Among the announcements at The Game Awards 2023 is that Marvel’s Blade, the dhampir vampire hunter made famous in Wesley Snipes’ film trilogy in the 1990s and 2000s, is getting his own video game. The game is being developed by Arkane Lyon, the studio behind the Dishonored games, Prey (2017) and Deathloop.
The reveal trailer is a bit light on details, but provides enough of Arkane’s signature style to get a sense of what to expect. It shows the famous vampire hunter at the barber’s for a shave only to be interrupted by a a vampiric intruder who causes Blade to suit up and get ready to head out, sword in hand. In perhaps a nod to the developer’s French origins, the game is set a quarantined section of Paris in the midst of a vampire invasion, forcing citizens to lock themselves inside at night to await the dawn.
In a statement on Marvel’s website, Bill Rosemann, VP and Creative Director of Marvel Games, stated “in honour of Blade’s 50th anniversary, we have found the perfect match for the Daywalker in Arkane Lyon, a studio of uncompromising artists who continually push the boundaries of game design and innovation. In addition to their award-winning talent, it’s their personal passion and bold vision for our half-human, half-vampire iconoclast that makes this collaboration a perfect fit.”
“As a kid of mixed origins, I felt a special connection to Blade – a hero with a dual heritage himself,” said Dinga Bakaba, Game Director of Arkane Lyon in a statement. “The opportunity to put our spin on this character is a dream of mine and a challenge that our team embraces with a passion. We couldn’t be happier to put players in Blade’s boots, as he becomes the champion of my hometown of Paris, one stake at a time.”
Marvel’s Blade is a somewhat atypical choice for a developer like Arkane. Not only is there is the lingering stench over the developer’s last vampire game, Redfall (admittedly developed by Arkane Austin rather than the main studio in Lyon), but the game is confirmed to be a third-person action game, something of a departure from its nearly-exclusively first-person library of previous works. That said, Blade has already had a strong showing in Firaxis’ Marvel’s Midnight Suns and with the Mahershala Ali-starring MCU film seemingly trapped in development hell, the famous Daywalker is long overdue a video game of his own.
We will have to await more info regarding gameplay details and a release window as the game’s development progresses. Combined with EA’s Black Panther and Insomniac’s Wolverine games that are also in development, Marvel video game fans have a lot to look forward to.