast at some point. That being said, keep your eyes peeled for some great new characters as well. That’s been the best part of all of this for me—getting to add to this incredible cosmic cast. I think people are going to have a great time with this book. I know I am!

THANOS #13, by Donny Cates and artist Geoff Shaw, drops on November 22!

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See how a battle with Thanos over his son irrevocably changes the Inhumans forever!

Bred by an alien race to be a warrior caste and possessing alien DNA, the Inhumans exist as humans possessed of incredible and otherworldly powers when exposed to the substance known as Terrigen. Living secretly, for the most part, among their fellow man, the Inhumans forge their own destiny as a separate society. Dig into the history of the Inhumans with these Marvel Unlimited comics in preparation for “Marvel’s Inhumans” heading to IMAX and ABC this fall!

After putting his spin on the Fantastic Four, Jonathan Hickman set his sights on the Avengers and the whole Marvel Universe beyond that. He started weaving an epic story that ultimately ended with SECRET WARS, but began in the pages of NEW AVENGERS and THE AVENGERS. Smack dab in the middle, he threatened the entire planet with one angry god: Thanos!

INFINITY ran through both Avengers books as well as its own six issue, self-titled limited series and dealt with Thanos, his Black Order and their dastardly plans. While many of the Avengers headed into outer space to fight one front, Iron Man, Mr. Fantastic, Namor, Dr. Strange, Black Panther and others remained on Earth where the Black Order struck on Thanos’ orders.

One of Thanos’ Outriders snuck into Attilan and read Black Bolt’s mind, revealing that he and the other members of the Illuminati once held the Infinity Gems. Meanwhile, Maximus worked on finding a dimension so the king could converse and also a Terrigen Bomb, both at Blackagar’s request.

Thanos then sent Corvus Glaive to request that the Inhumans kill all of their own between the ages of 16 and 22. It didn’t take long for Black Bolt to realize that this covered the Mad Titan’s true intention, to find his long-lost son, Thane!

Black Bolt then sent the Inhumans away and met with Thanos alone on Attilan. Refusing to give quarter, Black Bolt shouted at his opposition and destroyed the city himself, but not his foe. The attack also unleashed the Terrigen Bomb which started changing anyone with Inhuman genes around the world, including Thane who developed some kind of death-granting powers.

Thanos attained the upper hand on Black Bolt, took him to Wakanda’s Necropolis and attached him to a machine to use the king as a weapon. Later, Maximus of all Inhumans actually saved the day with help from Lockjaw to kill the Black Order’s Supergiant.

Having survived the ordeal, Black Bolt and Maximus discussed the future of the Inhumans high in the Himalayas. Well, Maximus did the talking as you can imagine. Anyway, Blackagar’s brother pointed out that the Terrigen Bomb actually marked the creation of a new age for Inhumans. At the very end of the story, they realized that Black Bolt’s power had been greatly reduced and planned on keeping it a secret from everyone else.

THE INHUMAN CONDITION

If you haven’t readINFINITY, you might be wondering why Thanos demanded Thane’s location from Black Bolt when the offspring didn’t actually reside in Attilan. As explained in FANTASTIC FOUR #577 – another Hickman-penned entry – a long ago argument amongst Inhuman royals lead to a split wherein each one left with their own people to populate different areas. Each group developed their own brand of Terrigenesis. The group that wound up in the hidden city of Orollan, but before that encountered Thanos. One of the women returned with the Titan’s spawn growing inside her. Thane turned into an adept healer until his true nature came to the surface when Black Bolt set off the Terrigen Bomb.

Find out what happens after the Terrigent Mist start spreading across the Earth in the INHUMANITY event!

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Thanos stands triumphant at the D23 Expo Marvel Studios booth.

After a full first day of D23 Expo you’d think we couldn’t follow it up with more, but Saturday was even bigger, and much, much, badder as Josh Brolin held court at the Marvel booth.

Fresh off his surprise appearance with the cast “Avengers: Infinity War” at the Disney, Marvel Studios & Lucasfilm- Live Action panel, Josh Brolin met with fans for a signing in front of his children — the Children of Thanos! The maquettes were unveiled for his appearance and fans were excited to get an up close look at Corvus Glaive, Proxima Midnight, Ebony Maw, and Cull Obsidian.

Brolin even had an encounter with a real life Avenger, although this one was considerably shorter and much more adorable.

