With the current rapid expansion of the Marvel cinematic universe, developers are surely looking at how they can get those big Disney bucks. Marvel's Spider-Man was a huge success on the PlayStation and, although Marvel's Avengers was a disappointing, half-baked live service game, Guardians of the Galaxy was one of 2021's highlights.
Firaxis is now giving us the less well-known Midnight Suns, with an eclectic cast that includes Ghost Rider, Blade and Iron Man, and plenty more superheroes will be making the leap over to gaming, but where's the Jessica Jones game?
Long ago, in the time of the Netflix and Marvel collaborations, there was a Jessica Jones series. And by long ago, I mean in 2015, which is ancient in terms of Marvel's current cinematic properties. Jessica Jones was part of a group of shows created to build up to another superhero team: The Defenders. I fear to mention the dreaded Iron Fist, but Luke Cage was pretty good, and Daredevil, The Punisher, and Jessica Jones were fantastic.
Daredevil and The Punisher are the easy choices to put in a game right? They've already appeared in their own games already. Daredevil is the best brawler around and The Punisher's arsenal of weaponry is begging for an FPS. However, Daredevil and The Punisher have their own time to shine. Jessica Jones deserves her own game and opportunity to kick ass.
Here's my pitch: Ace Attorney's mystery solving crossed with the dialogue of Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy and the environments of Hitman 3. Perfection.
Ace Attorney games have some of the best detective work in any game I know of. Putting clues together in those games is a pleasure. Searching for clues in dark alleyways, taking pictures of cheating husbands, and talking to informants are all activities that Jessica would have to pursue, and Ace Attorney's gameplay style would fit her well though they're tonally very different. The characters in Jessica's world would be a touch more grungy, and the themes would be more mature but that's where other elements fit nicely.
She's a bit more active than Phoenix Wright, of course. The most exercise Wright gets is when Miles Edgeworth batters him in court. Otherwise he just strolls between crime scenes. Jessica, on the other hand, breaks into buildings and gets into fights.
This is where Hitman provides some inspiration. IO Interactive's environments are the best of the best. Everything has a purpose, or multiple uses. You can get where you need to go through deception, breaking and entering, or climbing a drain at the back of a building. These kinds of extremely interactive locations are perfect for a PI that uses her smarts and cunning just as much as her superpowers. Maybe she needs to rifle through some files while avoiding cops, moving between hiding spots and creating distractions. And just like Agent 47, if she's spotted she still has the skills to trash her opponents. This is a lady who could very easily kill you with a stapler.
As deft as she is with her fists, sometimes she solves her problems with words. And, being a Marvel superhero, sometimes she just needs to get some bants off her chest. Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy has phenomenal casual conversations between characters. As they stride towards whatever destination is on the cards, the banter and debates that go on between them establish their friendship, rivalry, and history. As a PI, Jessica can be a bit of a lone wolf, at least when she's on the job, but she could also have a loose team of informants and friends to chat to, call, or lounge around in her apartment as she flits from case to case.
Let Jessica talk to clients. Let her think through an investigation, trying to come up with explanations for strange cases. Give her drama, give her drink, give her the opportunity to be stand-offish. I want a game where I can live my life being a mean bitch with a good heart and slouch around Hell's Kitchen in a leather jacket.
To be honest though, I'm looking for any excuse for Kristen Ritter to return to her role as Jessica Jones and somehow shoehorn David Tennant back in as the despicable Kilgrave. I'll be rewatching the first season of Jessica Jones tonight now—I've set myself off. However Marvel is slowly making some of Netflix's characters canon in Hawkeye and Spider-Man: No Way Home, so we might be closer to a comeback than we ever imagined.