Written by: Gary M. Kenny, CC2K Comics Editor
CC2K's Gary Kenny talks with Darksiders conception artist Joe Madureira, a comic illustrator with talent and genius which most recently was seen in Marvel Comics: Ultimates 3. His past works include Uncanny X-men, Battle Chasers, and Deadpool: The Circle Chase.
CC2K: I'm here with comic book great Joe Madureira to talk about the new video game: Darksiders. Joe, you created the concept art for this video game, since you're the pro can you tell us what Darksiders is all about?
JOEMAD: The basic premise of Darksiders is that you play as War, he is one of the four horsemen and when the game opens the earth is destroyed. The apocalypse happens, humanity is wiped out, and both angels and demons are having this war on earth. Basically, the Horsemen take the fall. It comes to light that the apocalypse wasn’t meant to have happened yet. There is a conspiracy between heaven and hell and somehow War takes the fall for it. He was there and he can’t figure out why he was there, he doesn’t remember. Nobody knew why he was there but they kinda pinned it on him. He is stripped of his power. He is imprisoned for a hundred years. However, he is later given a chance to go back to prove his innocence or to die within this world that he is responsible for.
CC2K: This game sounds very epic.
JOEMAD: Ya, the moment War gets back to Earth, the angels and demons are still there, fighting. It's a very big adventure. One of the first things War has to do in the game is free a demon from imprisonment. Actually, he is a demon who has betrayed his own kind, he also becomes War’s ally for most of the game. There is all kinds of crazy characters in there, War will fight angels, will team up with angels to fight demons. The cool thing about War is that he is not a good guy, he’s just caught in the middle of this thing, so he doesn’t take sides. He will just kill who ever gets in his face. That will occasionally involve him killing some angels as well, which is kinda cool.
CC2K: Oh lord, I'm sure that will create a reaction in the gamer community.
JOEMAD: Na, people react nicely to picking up a car and throwing it at an angel, in order to knock it out of the sky.
CC2K: Ha ha. Darksiders sounds crazy. I recently played a small demo, which looked amazing by the way. The game play was really solid as well.
JOEMAD: That is because there are a lot of different combat options, lots of weapons like swords and guns. It’s not just a brawler but an adventure game too. There are lots of exploring and backtracking in order to open up areas of the world that you couldn’t excess before. The game is modeled after the traditional classic adventure structure. You’ll always find things you couldn’t do right away. You will get new abilities and items and then be able to unlock those areas. The player is constantly exploring which breaks up the pace of the combat. We didn’t want to make a straight up brawler.
CC2K: Working with Team Vigil, what was it like watching the characters you designed come to life.
JOEMAD: It’s completely amazing. I get a lot of fulfillment obviously out of drawing, its something I love doing. However, when it’s taken to the next level and you have to visualize how the creature moves and think about how it attacks, how does it defend, what kind of special moves does it do, what kind of sounds does it make, it creates a whole new dimension to drawing and that's really fun.
CC2K: Since you are one the kings of drawing monsters and mutants, what are your favorite Darksiders villains?
JOEMAD: There is a character called the Jailer that turned out really well. He’s just a big, huge, blob with cages, hanging meat-hooks, half his body is made out of lumps of corpses, he’s pretty nasty looking; I love that guy. I also love Samael, he’s sort of like the head demon that you free from imprisonment, he ends up helping you. Samael is a shaddy character though, I think his design turned out really well.
CC2K: Before I let you go back to signing autographs and to enjoying the rest of the festivities at the Big Apple Comic Convention. What were your top 3 favorite video games growing up?
JOEMAD: The whole Castlevania series for sure. Out of this World was really cool, I think that was the game that made me think about games differently. The game was very cinematic, it had no UI (user-interface), it was just crazy. It did a lot of things video games didn’t do back then. Obviously The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time was great. Most games off of the N64, which is one of my favorite systems. Games like Banjo Kazooie, everything played and felt great because of that controller. Thinking back on it dude, I played everything. I had a Commodore 64. I did some P.C. gaming too. Best of all though, the Atari 2600, that started it all for me. Playing Combat, I had some crazy Chuck Norris game that was on a double cartridge. It was like a tank game on one side and Chuck Norris game on the other. Those days were cool; games like those in that era started my obsession. All my friends would be playing sports and I would be in the house drawing and playing video games. That’s what my childhood life was like.
CC2K: What are you currently playing now?
JOEMAD: Right now, I just started playing Uncharted 2, though I haven’t really got to far into it. Resident Evil 5, I’m trying to finish but I keep getting sidetracked by too many RPGs and online games, like World of Warcraft.
CC2K: Last question, I grew up reading the Uncanny X-men comics that you drew, loved battle chasers, and Ultimates 3, what’s up next for you in comics?
JOEMAD: We are talking about doing a Darksiders comic, which would come out next year. I don’t know how much I’ll be involved with that but I’m sure I’ll be involved. That’s all I can say right now.
CC2K: Thanks again Joe for your time and for speaking with us today.
JOEMAD: Any time, good luck with your Super Mario costume and mustache. Thanks for the interview (My terrible mustache can be seen in part 1).
Darksiders is coming out in January of 2010. Please look out for it. Click the links for more information on Darksiders and to preorder , also visit JoeMadfan.com for all that is Joe. Thank you THQ, Team Vigil, Joe Mad, Joe's Management and B.A.C.C. for this great interview.
Gary is a husband, father, fireman, comic reader, gamer, body builder, and rocker. He also is a co-owner of a bakery in upstate NY. He likes to tell everyone his favorite band is the Beatles, when his actual favorite band is the Alkaline Trio.