On the show floor the Disney Consumer Products Pavilion showcased new and exciting home products for fans to live their best Marvel life. On display were backpacks, workout gear, and if you’re worthy enough, a Mjolnir pendant made to compliment the mightiest of outfits. Even the greatest superhero would be exhausted from all that shopping, luckily free coffee was up for grabs adorned with the face of a familiar looking webslinger.

One more day to go! Follow @marvel on twitter to get all the up to date D23 Expo news throughout the weekend! 

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Thanos artist Germán Peralta reveals the God Quarry in exclusive pages!

They say that no one’s ever returned from the God Quarry. Then again, no one like the Mad Titan has descended into the pit before!

To see exactly how this plays out, you’ll have to pick up THANOS #9 on July 26. The story, by writer Jeff Lemire and artist Germán Peralta, marks the duo’s third issue together on the title, but they seem to be hitting it off quite well as they continue to chronicle their protagonist’s solo adventures in space.

We talked with Peralta about capturing the complexity of his title character, working with Lemire, and building the God Quarry!

Marvel.com: Given Thanos’ status as a cosmic level villain, do you approach him any differently than you might a more straight-forward hero?

Germán Peralta: Thanos is one of my favorite characters in the Marvel Universe. I drew a lot of fan art about him. I like his aesthetic as much as his personality. When I found out I was going to draw him, I started to imagine how to put my “touch” on him without leaving aside the great work Mike Deodato did in the previous issues.

The approach I use to draw a villain of these characteristics is very different from a super hero. I can play a lot with his expressions without the fear of making him look funny or grotesque, either with his face or his body language. In fact, I’ve always been more interested in the villains. I believe they’re the ones who make a hero, heroic. In this case, Jeff Lemire did excellent work with Thanos’ personality, giving him a different twist to his character, but never losing sight of who he really is. Having the chance to be a part of this character’s story is a real pleasure.

Marvel.com: Thanos is such a complicated figure. From a physicality perspective, what are the key elements that really define him?

Germán Peralta: I think that the thing that makes the Mad Titan interesting is the dichotomy between his hunger for power and the emptiness inside him. It’s like he always wanted to fill that emptiness with power but it’s never enough. It’s interesting how inside him coexists the madness and the calmness, the furious strength with the absolute intelligence. He could have everything but he always wants more and he never gets it00but he’ll destroy everything in its way to get it.

Marvel.com: This issue finds Thanos heading into the God Quarry, what can you tell us about that very intriguing location?

Germán Peralta: I really enjoyed that conclusion when I read the script. This is a place of desolation, where it doesn’t matter how powerful you are, you have absolutely no chance against the power who reigns there. It doesn’t matter your size, your strength, how important you are in the history of the universe, you’re going to feel like a scared puppy in there, surrounded by those colossi who couldn’t do anything to save themselves from being trapped between those walls and from that pit.

Marvel.com: What was the design process like for the God Quarry?

Germán Peralta: I knew this was going to be an important place in the next issues but I also imagined this was an important place for Jeff too, since he created it in his mind and I didn’t want to ruin that. I consider it really important to work alongside the writer because every page is created by both of us. And the fact of knowing what Jeff had in his mind when he imagined this scenario was as important to me as what I had at the moment of doing the sketches.

Luckily, we both had a similar image in our minds; I based my design on a mine pit but without the necessary levels to go back up. It’s a hole with unknown depth because the only thing you can see are more and more petrified bodies. It was very important for me to emphasize the lack of hope against this power; that the ones who fell there, even Thanos, think, “What do I have that they didn’t to not finish as they finished?” There are some references to see the magnitude of the beings who are, or rather who were, really powerful.

Marvel.com: How has it been working with Jeff on this series so far? Since he’s an artist as well, does that change how you two might discuss a scene?

Germán Peralta: I can’t complain about the writers I [have] worked with. Jeff is a great writer and also a great artist. Saying that, he’s someone who could say something in the creative process or about the designs every time, however he gives me a lot freedom when I draw. Everything is clear in his scripts, it’s all there, but even then, he is open if I make some changes. I believe that mutual trust between the writer and the artist is essential to make a better project.

Enter the God Quarry along with the Mad Titan, Jeff Lemire, and Germán Peralta on July 26 when THANOS #9 debuts!

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