Theatergoers might have to wait until 2012 to see the next version of Spider-Man, but video gamers don’t.


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Granted, you won’t find a new star or director in next month’s Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions game, but you will find some new time zones.
In the game, four alternate Spideys pop up in eras such as the 1930s and the far-off future (2099, to be exact), each adapting to his time period with special powers and appropriate villains, like Norman Osborn (traditionally the Green Goblin) as a mobster called, simply, the Goblin. It made sense that Spider-Man co-creator and Marvel Comics legend Stan Lee called to chat about the title — not because he’s a gamer, but because the Twitter addict knows about adapting to new eras.

So, Stan, how’s the game?
I have to make a confession: I really don’t play video games. I wish I did! I think [gaming] is the most fascinating thing in the world.

Most video games focus on action and superpowers, not the stories and conflicts that make Marvel heroes interesting. Are you OK with that trade-off?
I’m OK with it because that’s what people who play the games are looking for: that action. However, I think each game becomes a little bit more sophisticated. In the next few years, you’ll probably find the same amount of human interest, of characterization and subplots, that you’d find in a comic-book story or a movie. They’re all headed that way.
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Shattered Dimensions does a rare thing for a Marvel game: It features alternate versions of a famed hero. Can even you keep up with so many Spideys?
Absolutely not [laughs]. I don’t have time. I look at the covers to get a feeling for what’s going on. They have so many different versions, and they have to do that. You have to hold the [gamers’] interest, coming up with new versions, new iterations, new ways to look at the characters, while keeping them true to the original concepts.

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Speaking of which, I recently saw that Donald Glover, a star of NBC’s Community, started an Internet campaign to audition as the next Spider-Man. Within days, you’d posted a supportive online reply. That’s savvy of you.
I was aware because so many people tweeted me about it!

You use Twitter often, then?
It helps a lot, yes. I do the Twittering to get responses. I love reading what my so-called followers have to say. I refer to them as my brigadiers.

Is one of your brigadiers “Feminist Hulk” or any of the Hulk parodies on Twitter?
Not that I’m aware of. You say there are Hulk parodies on Twitter?